"UP Big Boy 4005"

by Michael Boss
Casein on Rag Board
16" X 22"

From the Collection of Elaine Hartman

Union Pacific's Big Boys were built by Alco Locomotive Works in Schenectady, New York. Beginning in 1941, twenty-five were completed by 1945.

They were designed and built for one reason: to haul vast amounts of tonnage up Sherman Hill to the Wasatch Range just east of Ogden, Utah. Big Boys eliminated the use of helper engines, which were expensive and took valuable time to link up with the freight consist.

The Big Boys stayed busy until 1957 when their use started to wane. The last run of a Big Boy was in 1962. Big Boy 4005 is now in the Forney Museum of Transportation in Denver, Colorado.

The painting was commissioned for a greeting card in 2003.