AARR wrote:When I open the link I get a blank page. Which engine is it? And why does England want it? Thanks.
Link worked for me, but here is the article:
Meg Jones Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
May 4, 2012
GREEN BAY —
The mighty steam engine named after Dwight Eisenhower is about to get its passport stamped again.
Almost half a century ago, the locomotive and coal tender traveled from England via rail and sea to Green Bay, where it has attracted thousands of train fans and World War II history buffs to the National Railroad Museum.
Soon it will head back across the pond for the 75th anniversary celebration of the world speed record for steam locomotives. The record wasn't set by the London and North Eastern Railway A4 locomotive housed in a climate-controlled building in Green Bay. But since there are only six surviving A4 steam engines in the world, the Eisenhower is highly sought after.
The dark green locomotive and tender are attached to two rail cars used by Eisenhower as a mobile command headquarters in England during the planning for the D-Day invasion in 1944.
Aside from the Green Bay museum's A4, there's one at a Montreal museum and four in England.
Officials from Britain's National Railway Museum in York, England, contacted the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay last year to see if the Wisconsinites would part with the historic locomotive for two years.
"It's one of the pieces we love," said Jacqueline Frank, executive director of the Green Bay museum. "We definitely are sad to see it leave, but it's an opportunity for us because it will spur us to change our exhibits and do some preservation projects" while the locomotive and tender are overseas.
It's common for museums to lend artifacts to each other. Most museum pieces don't weigh 122 tons, though. And moving a steam locomotive and tender is not like shipping a Van Gogh.
Since the Green Bay museum's A4 hasn't chugged along tracks in decades, it will be jacked up and moved to the other side of the museum building to train tracks that connect with an old Wisconsin Central Railroad spur. One or two large cranes will place the locomotive on a flatbed rail car -- the tender will be moved the same way a day later -- and then transported by Canadian National Railway to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where it will be joined by the A4 at the Montreal museum.
Both locomotives and tenders will then travel by sea to England, still on the same flatbed rail cars, where they'll be transported by train to the museum in York. The flatbed cars are lower than American flatbeds because many old rail bridges in England are lower than their counterparts in America, explained Frank.
England's National Railway Museum houses the country's collection of historically significant railway vehicles -- either built in Britain or operated on British railways -- and is considered one of the premier rail museums in the world.
Transportation costs will be paid by the British museum for the exhibit celebrating the steam engine speed record of 126 mph set in 1938 by an A4 called Mallard. Organizers are discussing using one of the A4s in an attempt to break the old record.
Meanwhile, Eisenhower's staff cars, which are outfitted with a conference room, sleeping cabins and beds adorned with green Army blankets, will remain in Green Bay. When Ike traveled, the cars sported bulletproof plates on the roof and sides.
Visitors to the Green Bay museum have until mid-July to see the A4 locomotive before it leaves. The engine will be gated off for the move, although spectators will be able to see it prepped for the journey. The actual lifting will be done after the museum has closed for the day.
While the locomotive and tender are on their British sojourn, Green Bay museum officials plan to spruce up the two Eisenhower staff cars by painting interiors and exteriors, replacing furniture and installing new interactive features.
The National Railroad Museum gets about 75,000 visitors each year. Eisenhower visited Green Bay for the train's dedication at the museum in 1964.
Though it was named after Eisenhower, the locomotive actually never pulled the supreme allied commander's heavily armored rail cars during World War II. After the war, it continued to be used for passenger service and was dubbed the Dwight D. Eisenhower in honor of his service. In 1959, Harold Fuller, the Green Bay museum's board chairman, asked the British Railway Board if it could be purchased.
The British Railway Board rebuffed attempts to acquire the Eisenhower because it still had many years "of sterling service in front of it," according to museum archives. Two years later, Fuller tried again and, after hundreds of letters and telegrams, the National Railroad Museum managed to buy the locomotive and tender.
It traveled under its own steam to the Southampton docks in England, sailed to New York and then chugged to Green Bay in May 1964. The two staff cars used by Ike followed four years later.
For more information about Green Bay's National Railroad Museum, go to nationalrrmuseum.org