December 18th - 3rd Coast Photography

In 1957, 1225 was saved from the scrap yard by officials at Michigan State University who sought an outdoor monument to commemorate the steam-era. In 1969, a band of students set out to restore the locomotive to operable condition but eventually lost favor with university administrators who grew tired of looking at a torn-down locomotive on their property. As a result, the growing team of MSU rail enthusiasts began searching for of a new home and in 1983, 1225 was moved to the site of the former Ann Arbor Railroad’s steam shop. Restoration work continued until 1988 when the locomotive was reborn and ready for service, making it the largest operating steam locomotive in Michigan.

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