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Steam to St Louis DVD

Steam to St Louis DVD Pentrex S2SL-DVD 748268001390
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St. Louis, Missouri, was the site of the National Railway Historical Society's 1990 Convention. Three of the nation's largest steam locomotives attending the convention traveled three different routes in a spectacular display of mainline steam action.
Pentrex crews covered the movement of the Norfolk & Western 1218, the Union Pacific 844 and the Cotton Belt 819. The trips covered over 9 states and thousands of miles. The 1218 traveled from Columbus, Ohio, through Louisville, Kentucky, on into St. Louis. The 844 started from Cheyenne, Wyoming, pulling freight to Kansas City, Missouri. From Arkansas came the 819 departing Little Rock with its special passenger excursion.

This tape provides the most complete coverage available of these mighty locomotives on their way to St. Louis.

90 Minutes
In Color with Live Audio and Narration
Packaged in Plain Wrap
Produced by Pentrex 1990

DVD
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DVD Item#:S2SL-DVD
Runtime:1 Hour, 30 Mins ($0.27/min)
Producer:Pentrex
Aspect Ratio:Full Screen
DVD UPC:748268001390
Shrink Wrapped?:Yes
Disc Type:DVD
Region Code:0 Worldwide NTSC
Steam to St Louis DVD
Nikhil Murthy (Washington) on 2017-03-17 14:57:30.

People who found this review helpful: 2

  •  5 of 5


This program shows the 3 steam locomotives that traveled from their home bases to the 1990 NRHS Convention in St. Louis, MO: Cotton Belt 819, Union Pacific 844, and Norfolk & Western 1218.

The program begins with Cotton Belt 819 being prepared at Pine Bluff, AR on June 11. Then the 819 is chased the following day from Pine Bluff to Illmo, MO aka Scott City. One of the highlights in this segment is meeting and exchanging whistle salutes with St. Louis, Iron Mountain, & Southern #5 at Delta, MO. The next segment traces the 819 from Illmo to Pine Bluff after completing an NRHS excursion that ended in Illmo on June 17.

Next, Union Pacific 844 is seen pulling three different freight trains on three consecutive days from Cheyenne, WY to Kansas City, MO with overnight stops in North Platte, NE on June 7; Marysville, KS on June 8; and Kansas City, MO on June 9. The interesting part about this is that the 844 was running late on all three of these days, especially from North Platte to Marysville where the engine was over 7 hours late upon arriving at Marysville. Then the 844 is seen on June 18 from west of Kirkwood (since Frisco 1522 was dropped off there which can be seen in "St. Louis Steam Celebration") to Kansas City, MO with an excursion train on its way back to Cheyenne.

Finally, Norfolk & Western 1218 is seen for the first 3 days of the 4-day Independence Limited starting on June 9 from Columbus, OH to St. Louis, MO. Day 1 is from Columbus to Cincinnati, OH (actually Ludlow, KY) via Portsmouth, Day 2 is from Cincy to Louisville, KY via Lexington, and Day 3 is from Louisville to Mt. Vernon, IL. Interesting highlights include the climb over Erlanger Hill on Day 2 and several tunnels encountered on the Day 3.

The narration was infrequent. But at least there were on-screen graphics to keep the viewer informed as to where the train is currently at, especially for the 1218 segment which had extremely limited narration.

Additional remarks by Nikhil Murthy:
Narration: Just enough.
Would kids enjoy this? Definitely!
Image quality: Excellent!
DVD Value: Excellent Value!
Recommend to others? A "Must Have"!

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Steam to St Louis DVD
Steamboy (Revere MA US) on 2020-06-29 23:43:26.

  •  5 of 5


In this recently turned 30 year old program, it starts with clips from St. Louis steam celebration. Which consists of all 4 steam giants at the depot on Friday June 15, 1522 to newburg on Saturday June 16, 844 to Findlay on Thursday June 14, pacing 819, & 1218 on the independence limited. A mention of the best of 1988 is used.

