The Illustrated History of the Steam Locomotive


About fifty years ago the Author discovered a complete run of Engineering Magazine. It was published in London beginning in 1866.  In our various historical works over the years we have made frequent reference to these volumes. However, we were always intimidated by the huge expanse of images and history of steam locomotive development. We finally determined to put this material into print. The most unique feature of these imagines is the fact that prior to 1900 virtually all of them were cut from wood blocks. Not only were they wood engravings, but they were of the highest quality, and illustrate some of the most significant and unusual locomotives ever built. Numerous images are included of bridges and significant railroad architecture. We have also attempted to capture the changes in locomotive engineering over the years. Boiler pressures of perhaps fifty pounds were five or six times higher a century later. It is interesting to note that American design and British design took two different pathways. Both had their salient features and as the reader will see, both had their disadvantages. Although the Author could easily have elaborated further it seems appropriate to let the reader enjoy Wendel’s  Illustrated History of Steam Locomotives as presented.

C.H. Wendel July, 2013