Volume 23, Number 03 March, 2020 

At our January CAGRS meeting, Ray Holich brought some books in for us to take if we wanted one. As I looked at the books, I noticed one named Classic North American Steam, by Nils Huxtable. I quickly thumbed through it and decided I would take it for Madison to read. When I got home, I began reading the book. I got to a section called “The 2-8-4 Berkshire and the 2-10-4 Texas”. I couldn’t believe my eyes! All the years we have had the bell to the Texas 609 engine,it has been almost impossible to find anything written about the Texas 2-10-4. Since I had just written article about the Texas engine, I have decided to include the short paragraph it says about the Texas 2-10-4 and the engine No. 610.

“Superpower personified: 2-10-4 No 610 was one of Lima”s second batch of Texas engines delivered to the Texas and Pacific Railroad in 1927. A beauty this Texas is not, but the huge boiler and firebox, jutting feedwater heater and maze of pipework indicate pure muscle, augmented by a booster for extra power on starting. After accumulating a million miles in freight service between Texarkana and El Paso, the mighty 2-10-4 was donated to the city of Ft. Worth. Restored for the Freedom Train in 1976, the 610 spent its next four years as the Southern Railways most powerful excursion engine. Little of its 98,000 pounds of tractive effort is needed to roll this twenty car excursion train into Chattanooga’s Citico Yard, but the sight is impressive nevertheless. Five hundred Texas locomotives were produced…”
Classic North American Steam by Huxtable, Nils , p 86

That is all I will say about the Texans, but I would like to quickly share about a couple of my experiences I had as a child living next to the Texas and Pacific Railroad, When we moved next to the railroad, I was about three. One day when I was about 5 years old, one of the large steam engines stopped next to our house. It was very unusual for an engine to stop there. My grandfather went out to see what was up. For some reason, the engine had broken down.

My grandfather lifted me up onto the step into the engine and I saw the fireman and engineer working together, My first impression besides seeing how large the engine was (especially to a five year old), was the amount of heat inside the cab. It gets hot in Texas but it wasn’t a hot day and the heat was almost overpowering. I watched as the fireman put coal into the firebox. They wouldn’t let me inside the cab, but I saw what I wanted to see. The next thing I noticed was how dirty the fireman and engineer were. I had never thought about how dirty their jobs were. (EDITOR'S NOTE: "Girls!!") It was an eye opener.

Now contrast that experience to the first time a diesel engine stopped next to the house and once again we went to see the engine. We walked all around the engine (inside) My first impression was how hot the engine was, but also how clean everything was. The amount of heat never seemed to change with the two engines. Heat is a measurement of energy. Energy to move big large things. One was just cleaner than the other. I have never checked the temperatures between the two engines. That would be a great job for one of you, our readers.

Gayle Parker

Keep ‘em running.

Madison Parker
Tel: 630-542-9062 (mobile)



This afternoon I sent out an email regarding future meetings in the near time for CAGRS. As a result of multiple inputs from the federal government to small businesses along with coordination with the CAGRS board members, I have decided to defer further meetings until after April.

I realize that this will create some problems, but considering the health of our members, I feel that it is necessary. I will be following all of the news stories along with you that will affect each of us as we toil in this new stage of our lives.

Take care of yourselves and God bless,



Due to the changes in schedules of government activities, our original date of 18 April, 2020, our original pot-luck date was cancelled. Due to quick interventions by club members, we were able to negotiate a replacement date.

The rescheduled date is October 3, 2020. October is the correct month. This is subject to changes at a later date, but it is our best shot for the time being. This enables us to maintain the original date of our elections . We will be forwarding the list of nominees to you shortly. Instructions for choosing your candidates will be forthcoming.

Check your e-mail often to receive your ballot.

Take care of yourselves and stay healthy.

Madison Parker CAGRS President


All public events at the DuPage County Fairgrounds during the next few weeks have been cancelled due to the Coronavirus public health crisis. The May show, scheduled for May 3rd, is still currently on. Please watch our website for updates.

Please let others know that the show is canceled, and if they want to recieve emails about the show they can sign up at


Ray Holich has six large boxes of books to give away at CAGRS meetings.

Train & Circus Books.
Free to a Good Home.

Please limit one book per family per meeting. Each meeting Ray is at, he will bring 20 to 25 books.

Please let others have access to these books, so please observe the limit of one book per family per meeting.

These are from the estate of Ray Kotz and donated by Dr. Jackie Vernot.

Contact: Ray Holich -