The United States Army Transportation Corps S160 Class is a class of 2-8-0 Consolidation steam locomotive designed for use in Europe during World War II for heavy freight work. A total of 2,120 were built and they worked on railroads across the world, including Africa, Asia, all of Europe and South America.


During the 1930s, the United States Army Transportation Corps approved an update of a Baldwin Locomotive Works World War I design, in contingency for war transportation, to create the S159 Class. During the period of World War II, when America was neutral, the government of Franklin D. Roosevelt approved the Lend-Lease supply to the United Kingdom of the S200 Class, designed specifically to fit into the restricted British loading gauge.[1]

With America's entry to World War II, the USATC needed a developed design from which to create a volume of locomotive power for the wrecked railways of Europe, which they could use to deploy military hardware and civilian goods. Hence, the design created by Maj. J. W. Marsh from the Railway Branch of the Corps of Engineers, learnt from both previous locomotives, designed on austerity principles and built, using methods which created efficient and fast construction speed over long life,[1] such as axlebox grease lubricators and rolled plates preferred to castings.

With cast frames (a few had frames flame cut from rolled steel slabs[2]) and cast wheels, the front two driving axles were sprung independently from the rear two driving axles, to allow for running on poor quality track. The larger tender layout was derived from the similar design for the WD Austerity 2-8-0, with the coal bunker inset above the water tank to improve visibility when running backwards.


Builders Construction
Years Quantity USATC numbers
American Locomotive Company
70431 – 70455
1600 – 1624
70278 – 70302
1625 – 1649
70457 – 70483
1650 – 1676
Baldwin Locomotive Works
67661 – 67685
1677 – 1701
64641 – 64665
1702 – 1726
67561 – 67660
1727 – 1826
Lima Locomotive Works
8058 – 8101
1827 – 1870
8102 – 8157
1871 – 1926
American Locomotive Company
70514 – 70531
2032 – 2049
70532 – 70540
2050 – 2058
70541 – 70633
2059 – 2151
Lima Locomotive Works
8158 – 8247
2152 – 2241
Baldwin Locomotive Works
69485 – 69574
2242 – 2331
69589 – 69639
2332 – 2382
American Locomotive Company
70749 – 70808
2400 – 2459
Lima Locomotive Works
8317 – 8376
2500 – 2559
8262 – 8291
2560 – 2589
Baldwin Locomotive Works
69818 – 69867
2590 – 2639
69903 – 70038
2640 – 2775
Lima Locomotive Works
8429 – 8456
2776 – 2803
American Locomotive Company
70959 – 71008
2804 – 2853
71051 – 71186
2854 – 2989
71455 – 71459
3200 – 3204
71460 – 71634
3205 – 3379
Baldwin Locomotive Works
70337 – 70516
3380 – 3559
Lima Locomotive Works
8473 – 8612
3560 – 3699
American Locomotive Company
71895 – 71944
3700 – 3749
73394 – 73475
4402 – 4483
Lima Locomotive Works
8814 – 8858
5155 – 5199
8623 – 8662
5700 – 5739
8678 – 8699
5740 – 5761
8700 – 8707
5762 – 5769
8708 – 8797
5770 – 5859
Baldwin Locomotive Works
72058 – 72112
6024 – 6078

British deployment

800 locomotives were constructed in 1942/3 in thirteen batches, split between ALCO, Baldwin and Lima Locomotive Works. Shipped to South Wales and dispatched from the GWR locomotive depot at Newport, Ebbw Junction, the first 43 locomotives were transferred to the LNER works at Doncaster for completion, and later running in over the East Coast Main Line. This started a pattern whereby each of the four British railway companies eventually deployed a total of 400 S160's under the guise of "running in," but factually replacing damaged stock and increasing the capacity of the British railway system to allow for shipping of military pre-invasion equipment and troops. The eventual deployment of S160's were:

The second batch of 400 S160's were prepared for storage by USATC personnel at the Great Western's Ebbw Junction locomotive depot in the immediate run-up to D-Day. After the D-Day invasion of Normandy, the locomotives deployed across Britain again began to be collected and be refurbished at Ebbw Junction in preparation for shipment to Europe.