Speaking of 819, the action begins at the Arkansas railroad museum which was originally the birthplace of the 1942 northern. There are last minute preparations on Monday June 11 which was the same day 844 & 1218 was also on the road to the convention. In addition to the seldom seen 4-8-4, the coaches are also being serviced & riding on the transfer table one car per ride. An interview with crewmember Darrell cason is included as he is wiping down the traction rods. In order to get the coaches out of the shops & onto the transfer table, a forklift was used to tow them. The sun is setting as Nw2 number 2489 assembles the coaches for tomorrow's 2 day trip. At last the big day has arrived: Tuesday June 12 1990. Which is the first of the 2 day trip to the convention headquarters. Before 819 leaves its birthplace, engineer Jack stone is being interviewed by a local channel 7 crew as evidenced by the Sony Betacam. Plus a southbound freight with 2 units led by 7363. Out on the mainline, 819 is beyond pine bluff. Some scenes were also shown in other pentrex titles: 819 as part of the mighty steam series from 1991, & also on tape 1 of the best selling program: today's steam across America from 1995. 819's whistle sounds great as it rolls through Humphrey with no diesel helpers in sight. At clarendon, the locomotive crosses over the white river swing bridge. Afterwards, 819 makes a service stop in Brinkley. Note the local policemen holding the crossing gate over their heads. With water refueled, 819 leaves town. North of Brinkley, the locomotive whistles through hickory ridge. Another service stop finished, & 819 leaves hickory ridge with the grain elevators in the background. North of hickory ridge, there is a pacing sequence. A nice couple sits on the porch as 819 whistles through rector. After crossing the state line, the locomotive goes under the highway bridge at Malden. Again listen to that incredible whistle. Meanwhile at delta Missouri near the diamond, St. Louis Iron mountain & southern 2-4-2 #5 built by porter in 1946 is hauling bay window caboose on its way to the diamond to meet up with 819. The little engine also worked for the crab orchard & Egyptian in Marion Illinois. Besides pentrex filming the meet, 2 more noteworthy railroad video producers Mark 1 & Greg Scholl were also there for not only the meet with the since been back into retirement more of these 2 engines but also for the entire convention. Note the 2 whistles on the former CO&E 2-4-2. At last, 819 arrives at its overnight stop in Illmo which is also called Scott city. The Wednesday June 13 run to st. Louis & the first half of the Sunday June 17 return trip can be found in St. Louis steam celebration. The second half of the homeward bound trip to line bluff begins in Illmo after a service stop. Along the way, the 819 creates black smoke that is billowing out of the funnel. 2 scenes were made south of Illmo. The 1942 built northern is still smoking at Idalia, South of dexter, & over the st Francis river trestle as it crosses into Arkansas. We bid farewell to 819 & head all the way West to Cheyenne Wyoming.

In Cheyenne, on Thursday June 7, 844 is being prepared to couple up to an eastbound 37 car freight with a former rock island bay window caboose on the rear. The destination with the freight before the convention headquarters: Bailey yard in North Platte. At the same time, challenger 3985 is still coverting from coal to oil. The pentrex version of the challengers test run with the conversion of oil is yet to be converted to DVD as it too was also been 30 years since the world's once largest operating steam locomotive in the world has been switched to an oil burner. As 844 leaves Cheyenne, there are some brand new wide cab dash 8-40CW's on the road. The never retired northern highballs at burns as engineer Steve Lee notches down on the whistle cord. Already in Nebraska, 844 passes through Dix, Sunol, & a service stop in lodgepole. Wherever 844 goes, the crowd comes. With service finished, 844 leaves lodgepole. Pentrex & William Brown video productions were the official producers to capture the two tone gray northern on a freight. East of lodgepole, 844 is at brutte. Again there are no diesel helpers. A meet with a 2 unit westbound coal train is included as the never retired northern built by Alco in 1944 is east of Ogallala. East of Hershey, 844 is taking some slow orders as it approaches the yard limits while entering north platte. A John Deere tractor works in the field. Uncoupled from the freight 844 heads for track 6 at Bailey yard. There are also multiple diesels being switched around from mostly UP, but there is one from the Chicago & northwestern. The boxcar is filled with a special staircase for people to see 844's cab at St. Louis union station. On Friday June 8, 844 is on another freight. This time it's heading for Marysville Kansas. Before 844 leaves town, a pair of SD40-2 units 3329 & 3324 are uncoupled from the doublestack. While waiting for 844 an eastbound 2 unit coal train with 6131 & 6010 rolls through the crossing. Over an hour late, 844 finally gets the right of way. Again Steve Lee notches down on the whistle cord. Due to track work, there are several miles of slow orders. Several hours later, 844 is east of Gothenburg & it's finally back on normal speed after track work & multiple diesel powered freight traffic. Then it whistles at Cozad, meets with A westbound 2 unit mixed freight with an SD40-2 & a C40-8, whistles through elm creek, & passes by an abandoned station east of elm creek. At Denman, 844 is on the single track line from Gibbon to Marysville as it whistles over the bridge. In the late afternoon sun, 844 is at hayland. At Hastings, 844 is being refueled with water. At level, a 7 unit lash up is parked on a siding to let 844 gets the right of way. The lash up has units from union pacific, Missouri Pacific, & others. At Mayberry Kansas, 844 is waiting for a new crew while the sun is setting. On Saturday June 9 the same day 1218 started the independence limited from Columbus Ohio to St. Louis, 844 is pulling one last freight train: this time it's from Marysville to Kansas city where the freight would be dropped off & the locomotive picks up the coaches. The first scene is at cook kansas. Unlike the previous 2 days, the Saturday freight is very shorter. A service stop was made in Topeka, & the 844 whistles through Perry. In Lawrence, 844 squeezes right between the freight, & whistles for the crossing. 4 hours later due to tons of freight traffic, 844 gains some slow orders at Bonner springs. Here the locomotive drops the freight train, & would later grab the coaches for the convention. In Kansas city, 844 passes by SD40-2 number 3688 as it crosses the state river in Armstrong yard with only the water car, baggage car, boxcar, & rock island caboose. On Sunday June 10, 844 is on display at the Missouri Pacific Neff yard. A mention of st Louis steam celebration is included from Kansas city to st. Louis. With the convention finished on Monday June 18, 844 doubleheads with 1522 to Kirkwood. The action begins in Osage junction as the eastbound freight is parked on the siding to let 844 go by while crossing the Osage river bridge. The westbound one way special is sponsored by the smoky hill railway club. Next, there is some pacing going on which includes a shot of 844 passing by the. Cementary in California kansas. With pacing finished, 844 negotiates a bend at smithton near milepost 181, then it whistles at Dresden. The locomotive crawls to a stop as it meets Amtrak train number 359 with an F40 in the lead carrying only 3 coaches. With the short Amtrak train out of the way, 844 departs Dresden. At knobnoster near milepost 205, 844 whistles for the crossing, then it whistles at kingsville. The other event that 844 did for 1990 is to participate in the 100th birthday of President Eisenhower in Abilene Kansas. That trip was covered in the best of 1990.

