German Steam Locomotives at Fort Eustis

 I have 6 photos that belonged to my father-in-law. They show a streamlined steam locomotive being unloaded from a ship somewhere in the Norfolk Virginia area. I’m guessing the pictures were taken during or just after WWII. 

I did a little scouring on the internet and believe them to be of a German L52-KON Kreigsloco advanced design steam locomotive. (Photo match found At the end of WWII four German steam locomotives were captured and sent to Ft. Eustis, Virginia around September, 1945 for testing and evaluation.

The V19 1001, was a V8 steam motor that powered 2-8-2 streamlined high speed passenger locomotive. This engine was an experimental but was used between Hamburg and Berlin until it was damaged in an air raid. It was re-built and sent to the USA. It may have been exhibited at the Chicago Railroad Fair. It was scrapped around 1952-53.

 Various components (injector, air pump, lubrication system, etc.) were tested at Fort Patrick Henry in 1946. Little or nothing appeared to have been done to it at Ft. Eustis. The locomotive's condensing system was examined as well. But steam was already on the decline, so there little interest in the findings by American railroads. 

It was a great shame that the German rolling stock was not sent to American museums for preservation. Many of the German and Japanese aircraft you find in the Smithsonian and elsewhere were brought here for the same purpose. The Germans did not want to pay the $15000 it would have cost to ship 19.1001 back to Germany, so it and the other equipment was scrapped in 1952. 

The condensing equipment in L52-KON was utilized later in the Class 25 4-8-4s built for South African Railways in the 1950s. The system saved water in the desert, but was troublesome, and were converted to Class 25NC locomotives later. 

I had a lot of fun researching this.