Before & After

Help Make ATSF #59 Operational!

The Museum of the American Railroad in Frisco, Texas has undertaken one of the most important Diesel Restoration Projects of the 21st Century- The Restoration of Santa Fe Alco PA #59L!

Delivered to the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway in October of 1948, she carried serial number 76535, and cost just over $217,000 for the single 2000 horsepower cab unit- although she was sold as a "cab-booster-cab" 6000 horsepower set costing $643,347.00

The Museum of the American Railroad  took final delivery of this historical locomotive from it's temporary storage on March 12, 2014- and work has been underway since to help bring her back to her former Warbonnet glory.


(click to enlarge)

Four Steps to Operation:

Step 1) Acquire PA Locomotive (done!)
Step 2) Obtain mechanical components (underway)
Step 3) Transplant components and rebuild PA #59 to operational status
Step 4) Cosmetically restore PA carbody to Santa Fe Warbonnet

Components we are actively seeking include a 12-251 prime mover, alternator/ main generator, turbocharger, air compressor, traction motor blowers, signal bell, control contactors, 26L brake equipment, radiators sanding equipment and truck parts including wheel sets and traction motors.

Each of the 4 steps listed require cash to some degree, generous donations will significantly move the project forward by allowing us to complete the purchase of both needed components and pay for professional services related to repairing the car body of the locomotive.

All donated funds (minus credit-card processing fees) will be placed in a  restricted fund- solely for the restoration of PA #59. Indiegogo is hosting this fundraiser at no charge due to our 501(c)(3) status.

America's PA Restoration Committee

Robert Willis - Committee Chair
Museum of the American Railroad

Don "Alco Doc" Colangelo - PA Chief Technical Advisor
CMO of Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad

Allen Rider
Retired Manager Locomotive Engineering at Norfolk Southern / Motive Power Technical Expert

Tom Mack
Chief Technology Officer at VeRail Technologies, Inc.

Doyle McCormack
Nickel Plate Road PA #190

In addition to these committee members, we have a great team of supporters in the railroad industry involved and eager to make this "Make America's PA Operational" a reality!

Support Our Restoration Effort!

Donate Here

Our PayPal
(PayPal account not required; you may donate directly using a credit card!)

Donate via mail

Museum of the American Railroad
ATTN PA 59 Fundraiser
6455 Page Street
Frisco, Texas 75034

Our Museum Website

Museum of the American Railroad

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Restoration of the Santa Fe Chief, Alco PA #59

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:Where will you obtain components to make PA 59L operational?
A: When the locomotive was upgraded in the 1970's, many modern components were used, which are still widely available today.

Q: How will you repair the structural issues with the car body?
A: Before moving forward with the Project 59L fundraising campaign the Museum obtained the servives of Mr.R. Thomas Scott of Scott Consulting LLC to perform a complete mechanical inspection and evaluation of the locomotive structure. This was done in the Fall of 2015, and his report was issued in December of that year. His report confirms what others have said, the locomotive is in fact a viable candidate for restoration. In 2016 we received the $10,000 TRAINS Magazine award for restoration work. The focus of the grant will be repairing the damages areas of the cab, which will have a huge impact on the presentation of the locomotive

Q: What is the timeline for completion of the project?
A: As mentioned, there are several steps to bringing this project to fruition. Structural repairs, cosmetic restoration of components, aquisition of others as needed- both at cost and Pro Bono donations-  are all underway. The biggest time factor will involve raising the funds for major repairs and the purchase of an Alco 12-251 Diesel engine. As funds are raised, we will work dilligently to have progress made towards completion of the project. Our Museum prides itself on making donations go as far as possible by working closely with contractors, vendors, and doing a great deal of work with volunteer craft workers. 

Q: Is my donation tax-deductible?
A: Yes. Museum of the American Railroad is a Texas tax-exempt non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. You will also receive a letter acknowledging your donation for your records.