Operational failures

The S160's were designed for quick and efficient building, not long-term operations, thus compromises in design led to some difficulties in operation. The axle-box grease-lubricators were not very efficient, particularly when maintenance procedures lapsed or were delayed for operational war reasons, and so axle-boxes often ran hot.[3][4] Braking was poor by European standards, with a Westinghouse steam brake used for the locomotive,[1] which was woefully insufficient, due to the long distance from the driver's valve to the brake cylinder.

A major fault of the S160 was use of a single water gauge of a Klinger design, unfamiliar to U.K. crews. If the valves were not fully open, the crews could be misled into thinking that the water level was adequate, even though it was becoming dangerously low. When a low water condition allowed the crown sheet to overheat, the stay bolts holding the crown sheet would fail with little warning, resulting in a boiler explosion.[5] In a space of ten months, three UK S160s suffered a collapse of the firebox crown, with the first leading to the death of a GWR fireman on No. 2403 in November 1943. Although there are claims that the stay bolts or firebox design were less than for domestic locomotive boilers, the locomotives were equipped with a "(b)oiler built to comply in all aspects with the A.S.M.E. Boiler Code, except that the shell shall have a factor safety of 4."[6]


Judging accurately the actual deployment of 2120 locomotives is difficult, but the following numbers are referenced:[5]


The British locomotives, together with those shipped direct from America were also similarly deployed first with troops reclaiming Europe, and then subsumed throughout European national railways as replacements for their destroyed stock after the war:

  • Austria, ÖBB Class 956 – 30 examples, all scrapped[7]
  • Czechoslovakia, ČSD Class 456.1 – 80 examples, last of them (456.173) withdrawn in 1972 and scrapped the following year
  • France, SNCF Class 140U – 121 examples, all passed on to other countries by 1947;
  • Germany – 40 examples briefly used in 1947 in American and British zones, based in Bremen. All sold to Hungary in August 1947;
  • Greece, SEK Class Θγ (THg) – 27 examples received in 1947 (Θγ 521 to 537 and Θγ 551 to 560), plus 25 examples bought from Italian FS railways in 1959 (Θγ 571 to 595);
  • Hungary, MÁV Class 411 – 510 examples, bought at $100,000 each, of which 484 were put into use and allocated service numbers from 411.001 onwards, and 26 cannibalized for spares[8]
  • Italy, FS Class 736 – 244 examples, plus four salvaged from a sunken ship, all but eight with oil firing. 25 sold to Greece in 1959, the rest were withdrawn in early 1960s
  • Poland, PKP – received 75 S160s from UNRRA and numbered them Tr201-1 – 75; and a further 500 from USATC as Tr203-1 – 500.[8] In PKP service, boiler pressure was reduced to 13 bar (1,300 kPa; 190 psi) and maximum speed was set at 65 km/h (40 mph). Modifications included fitting Trofimov piston valves, electric headlights and cab side doors. One engine was converted to a Tank locomotive in 1957, and designated TKr55[5]
  • Soviet Union, Class ШA (ShA) – 200 machines ordered from Baldwin (ШA 1 to 90) and ALCO (ШA 91 to 200), designated S162s and S166s. ШA 52 to 55, 69 and 70 were lost en route to Vladivostok and ШA 13 remained in the USA.[9] In 1957, 50 of them were for 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in) track and used by the southern Sakhalin Railway[9]
  • Spain, Class 553 – in 1958 the Alaska Railroad sold six S160's to the Ferrocarril de Langreo[10][11][12]
  • Turkey, TCDD 45171 Class – 50 units, numbered 45171 to 45220[1]
  • United Kingdom – none in use with any of the mainline railways after World War II, as almost all were exported post D-Day. However one was kept back by the British Army, Alco built works number 71512, and used at the Longmoor Military Railway as their WD 93257 "Carl R Gray Jr".[13] Some have now been re-imported for use by preserved railways
  • Yugoslavia, JZ – Class 37 - 80 examples


At the same time as S160s were being deployed into Britain, when General Patton led American troops in Operation Torch into the North African Campaign, their Transport Corps brought the S160s with them. These locomotives moved across the north of the continent as Patton's troops waged war, and when the troops moved to Italy the majority of their S160s moved up with them. These locomotives, supplemented with those directly imported from America, were eventually to create a group of 243 locomotives, subsumed by the Italian State Railway's to become the FS Class 736 class.

