Electric Locomotives

Hanna Iron Mining Company
Electric Locomotive No. 307

No. 307, constructed by General Electric in 1928, is typical of the many 60-ton steeple- cab electric locomotives formerly used in mining and industrial railroad operations. It is the last electric locomotive that operated on the Mesabi Range. Built originally for use at Hanna’s Wabigon Mine at Buhl, Minnesota, it later worked on the Mesabi Chief Washing Plant haulage line near Keewatin. Electrical power was received by means of unusual offset type pantographs which provided clearance necessary for shovel loading of trains in the pits. When No. 307 reached the end of the line, a cord from its huge front mounted disk, working like an extension cord, allowed the engine to travel further into the mine. The locomotive was donated to the Museum by the Hanna Mining Company in 1974.



Milwaukee Road
Electric Locomotive No. 10200

No. 10200 was the first of 42 electric locomotives delivered by General Electric to the Road beginning in 1915, the year it was built, when the Milwaukee electrified operations across five mountain ranges in Montana, Idaho, and Washington. Electrification of a railroad is very expensive to do because of the need for poles, overhead wires, and power substations. The payback for the Milwaukee Road was that they could pull longer and heavier trains over their mountain divisions faster than the steam trains of the day could. The Milwaukee Road operated 660 miles of electrified railroad in 2 divisions in Montana, Idaho, and Washington, which was for many years the longest mainline electrified railroad in the world. The locomotive received electricity through a pantograph, which reached up and touched a wire above the tracks. Electricity came down from the wire through transformers inside the engine and into motors by the wheels. Probably the oldest operable locomotive in the United States when electrification on the Milwaukee Road was discontinued in 1974, the 10200 was a historic locomotive when it was new. At the time it was built, it was the most powerful locomotive in the world, the first to use the then-high voltage of 3,000, and the first to use regenerative braking. In 1915, when the 10200 traveled to its new operating territory, more than 60,000 people came down to stations along the way to look it over and wish it well. It was donated to the Museum in 1977 by the Milwaukee Road.