Donate to the D&R #9 Cosmetic Restoration

Created using the Donation Thermometer plugin$9,999‘Thanks$3,565‘Thanks36%

Mid-Continent Railway Museum has announced plans to begin the cosmetic restoration of the Dardanelle & Russellville #9 steam locomotive starting in Spring 2021. The restoration will be more than just slapping on a new coat of paint. It will involve a number of steps, each involving expenses:  grinding, stripping, and blasting of the locomotive to provide a clean, rust-free surface, repair/replacement of deteriorated wood, sheet metal, and other custom components, primer, paint, and associated supplies, and finally the creation of interpretive display materials.

To complete this project, your help will be needed!  Mid-Continent has begun fundraising for the project, with a goal of raising $9,999 to support the #9. If you wish to see Mid-Continent’s oldest locomotive made beautiful and ready for public display once again, please consider making a contribution today.

Mid-Continent Railway Museum is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. All donations are 100% tax-deductible and a donation acknowledgment letter will be provided.

If you wish to become a project volunteer, please send an email to Volunteer sessions are anticipated to begin in spring 2021.

Fundraising progress thermometer last updated: 02/17/2021.

steam locomotive no. 9

D&R #9 in service at North Freedom, June 1969. Jim Neubauer photo.

D&R #9 Cosmetic Restoration Announced

Dardanelle & Russellville #9 is in need of a refresh. MCRM photo. 2018.

So, here we just added another steam locomotive project to the list. Now that’s exciting! The Dardanelle & Russellville #9 is probably the most worthy restoration project the Mid-Continent Railway Museum’s Steam Department will undertake. Even though it will only be a cosmetic restoration (at this time), the Steam Department is going to make her look like she’s ready for service.

Jason R., his 9-year old son Fletcher, along with Fletcher’s grandfather Jerry, are taking a lead role in the D&R #9’s cosmetic restoration.

This project isn’t just exciting because it’s the D&R #9, it’s also going to be lead by one of our newest members along with his nine-year-old son. I am setting this project up for our younger members, along with our older members, to experience the feeling of accomplishment and camaraderie when everyone is working for the one goal. Plus get to “play” with REAL trains and perform a service that will not just benefit the museum, but also the volunteer. These are my memories of when my father started bringing me to Mid-Continent back in 1966 and the D&R #9 was the daily steamer. This just didn’t happen to me, but many a young boy and girl. Ask MCRM members Bill Burhmaster, Ken Ristow, Wally Tisler, the list goes on. Generational participation is what makes the Mid-Continent Railway Museum one of a kind!

D&R #9 smokestack repair.

Currently, the 9’s smokestack has been repaired, the cab windows and doors have been removed for restoration, and fundraising has commenced. After the first of the year [2021] I will update you on a timeline for starting and completing the 9’s cosmetic restoration. So, please come back and check up on the happenings with our beloved 9.

Steve Pahl, Sr.
General Foreman of Steam Power
Mid-Continent Railway Museum

A Personal Photo Album

History of Dardanelle & Russellville #9

Dardanelle & Russellville #9 is the oldest steam locomotive in Mid-Continent Railway Museum’s collection. It was built in 1884 by the Burnham, Parry, Williams & Co. (commonly called Baldwin) at Philadelphia, PA. It was originally built for the 196-mile New Orleans & North Eastern Railroad as their locomotive #232.

The locomotive later found a home on an Arkansas shortline, Dardanelle & Russellville Railroad. There it was renumbered to #9. It served there until 1963, when it was moved on its own wheels to Mid-Continent Railway Museum. It took over for #1385 as the main duty engine at Mid-Continent in 1964 and remained in frequent use until the 1970s. It briefly returned to service for one summer in 1991 before again being pulled from service in need of boiler and tender work.

More history and photos available on the D&R #9 Roster Page

Donate to the D&R #9 Fund

Funds will be needed to cover the cost of materials used as part of #9’s cosmetic restoration. You can donate toward this project with a credit/debit card by using the Donate button or by sending a printable donation form along with a check (be sure to write in “D&R #9” in the Special Projects portion of the form). All donations to Mid-Continent are tax-deductible.

Become a Project Volunteer

This project is just getting underway. We’ll share more information about how you join the MCRM Steam Team in future updates. Stay tuned!

More Photos of D&R #9