  • Algeria, Class 140-U – number unknown
  • Morocco, Class 140-B – number unknown
  • Tunisia, Class 140-250 – number unknown


607 at the US Army Transportation Museum
  • Mexico, Class GR-28 – 10 examples purchased by FCM directly from Baldwin in 1946 and allocated service numbers 211 to 220, with different pilots and couplers (some sources give 11 examples) – these were the last examples of the S160 to be built
  • Peru, Class 80 – 2 examples, with different couplers, probably directly from ALCO in 1943
  • United States – an unknown number with USATC and then various military transportation units. Five surplus to requirements of the Alaska Railroad later shipped to Spain


After World War II, the reconstruction of the world required transportation. The S160s were deployed to Asia under the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration, to China and South Korea.[14]

  • China, Class KD6 – number unknown. Many were modernized with larger cabs, higher stacks, some fitted with large smoke lifters with horizontal riffles. They were later transferred to industrial operators, mainly coal mines. The last example thought to be KD6 487 withdrawn probably in 1997
  • India, class AWC – 60 locomotives were sent to India in kit form for local assembly as 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) broad gauge engines. Originally allocated USATC numbers 3433–3492 (Baldwin 70390–70449, 1944) they had their running numbers increased by 3000 by the Indian authorities to avoid numbers in use by the local railway companies.[15] They were split between the East Indian Railway and the South Indian Railway; at the all-India renumbering scheme the former EIR locomotives became 22601–22614, and SIR locomotives became 22615–22660.[15] Forty-five were still in service in June 1977.[15]

South Korea

100 S160s were shipped to South Korea in 1947, where the Korean National Railroad designated them Sori2 (소리2) class, numbering them 소리2-1 through 소리2-100.[16] They were not popular with Korean locomotive crews, as they were right hand drive on a left-running railway. In KNR service they were used primarily in yard duty and occasional short local trains.[16]

North Korea

North Korea's S160s came from the Soviet Union and China, starting almost immediately following the end of the Second World War.,[17] and the Korean State Railway eventually numbered them in the 8000 series. Ironically, the S160's were used by both North and South Korean forces during this conflict.[18]

Class Designation

Although "S160" has been popularly adopted as the class identification for this design of War Department Consolidation, it can not be verified as an official designation despite considerable research. The S160 designation is not found in 1942 and 1943 Baldwin drawing indexes,[19][20] the Lima drawing index for the class,[21] nor in meeting minutes[22] in which representatives of the War Department and the three builders made several design decisions prior to production. It is also not found in any of approximately 900 engineering drawings which are still in existence. The Baldwin designation for the design, 2-8-0-19S, is found in their drawing indexs, on some drawings, and is stamped onto major locomotive components on examples built by Baldwin.


There were several major variants of the S160 class, excluding inlife design development:

  • S161 - designed for deployment in Jamaica on British military railways used by the United States. Later subsumed by the Jamaica Railway Corporation[5]
  • S162 and S166 - both designed for Russian five foot broad gauge track
  • Sixty 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm) broad gauge examples were constructed for use in India in 1944 as part of an order for 180 locomotives which also include one locomotive configured to Alaska Railroad specifications.
  • There were several variations in equipment from the "standard" design for the War Department Consolidations, depending on the user. Typically, European-style buffers and couplers and kerosene lighting were fitted. Examples for India, the U.S.S.R., at least six purchased new for the Alaska Railroad, and possibly approximately 10 which remained on U.S. Army bases were fitted with turbo-generators and electric lighting. The six purchased new for the Alaska Railroad were also fitted by Baldwin with U.S. style automatic couplers, bells, power reverse, and U.S. style pilots.[23] Some later production had screw type reverse gear. The War Department also required that the locomotives could be configured to burn either coal or oil.


