With continuation of small town Paducah, KY, – they have a great history with the railroad boom!
Wikipedia: The Illinois Central Railroad began construction of their largest locomotive workshop at Paducah in 1924. Over a period of 190 days, a large ravine between Washington and Jones Streets was filled with 44,560 carloads of dirt to enlarge the site to include 23 buildings. The eleven million dollar project was completed in 1927 as the fourth largest industrial plant in Kentucky. It became the largest employer in Paducah with 1,075 employees in 1938. The Paducah shops were converted to maintain diesel locomotives as steam locomotives were replaced through the 1940’s and 1950’s; and a nationally known rebuilding program for aging diesel locomotives from Illinois Central and other railroads began in 1967. The shops became part of the Paducah and Louisville Railway in 1986; and are operated by VMV Paducahbilt.
The small plaque in front of the great engine reads: To perpetuate memories of the days of the Steam Locomotive, this engine was presented to the City of Paducah in 1963 by the Illinois Central Railroad Co.
Note the mural painting in this last photo? A prelude to tomorrow’s posting.