Historic Steam Engine Rolls Through Town

A rolling piece of American history passed through the village of Leetonia on Monday.

It’s known as the Nickel Plate 765, a 1944 Berkshire steam locomotive that’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The 765 thundered through Leetonia about 11 a.m. on its way to central Pennsylvania.

For the next couple of weeks, the locomotive will conduct a series of passenger excursions, including several trips up the famous Horseshoe Curve near Altoona.

The locomotive will return through the same route on May 30.

Several people showed up to watch the steam engine roll through the area and some took photos.

“The steam engine, to me, is a marvelous invention,” said Ray Lora, who owns a model of the Nickel Plate 765. “It does so much to try to keep itself going.”

Lora said he prefers the steam engine to trains with internal combustion engines.

“Internal combustion engines don’t do that,” he said. “It’s all hidden inside and you don’t see any of it. But with those old steam engines, it was right outside and you could feel it, smell it, hear it, so that’s why we like it.”

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