On Saturday June 9 while 844 is on a short freight, 1218 is on the independence limited as it leaves Columbus on a really wet day. First The 1943 Roanoke Virginia built class A 2-6-6-4 whistles at Duvall as it was recorded from the pedestrian bridge. Next, the 1218 is south of circleville. Arriving at Portsmouth, 1218 makes a stop to drop off passengers & picked new ones up, be turned on the wye, & heads west on the peavine route to Cincinnati which is since been a freight only line by Norfolk southern & later a short line called the Cincinnati eastern terminal. At arion, 1218 climbs between the gates in order to prevent a rockslide. Listen to the iconic hooter whistle. East of seaman, 1218 passes by a bunch of trees, then it's being paced east of Sardinia until it arrived in town. Next, 1218 crosses over the east fork little Miami river at the home base of Greg Scholl: Batavia. At east Norwood, 1218 makes a stop at GK tower. Already in Kentucky on Sunday June 10, 1218 is on erlanger hill at Fort Mitchell. Again there are no diesel helpers in sight. There is also more pacing going on & the view from the bridge is north of Lexington. At Lexington, 1218 makes a photo runby. In nicholasville, 1218 climbs uphill while approaching the crossing. Nicholasville is the location for former reader railroad 2-6-2 number 11 to be put on display after operating on the transkentucky transportation incorporated from 1989-1993. Back to 1218 however, it takes some slow orders at harrodsburg. Unfortunately, the engine operates between 1987-1991 due to higher maintenance costs. The locomotive whistles at Lawrenceburg station. Moments later, 1218 is West of Shelbyville. In the late afternoon sun, 1218 arrives at Louisville. On Monday June 11, the same day as 844 is heading from Kansas city to St. Louis as well as preparations of 819 in pine bluff, diesels tow the 1218 over a bridge at New Albany Indiana. The diesels are N&W 206, Southern 2533, & NS 2757. The destination is mount Vernon Illinois. The 206 blares it's horn at Duncan. With the trio of diesel helpers removed, 1218 is on its own again as it heads for mount Vernon. The scene at tunnel cut was used in tape 2 of today's steam across America from 1995. In Milltown, 1218 climbs uphill & whistles for the crossing. Then it leaves the tunnel at Marengo. Note the @ symbol in the title card as 1218 leaves the tunnel. Between tazwell & English, 1218 enters & exists another tunnel. In birdseye, 1218 whistles at a bend. Then there is some more pacing going on before the engine arrives at huntingburg where it will be serviced. The final 5 minutes of this program shows 1218's driving wheels taking a spin, Highballing West of Duff through a field, rolling through Ayrshire, whistling through Princeton station, & crossing the Wabash river while approaching Illinois. Plus it rolls through a field in Bellmont, & the sun is setting while approaching mount Vernon.

While pentrex captured the entire 1990 NRHS convention, other producers like Mark 1, Greg Scholl, Diverging clear, & even some from goodheart. The main line motion pictures version of the recently turned 30 year old event is still to be converted to DVD as time permits.

Overall, this is an amazing trip back in time to witness what the true meaning of big mainline steam railroading is all about before Amtrak's worst policy upgrades occur during the Dick Anderson years.

Additional remarks by Steamboy:
Narration: Could have used more.
Would kids enjoy this? Maybe.
Image quality: Excellent!
DVD Value: Good Value
Recommend to others? Definitely.

Did you find this review useful?