Union Pacific’s Big Boy No. 4014 will embark on The Big Boy 2021 Tour next month to celebrate railroad heritage and the communities Union Pacific serves – a journey in which the train will pass through Luling twice.
Twenty-five Big Boys were built exclusively for Union Pacific, the first of which was delivered in 1941 to handle the steep terrain between Cheyenne and Ogden. Of the eight still in existence, No. 4014 is the world’s only operating Big Boy. The other seven can be found on display in Wyoming, Texas, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Pennsylvania and Missouri.
No. 4014 will leave the Steam Shop in Cheyenne, Wyoming on Aug. 5 and make brief 15-minute whistle-stops in communities across Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming. Two of these stops will be at the Gassen Street Crossing in Luling on Aug. 20 from 12:30 p.m. to 12:45 p.m. and Aug. 22 from 10:55 a.m. to 11:10 a.m.
The locomotive will also be on display in many cities during the tour, including New Orleans on Aug. 21.
This is the first tour since the locomotive was restored for 2019’s “Great Race” tours, which celebrated the 150th anniversary of the transcontinental railroad’s completion. The multi-year restoration took place at Union Pacific’s steam shop in Cheyenne, Wyoming, following a retirement that spanned 60 years.
“Weighing in at 1.2 million pounds, the Big Boy makes a big impression in communities it visits, reminding us of bygone days and the important role the railroad continues to play in our global economy,” Scott Moore, Union Pacific’s senior vice president – corporate relations and chief administrative officer, said. “This summer, we are proud to announce that the Big Boy will be back to tour through 10 of the states and hundreds of the communities which Union Pacific serves.”
A complete list of overnight and whistle stops, including ticketing information for the New Orleans display, is available at www.upsteam.com.