• NYCHRR Engine that pulled the Lincoln Funeral Train

  • Discussion relating to the NYC and subsidiaries, up to 1968. Visit the NYCS Historical Society for more information.
Discussion relating to the NYC and subsidiaries, up to 1968. Visit the NYCS Historical Society for more information.

Moderator: Otto Vondrak

  by polce cruiser
Been trying to find info about the NYCHRR steam engine that pulled the President Lincoln Funeral Train from NYC up the Hudson Valley to East Albany. I am in the process of re-creating that train and the depot in Peekskill when it stopped here on the way back (in HO gauge). I understand that the engines were changed every time the funeral train changed RR lines. I found a picture of the original engine that left Washington, DC, but I would like to have a picture and specs on the NYCHRR engine.
Thanks in advance for any help.
  by polce cruiser
The one I'm trying to build is O Gauge, not HO.

  by Cactus Jack
The locomotive is reported to have been the "Union" a Hudson River RR 4-4-0 with a nine car funeral train preseeded by a pilot train with engine "Constitution"

Departure was from 30th Street Terminal downtown and train went through to Albany

April 25, 1865
  by polce cruiser
Thank you quick reply and the information. Near as I can figure it has to be like the "General" of Civil War fame. Do you know if the 'Constitution" also a 4-4-0? Also what kind of cars were attached to it?
  by scottychaos
polce cruiser wrote:Thank you quick reply and the information. Near as I can figure it has to be like the "General" of Civil War fame. Do you know if the 'Constitution" also a 4-4-0? Also what kind of cars were attached to it?
Yes, it would have been a 4-4-0 of very similar style to the "General"..

here is a page:

http://www.buffalohistoryworks.com/linc ... -train.htm

That shows the locomotive that was used on the leg of the trip through Buffalo..(im not sure how many different locomotives were used for the whole trip..im sure its recorded somewhere..the trick is finding it!)

Its very likely all locomotives would have been 4-4-0's of 1860's vintage..
the most popular wheel arrangement of the era, and the wheel arrangeemt used on nearly all passenger trains of the era.

Here is a photo of the funeral train in Harrisburg:
http://www.explorepahistory.com/display ... imgId=1702
Probably a PRR engine.

And some more links:


http://www.ben.edu/resources/librarytou ... train.html

http://damerosehay.blogspot.com/2007/10 ... oledo.html


  by Cactus Jack
Baggage Car
3- coaches
3- Coach/sleepers - probably coaches modified by removing seats to acomodate bunks
The Lincoln Funeral Car
Philadelphia, Wilmington & Baltimore Officers Car

The Engineer up the Hudson was

Engineer was William Buchana, master mechanic at 30th Street. Arrival at Peekskill was a little after 5pm. Governor Reuben Fenton was among the dignitaries on board.
  by polce cruiser
Many thanks to you. That is a start.
  by polce cruiser
Again Many Thanks to Both Cactus Jack and Scott.

  by BaltOhio
Assuming Cactus Jack is correct about the locomotive name, and for whatever it's worth, the "Union" (HRRR #56) was built by Schenectady 1/61 (cn 236) and had 16x22" cylinders and 66" drivers. It was scrapped 11/89. Note that the railroad at that time was the Hudson River R.R. -- the NYC&HR didn't come into existence until 1869 and, in fact, the HRRR locomotives remained on their own roster until 1877.

I'm assuming that the engineer was William Buchanan, not Buchana, who was later the NYC&HR's CMO and father of the famous "999".

  by CarterB
The Albany to Buffalo portion was hauled by the NYCRR locomotive "Dean Richmond" on the NYCRR.

Here is some more info:

"Concerning the Lincoln Funeral Train-From the book The President Travels by
Train-Bob Withers. The train left the B&O station in Washington pulled by
engine no. 238 which was a Thatcher Perkins 4-4-0 built by the B&O in1865.
Sister engine no. 239 was the advance pilot and ran 10 minutes ahead of the
train. Behind the 238 were six passenger cars and a baggage car. Then the
Funeral car and then a business car for Mrs. Lincoln and the military escort.
The engineer of the 238 was Thomas Beckett and the Fireman was C.A. Miller.
At Harrisburg, PA the engine was changed to PRR No 331. Engineer was John E.
Miller. Arriving in Jersey City the hearse car and business cars were ferried
across the river to NY where the train was pulled by the Hudson RR locomotive
Union and the Constitution. At Albany, NY the engine was changed to NYC Dean
Richmond. The engineer was George W. Wrightson. At Erie, PA the engine
pulling the train was Cleveland, Painsville and Ashtabula's William Case with
engineer J.W. McGuire at the controls. In Cleveland the train was switched
by the engine the Dispatch, operated by Bull Simmons. The Nashville pulled
the train from Cleveland to Columbus. James Gourley was the engineer. At
Layfette, Ind. the locomotive Persian took over. Engineer was A. Rupert. This
was a New Albany and Chicago locomotive. ( side note- the pilot train was
pulled by an engine called the Rocket) At Michigan City, MI the train was
pulled by the Michigan Central Railroad by the Ranger. Engineer was Edward
Wilcox. At the Chicago and Alton Depot in Chicago the train was coupled to
the Chicago and Alton engine no. 58 with James Colting at the throttle.
Engine no. 40 was the pilot and was "driven" by Henry Russell."

