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Don's Rail Photos

Lehigh Stone Company

One of the better kept secrets of the early 1960s was the Lehigh Stone Co. 3 foot gauge operation at Lehigh, Illinois, which was just north of Kankakee. One July day in 1960 I found the operation and was given permission to enter the property and take pictures. I found 4 little Vulcans stored and 4 critters in operation. I heard later that the pit closed down, and Pete Burno bought the steamers and moved them to Wisconsin. I'd like to know what happened to them. Mark Milbourne provided a lot of information on the 799.

799, Vulcan Nov 1926, #3714, for Hummel Ross Fibre Corp in Hopewell, VA. It was later sold to LeRoy Lime & Crushed Stone Co. In 1930 it was sold to John S. Lane & Son, Westfield, MA. In 1949 it became LSCo 799. In 1965 it was sold to the Doe River Development Co, who had it rebuilt by Marion Machine Co which included a new boiler, a tender, and a leading truck. It was in operation in May 1968 as Doe River Gorge Playland 101. This was on former East Tennessee & Western North Carolina roadbed at Hampton, TN. DRGP added a trailing truck to make it a 2-4-2. A few years later, the operation became Hillbilly World. In 1977 another operator took over and ran for two years. That was it until 1987 when the Doe River Gorge Camp and Conference Center took over. They are an Outward-Bound group. The remaining equipment was put on display for awhile. Then it was decided to reopen the railroad. The 799/101 was moved to Little River Locomotive Works in March 2000 for restoration. A new boiler will be fabricated to replace the 1968 boiler, and the locomotive will become ET&WN 15, following the highest road number before the narrow gauge was abandoned in 1950.

800 was built by Vulcan Iron Works in 1927, #3837.  It was sold to Pete Burno in Spring Green, WI, in 1960 and resold to Cedar Point & Lake Erie Ry in August 1968.  It was rebuilt as 2-4-0 CP&LE 2 "Roger Linn" in 1976 and sent to Wild World Amusement Park in Largo, MD.  It was returned to CP&LE in 1984 but not used.  It was sold to Bill Norred of California in the 1990s and sold to Paramount Ranch in 1993.  It was then sold to Rob Rossi in 2001.

802 was built by Vulcan Iron Works in 1922, #3333.  It was sold to Pete Burno in 1960 and resold to CP&LE in August 1968.  It was rebuilt as 2-4-0 with tender as CP&LE 5.  It was named "Jack Foster" in 1974.  It was retired in the 1980s and rebuilt in by Shop Services in 1992 as 5 "Judy K".

803, Vulcan 1923, #3335, was built as John Marasch 102 for service at Lansing, MI. It was sold to Birmingham Rail & Locomotive who sold it to Lehigh. Lehigh sold it to Doe River Development through Ideas, Inc, of Marion, NC. Ideas seems to have been affiliated with Marion Machine. Doe River apparently did not use the locomotive and sold it to Pete Burno of Spring Green, WI. I verified with Pete that he sold the locomotive to Cedar Point & Lake Erie at Sandusky, OH, but it is not known where it may be.

The four critters all had plates indicating they were built by Jayell Co. And now we have a new locomotive builder----or rebuilder since it is apparent they were built on steam locomotive frames.






Standard gauge trackage had several locomotives over the years.

5460, GP7u, was built by Electro-Motive in April 1962, #15720, as Delaware Lackawanna & Western 959.  It became Erie Lackawanna 1278, Class MFSE-15D-4, in 1960 and Consolidated Railroad Corp 5993, Class GP-7, in April 1976,  It was rebuilt by Morrison Knudsen in November 1978 as 5460, Class GP-8, and retired on April 11, 1991.  It was sold as LSCo 5460 and became Vulcan Materials Co 5460.


Thanks to Bob Lehmuth, Wes Barris, and Jason Mockensturm for information.


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