It was during this time that, in conjunction with the then Electro-Motive Corporation the Zephyr was born, which would revolutionize train travel. These articulated trainsets were streamlined, lightweight designs that would be powered by the new diesel engine,
which allowed for efficiencies far beyond what steam could provide.
The first of these trainsets, cast in all stainless steel, was the Zephyr #9900
and after touring across the country made its famous nonstop trip
between Denver and Chicago in mere hours, an unheard of accomplishment
for its day. Not surprisingly this alone coupled with the trains high
speeds made the Zephyr an instant hit with the public and the
Burlington would go on to order several of these trainsets. Of course,
the Burlington loved the streamliners as well due to their extremely
inexpensive costs to both build and maintain.
While the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy operated a number of Zephyrs including the Twin Cities Zephyr, Mark Twain Zephyr, Denver Zephyr, and Ozark State Zephyr perhaps the railroad’s most famous was the California Zephyr
which was jointly run with the Rio Grande and Western Pacific. The
train traveled through some of the most spectacular scenery in the
country and it was not surprising that it continued to do well even when
train travel by the 1960s and 1970s was waning with the public. The
train would eventually be operated only by the Rio Grande (which was
then renamed as the Rio Grande Zephyr) and after it relinquished the train to Amtrak in the 1980s it was not only retained but also returned to its original name.
|An assortment of Burlington Geeps led by GP30 #968 are clipping right along with their manifest freight in tow through Lisle, Illinois on May 24, 1964.|
While Budd retired from the CB&Q in 1949 his legacy was far reaching.
Always looking for ways to cut costs and improve service he oversaw the
beginnings of switching the railroad to diesel power and the Burlington
had nearly 2,000 miles of track under Centralized Traffic Control (CTC)
by the mid-1960s! The railroad, however, was destined to be merged with
its allying roads the Great Northern (which controlled the CB&Q);
Spokane, Portland & Seattle; and Northern Pacific. It was simply a
matter of when, as many speculated.
Please Click Here To Return To The Main Fallen Flags Section
|CB&Q VO-1000 #9367 wears the road's classic Everywhere West slogan as the unit sits at the Western Avenue Yard in Chicago on September 14, 1965.|
Diesel Locomotive Roster
The American Locomotive Company
|The Burlington became popular in the 1960s for hosting numerous steam-powered excursions by sparing a few units from retirement to do so. Seen here is Class O-5a 4-8-4 #5632 speeding westbound through Hinsdale, Illinois on April 28, 1963.|
The Baldwin Locomotive Works
The Electro-Motive Corporation/Electro-Motive Division
|F3A||116A-128A, 116D-129D, 130A-138A, 130D-138D, 160A-162A, 9960A-9962A, 9960D-9962D||1947-1949||54|
|F3B||116B-138B, 116C-138C, 160B-162B, 160C-162C, 9960B-9962B||1947-1949||55|
|NW2||603, 605-606 (FW&DC)||1941-1946||3|
|F7A||700A-702A, 700D-702D (C&S)||1950||6|
|F7B||700B-702B, 700C-702C (C&S)||1950||6|
|F7A||750A-752A, 750D-752D (FW&DC)||1950||6|
|F7B||750B-752B, 750C-752C (FW&DC)||1950||6|
|Zephyr Trainset||9900-9905, 9906A-9907A, 9906B-9907B, 9908||1934-1939||11|
|E5A||9909, 9910A-9912A, 9913, 9914A, 9914B, 9915A, 9915B||1940-1941||8|
|E7A||9916A-9937A, 9916B-9936B, 9949||1945-1949||44|
|E8A||9937B, 9938A-9949A, 9938B-9948B, 9964-9969||1950-1952||30|
|E8A||9981A, 9981B (FW&DC)||1952||2|
|E9A||9985A-9989A, 9985B-9989B, 9990-9995||1954-1956||16|
|Burlington Class O-1a 2-8-2 Mike #4960 is all shined up as she leads an excursion through Zearing, Illinois on a cool March 21, 1965.|
Steam Locomotive Roster
|A-1 Through A-6||American||4-4-0|
|D-1 Through D-7||Consolidation||2-8-0|
|G-1 Through G-10||Switcher||0-6-0|
|H Through H-4||Mogul||2-6-0|
|K-1 Through K-10||American||4-6-0|
|M-1 Through M-3||Santa Fe||2-10-2|
|O-1 Through O-4||Mikado||2-8-2|
|P-1 Through P-6||Atlantic||4-4-2|
|R-1 Through R-5||Prairie||2-6-2|
|S-1 Through S-3||Pacific||4-6-2|
|Another view of 4-8-4 #5632 shows the unit wearing a special all-gold livery on May 24, 1964 in celebration of the opening of Burlington's main line between Chicago and Aurora.|
Notable Passenger Trains
North Coast Limited
Afternoon Zephyr: (Chicago - Twin Cities)
Ak-Sar-Ben Zephyr: (Chicago - Lincoln)
American Royal Zephyr: (Chicago - Kansas City)
Blackhawk: (Chicago - Twin Cities)
Exposition Flyer: Operated in Junction with the Western Pacific and Rio Grande between Chicago and Oakland until the debut of the California Zephyr in 1949.
