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Ely-Thomas Lumber Company No. 6

Pine Creek's 32-ton, two-truck Shay was completed 30 September 1927 by the Lima Locomotive Works (s/n 3314, right) for the Phoenix Utility Company in Waterville, North Carolina, as their No. 9. On 18 December 1929 she was purchased by the Fontana Mining Company in Swain County, North Carolina. After being sold to the North Carolina Exploration Company on 24 March 1931, she became the property of the Champion Fibre & Paper Company of Fire Creek, North Carolina, on 5 April 1944 (and joined her twin sister, No. 11). The Ely-Thomas Lumber Company in Jetsville, West Virginia, then bought her on 6 August 1947 to become their No. 6 (below).

In 1955, Edgar T. Mead Jr., a noted narrow-gauge historian, bought the Shay for $2,500 and leased her to the Pine Creek Railroad Museum. She arrived on July 30, 1955. She ran at the Allaire State Park site (below) until 2002, when she was taken offline for repairs (bottom).

Incidentally, the headlight she currently wears is from the Bridgton and Saco River Railroad #6, a long-gone two-foot-gauge Forney. However, there are some curious stories circulating about her whistle. One suggests that it came from the Mayfair Dress Company in South River, New Jersey, managed at the time by the late Jay Wulfson, co-founder of the Pine Creek Railroad Museum. Another is that No. 6 provided the whistle sound effect heard at the beginning of The Flintstones. Both of these tales are pure fiction.

Weight: 55,300 pounds
Gauge: 36 inches
Drivers: 29 inches
Cylinders: 8 x 12 inches (x 3)
Boiler: 37.25 inches
Gear ratio: 3.017
Fuel capacity: 1.75 tons (coal)
Water capacity: 1000 gallons

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