This meticulously detailed scale model of Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad Corporation Engine 2823 was used for demonstration and advertising purposes in the company's headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska. The CB & Q, known to its passengers simply as the Q or the Burlington, served a major portion of the Midwest and mountain states and advertised itself as "The Way West."
The model of this engine type 4-6-2 locomotive was purchased from a retired CB & Q shop worker more than fifty years ago. He indicated that it had been produced in the Burlington railroad's shops and displayed in its headquarters in Omaha in the early 1930s. This provenance is supported by the model's original plywood shipping crate, included with this lot, which carries labels addressed from the CB & Q in Burlington, Iowa to its offices in Omaha, and a handwritten paper label on the leatherette handles that reads: J.C. Harkness; Burlington, Ia; "Advertising".
The model, which was intended to show all of locomotive's moving parts, is exact in every detail. The train and tender sit on a section of track and are supported from beneath so the wheels do not touch the track. A rheostat, which is currently disconnected, moved the wheels so that the train looked like it was in motion although it remained stationary.
Two photographs of CB & Q Engine 2823 are in the collection of the Denver Public Library; one, taken in Omaha on August 28, 1933, shows the engine pulling three cars, two of which carry passengers.
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