Mainly due to their numbers, rather than the design or build quality, at least 26 examples of the S160 have survived into preservation, making them one of the most numerous survivors of all Mainline Steam Locomotives:

USATC No. Builder Post World War II Owner Current Owner Location Notes
1631 Alco 70284 Hungary MÁV 411.388 Great Central Railway (Nottingham) United KingdomRuddington, Nottinghamshire under restoration
2138 Alco 70620 Hungary MÁV 411.380 Great Central Railway (Nottingham) United KingdomRuddington, Nottinghamshire Source of strategic spares for 1631
2364 Baldwin 69621 Hungary MÁV 411.337[24] Great Central Railway (Nottingham) United KingdomRuddington, Nottinghamshire Chassis only, source for strategic spares for 1631
2627 Baldwin 69855 United States Alaska Railroad 556 City of Anchorage United States Anchorage, Alaska
3523 Baldwin 70480 United States Alaska Railroad 557 Engine 557 Restoration Company United States Wasilla, Alaska August,2012, being restored for operation.
5846 Lima 8784 United States US Army 606 Crewe Railroad Museum United States Crewe, Virginia Re-lettered to Norfolk and Western #606
5187 Lima 8846 United States US Army 2627; US Army 607 US Army Transportation Museum United States Fort Eustis Military Railroad
2628 Baldwin 69856 United States US Army 611 Bill Miller Equipment Sales United States Eckhart Mines, Maryland Fitted with Franklin Type B Rotary Cam Poppet valve gear,[25] which is intended for use on the PRR 5550 project, undergoing restoration
2630 Baldwin 69858 United States US Army 612 Age of Steam Roundhouse United States Sugarcreek, Ohio From Southeastern Railway Museum, Duluth, Georgia
1702 Baldwin 64641 United States Reader Railroad Great Smoky Mountains Railroad United States Dillsboro, North Carolina Operational (July 2016)
5197 Lima 8856 China Fushun Industrial Railway, #KD6.463 Churnet Valley Railway United Kingdom Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire Overhaul began 2013, returned to service February 2017.
6046 Baldwin 72080 Hungary MÁV 411.144 Churnet Valley Railway United Kingdom Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire Overhaul finished July 2012, Returned to service December 2012.
2253 Baldwin 69496 Poland PKP Tr.203.208 Peter Best United Kingdom Stockton-on-Tees Cosmetically overhauled. Previously based on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Now under restoration to working condition at AD Engineering in Stockton. Upon completion it will be based at the Dartmouth Steam Railway.
5820 Lima 8758 Poland PKP Tr.203.474 Keighley and Worth Valley Railway United Kingdom West Yorkshire Returned to service in January 2014 following overhaul
3278 Baldwin 70340 Italy FS 736.073; Greece SEK Θγ575 Tyseley Locomotive Works United KingdomTyseley, West Midlands #701 Franklin D. Roosevelt, Under overhaul at Tyseley for Long Marston Military Railway
5164 Lima 8823 Poland PKP Tr.201.51 Polskie Koleje Państwowe Poland Jaworzyna Śląska
2438 ALCO 70787 Poland PKP Tr.203.296 Polskie Koleje Państwowe Poland Jaworzyna Śląska
5801 Lima 8739 Poland PKP Tr203-451 Polskie Koleje Państwowe Poland Warsaw Railway Museum
3540 Alco 70587 Hungary MÁV 411.118 Hungarian Railway Museum HungaryBudapest Operational
2781 Lima 8434 Hungary MÁV 411.264 Railway station Hungary Hatvan Plinthed
6056 Baldwin 72090 Hungary MÁV 411.358 Railway station Hungary Hegyeshalom Plinthed
1786 Baldwin 67679 Hungary MÁV 411.005 Unknown Hungary Komarom Boiler only.[26]
2206 Lima 8212 Greece SEK Θγ 525 OSE Greece Thessaloniki Depot stored
2524 Lima 8341 Turkey TCDD 45172 Turkish State Railways Turkey Çamlık Railway Museum
2879 Alco 71076 Turkey TCDD 45174 Turkish State Railways Turkey Ankara Railway Museum
3292 Alco ? Italy FS736.086 Museo Ferroviario Piemontese Italy Turin Awaiting restoration
3324 Alco 71579 Italy FS 736.114 FS Italy Pietrarsa railway museum
Baldwin-Lima-Hamilton 75503 United States US Army 610 Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum United States Chattanooga, Tennessee Out of service for her 1472 inspection & rebuild. 610 is technically not an S-160 but classified as a type A, constructed in 1952