Source : http://faculty.simpson.edu/RITS/www/mjd ... 07038.html
  by polce cruiser
Thanks for the info, I will have to try to get Mr. Withers book from the library. I have a RailKing station model of our former station here in Peekskill and the City has received funding and has begun complete restoration of the original station, just North of the present Peekskill station. In the recent dedication of the restoration, a large bronze statue was placed showing President-Elect Lincoln posed as if giving his remarks, when he stopped here on the way to Washington for his inauguration. For those who are interested here is the link; http://www.lincolnsociety.com/

  by polce cruiser
Thanks for the info.

Bring Back The 'Roomettes'
  by Richard1
Locomotives (all 4-4-0's) that pulled the funeral train across New York State and on to Cleveland were:

New York - Rensselaer -Hudson River RR - "Constitution," Pilot engine, "Union"
Albany - Utica - New York Central - Pilot engine, "Chauncey Vibbard," train, "Edward H. Jones"
Utica - Syracuse - New York Central - Pilot engine, "No. 4," train, "Z.C. Priest"
Syracuse - Rochester - New York Central - Pilot engine #202, train No. 248
Rochester - Buffalo - New York Central - Pilot engine #79, train, "Dean Richmond"
Buffalo -Erie - Buffalo & Erie - Pilot engine "Comet," train, "Atlas"
Erie - Cleveland - Pilot engine "Idaho," train, "William Case"

(This is a good contemporary account of the train trip from Albany to Buffalo)

