The Nickel Plate Road Historical & Technical Society

Ohio Central to Acquire NKP Berkshire #763

From John B. Corns

NKP 763Roanoke, Jan. 3, 2007 - Ohio Central Railroad System CEO Jerry Joe Jacobson (←photo left; click for larger image) shakes the hand of Virginia Transportation Museum Executive Director Bev Fitzpatrick during a meeting where OCRS agreed to purchase from VMT the former Nickel Plate Road 2-8-4 763. Several options were discussed for the swapping of steam locomotives to bring the big Berk back home to the Buckeye State, but both organizations were in agreement that a straight cash sale would be better suited for all concerned. Details of the sale have not been announced. The OCRS has nine other steam locos (three of which are operational), and will bring the Berk to the railroad's Morgan Run Shop this spring where 763 will be rebuilt for service by OC shop forces. VMT is home to an impressive collection of railroad rolling stock, including historic steamers such as N&W J-class 4-8-4 611 and A-class 2-6-6-4 1218. Nickel Plate 763 was built by Lima in 1944, and was operated across Ohio in fast freight service. When NKP dieselized its road power in 1958 the 763 was stored in the yard at Bellevue for future donation to that town. However, after the 1964 merger of NKP into Norfolk & Western, N&W took the steamer to its headquarters city of Roanoke where 763 has been displayed ever since.

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