  1. ^ a b c d 45171 to 45220 trainsofturkey.com
  2. ^ American Locomotive Company Frame drawing 466S119000
  3. ^ "The USATC S160 2-8-0s". The London & North Eastern Railway (LNER) Encyclopedia. 
  4. ^ Boddy et al. 1983, p. 99
  5. ^ a b c d Tr201/Tr203 locomotives.com.pl
  6. ^ Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification No. 43-F-19 for United States Government class 2-8-0 19S.
  7. ^ http://www.30937.co.uk/AUST_CLASS_STEA_OBB.htm
  8. ^ a b USATC S160 2-8-0 No. 5197 & 6046 The Churnet Valley Guide
  9. ^ a b Rakov 1995, pp. 338–339
  10. ^ Tourret 1977, pp. 63–64
  11. ^ USATC Steam Locomotives 1942 - 1947 Archived April 5, 2005, at the Wayback Machine.
  12. ^ http://www.ratrust.org/Photos/Spain/Locomotives/Narrow_Gauge__W_/N_G__West/n_g__west_23.html
  13. ^ "Rail Album - USATC S-160 2-8-0s Part 1". www.railalbum.co.uk. 
  14. ^ Vintage Shenyang Area Pictures January 1985
  15. ^ a b c Hughes 1979, pp. 35–36
  16. ^ a b "Korean National CS-2 2-8-0s". donsdepot.donrossgroup.net. 
  17. ^ Hayato, Kokubu, 将軍様の鉄道 (Shōgun-sama no Tetsudō), p. 110, ISBN 978-4-10-303731-6
  18. ^ A Glimpse of North Korea's Railways Archived 2008-05-02 at the Wayback Machine. Florian Schmidt for Continental Railway Journal
  19. ^ The Baldwin Locomotive Works Drawing Record, Sales Order No. 42302, July 9, 1942
  20. ^ Baldwin Locomotive Works Drawing Index for Sales Order Number 43306, August 7, 1943
  21. ^ Lima Locomotive Works Direct Locomotive Card Index, United States War Department Type 2-8-0, with updates annotated through April 27, 1945.
  22. ^ U.S. War Department Memoranda of Interview dated May 18 and June 2, 15, and 16, 1942.
  23. ^ Baldwin Locomotive Works Specification No. 43-F-19 for Class 2-8-0 19S nos. 476 to 479 (Alaska Railroad 551 through 554), July 20, 1943
  24. ^ http://www.steamlocomotive.info/vlocomotive.cfm?Display=27903
  25. ^ "Saul Nadler's Photos". saulnadler.railfan.net. 
  26. ^ http://www.steamlocomotive.info/vlocomotive.cfm?Display=20196
  • Boddy, M.G.; Brown, W.A.; Neve, E.; Yeadon, W.B. (November 1983). Fry, E.V., ed. Locomotives of the L.N.E.R., part 6B: Tender Engines - Classes O1 to P2. Kenilworth: RCTS. ISBN 0-901115-54-1. 
  • Hughes, Hugh (1977). Steam Locomotives in India, Part 3 – Broad Gauge. Harrow, Middlesex: The Continental Railway Circle. ISBN 0-9503469-4-2. 
  • Rakov, V. A. (1995). Lokomotivy otechestvennykh zheleznykh dorog 1845–1955 (in Russian). Moscow. ISBN 5-277-00821-7. 
  • Tourret, R. (1977). United States Army Transportation Corps Locomotives. Abingdon: Tourret Publishing. ISBN 0-905878-01-9. 

External links