|Running elephant-style are three CB&Q E8As led by #9973 as they hustle a passenger train under the signal tower at Westmont, Illinois on July 30, 1965.|
Kansas City Zephyr: (Chicago - Kansas City)
Mainstreeter: Operated between Chicago and Seattle via allying roads Northern Pacific and Spokane, Portland & Seattle.
Morning Zephyr: (Chicago - Twin Cities)
Nebraska Zephyr: (Chicago - Lincoln)
Pioneer Zephyr: (West Quincy - Hannibal, Missouri)
Sam Houston Zephyr: (Dallas - Houston)
Texas Zephyr: (Denver - Dallas)
Western Star: Operated between Chicago and Seattle via allying roads Great Northern and Spokane, Portland & Seattle.
Zephyr Rocket: Operated between Minneapolis and St. Louis in conjunction with the Rock Island.
|While never one of EMD's more popular models, the Burlington owned 16 SD24s; pictured here is #501 leading three GP30s as they zip a freight train through Downers Grove, Illinois on July 2, 1965. Note the numerous classic cars in the scene.|
While trying for years this did not
come to fruition until 1970 when the ICC finally granted permission to
do so forming the then Burlington Northern. The BN, however, would last
only 25 years before merging with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe
to become the Burlington Northern Santa Fe, today known as simply the
BNSF Railway. Even though the Burlington is no
more today it continues to live on as almost all of its main lines are
still important routes for its successor. Forever recognized as one of
the best managed railroads of all time perhaps it is best remembered by
the communities it served as a down home company who deeply cared about
its roots, something all but lost in today’s Class I systems.
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Other Classic Railroads Of The Midwest
CA&E, "The Roarin' Elgin"
C&NW, "Route Of The '400'"
Rock Island, "Route Of The Rockets"
D&M, "The Turtle Line"
DT&I, "We Have The Connections"
GB&W, "The Green Bay Route"
IC, "The Main Line Of Mid-America"
IT, "The Road Of Personalized Services"
IHB, "Connects With All Chicago Railroads"
CMStP&P, "Route Of The Hiawathas"
Monon, "The Hoosier Line"
Nickel Plate, "High Speed Service"
"Ship Soo To And Through The Upper Midwest"
St. Louis Southwestern
MN&S, "The Dan Patch Line"
M&StL, "The Peoria Gateway"
The Missabe Road
MoPac, "Route Of The Eagles"
CGW, "The Corn Belt Route"
DW&P, "Delivered With Pride"
BRC, "The Belt"
EJ&E, "Chicago Outer Belt"
KCS, "Route Of The Southern Belle"
Lake Superior & Ishpeming
Wabash, "Follow The Flag"
Santa Fe..."All The Way!"
St. Louis-San Francisco Railway
EP&SW, "The Southwestern Route"
SP, "Route Of The Daylights"
UP, "We Will Deliver"