35 Pueblitos Road Belen, New Mexico 87002
The Western Museum of Mining and Industry, north of Colorado
Springs, Colorado, has in its permanent collection a magnificent 25
foot tall walking beam steam engine.
The 120 HP engine, built in the early 1890’s in England,
first saw duty at the Vaucluse Gold Mine near Fredricksburg,
Virginia. The engine powered the ore crushing stamps as well as the
water pumps that drained the mine, fed the boiler, and pumped the
water for the ore separators.
The 1864 Civil War ‘Battle of the Wilderness’ shut down
and destroyed the mine and leveled the surrounding forest. But,
somehow, the engine managed to remain erect until 1931 when it was
removed to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. The Ford
Museum donated it to the Western Museum of Mining and Industry in
December of 1983 where it now stands.
The museum has dozens of other interesting exhibits including a
size medium-large, double expansion Corliss engine. The museum is
just east of 1-25 at the exit for the Air Force Academy’s North
Stop in and tell the folks you read about the walking beam in
Iron Men Album.