New York Tribune, Friday, April 28, 1865

Our Dead President
The Funeral Progress Westward.
Scenes Along the New York Central
The Arrival at Buffalo.
Albany, Wednesday Afternoon. - The following named gentlemen accompany
the remains of the late President through the State of New York by
invitation of Gov. Fenton; Judges Davies and Porter of the Court of Appeals;
the Hon. Chauncey M. Depew, Secretary of State; Gens. Alexander W. Harney
and George S. Batchellor; E. Merritt and S.E. Marvin, Staff Officers; Col.
L.L. Doty of the Military Bureau; George Dawson of The Albany Journal, and
William Cassidy of the Argus and Atlas.
Gov. Fenton himself could not attend the party, owing to the fact that
the Legislature is on the eve of adjournment.
A delegation from Utica was also on board the train.
For a long distance after we left the dense assemblage at the railroad
station, thousands of people were passed, quiet observers of the fleeting
train - the men lifting their hats in view of the hearse-car containing the
remain of the truly lamented dead.
Far beyond the city limits we only see here and there a national flag
with the appropriate mourning badge before some solitary house, the
occupants being on the door step or piazza. Two small boys are on a hill
top holding in their hands miniature draped flags, and standing with heads
uncovered. Small groups on a hillside occasionally appear. At the cross
roads are men and women on country wagons. A party of about thirty young
girls with a few mail companions are in line on a lever green at the opening
of a wood. They all bow their heads in final adieu. The scenery is
beautiful, animated at various points with human feelings. Flags at half
mast continue top be seen at housed draped with mourning.
Schenectady, 4:45. - Here the people are gathered in large numbers in
the streets, on car-tracks, in railroad coaches, at the windows, on the
porches, house-tops, in the trees - every elevated position having an
The station is beautifully draped, and badges and flags on private
residences are draped in mourning. There is here a company of soldiers on
each side of the track. Ladies were seen shedding tears. The signal men bear
in their hands white square flags, bordered with black.
Amsterdam, 5:25. - Here another large crowd is gathered at the station,
at door fronts, and along the road. The scene is picturesque. The emblems
of mourning everywhere appear. Draped flags are thrown out and the bells are
Fonda, 5:55. - We stopped for a few minutes. Many persons were gathered;
minute guns were fired.
Palatine Bridge, 6:25. - Here the roads and both sides of the hills, and
the bridge, were lined with spectators of all ages and of both sexes. In
fact, every inhabitant of that locality seemed to be abroad. The depot was
elaborately draped in front with National flags, nearly associated with
black cloth. the roof of the building was festooned with long pieces of
black and white, the drapery elevated on the posts and gracefully drooping.
Minute guns were fired, while a dirge was performed by an instrumental band.
The interest of the living scene was enhanced by the natural beauty of
the romantic locality. There are individual demonstrations all along the
Fort Plain, 6:32.- A large National flag, edged with mourning, is
displayed, held at the four corners by as many lads. The scholars of he
Academy, with their teachers and a few others of the neighborhood, are
ranged in line - the men with heads uncovered.
St. Johnsville. 6:47. - We stopped here for thirteen minutes in order to
lunch. A fine collation has been provided at the railway station. The
waiters are 22 young ladies, dressed in black skirts with white waists, and
black scarfs on the left arm. They are admired as much for their attention
as for their personal appearance. They are volunteers for this occasion.
The officers in charge of the remains, in acknowledgment of their
kindness, extend to them the privilege of passing through the funeral car to
see the coffin.
Little Falls, 7:35. - We here have an interesting and affecting scene.
As at the previous places, many persons were assembled. the mournful music
of an instrumental band, blended with that of the village bells and minute
guns, added their heavy brass to the sacred concert.
The scenery here is represented to be of a romantic character, but its
beauty was clouded in the partial darkness of night. A note, of which the
following is a copy, was presented in behalf of the ladies:
Little Falls, April 26,
The ladies of Little Falls, through their Committee, present these
flowers and the shield, as an emblem of the protection which our beloved
President ever proved to the liberties of the American people.
The Cross of his ever faithful trust in God, and the Wreath was the
token that we mingle our tears with those of of an afflicted nation.
Mrs. S.M. Richmond Miss Minnie Hill
Mrs. E.W. Hopkins Miss Helen Brooks
Mrs. Power Green Miss Maria Brooks
Mrs. Jas. H. Buchlin Miss Mary Shaw
These artistically arranged flowers were then brought forth. There was a
surging of the multitude in that direction, and, in consequence, there was
some difficulty with the bearers of the delicate and expressive tribute of
affection in reaching the hearse-car; but the floral emblems were deposited
on the coffin, the band, meanwhile, performing a dirge. Women and men were
moved to tears at this solemn exhibition of heartfelt regard.
Herkimer, 7:50. - The crowd here was very large. On both sides of the
road the people in a body impulsively moved toward the hearse-car, when Mr.
Lafflin, mounting the platform of the car, addressed the assemblage, saying:
³The body of our departed friend is in the second car from the rear, and
if the citizens will retain their present positions they will be able to see
the car when the train again moves.²
This appeal partially produced the desired effect. Standing by the
station near the track, plainly visible in the glare of many lights, were
thirty six young ladies, representing the States, dressed in white, with
heavy black shashes. On their heads were crowns of flowers, and in their
hands small national flags draped with crape. The scene was truly beautiful.
Utica, 8:45. - The depot buildings are heavily draped and the flags at
half-mast. House fronts bear symbols of mourning.
It is slightly raining and not a few umbrellas are hoisted. There are
minute guns, funeral music and the tolling of bells.
It is said that there are at least 25,000 persons here. This does not
appear to be an under-estimate. The soldiery have much difficulty in keeping
the masses off the track, as at various other places. The ²moral² object of
interest is the hearse-car, and thither persons of both sexes are pressing.
The guests having been entertained by the Utica escort, which
accompanied the remains from Albany, take leave, and amid the excitement the
solemn music of the band is again heard; minute guns are fired and the bells
tolled. The instrumental band performing a plaintiff air, pass the
hearse-car, and soon is heard the rumbling of the moving train.
An application had previously been made for the remains to be exposed to
public view, but a telegram from Major-Gen. Dix informed the Hon. Roscoe
Conkling that the arrangements made at Washington did not admit of such a
Oriskany, 9:36. - The people are here assembled, and have kindled a
bonfire. Other places were passed during the night.
Syracuse, 11:15. - The depot was heavily draped with American flags, on
each side through the entire length. Each flag was trimmed with black and
decorated the sides f the building. Evergreen trees were placed at intervals
of about 10 feet along both sides of the depot. In addition to the ordinary
gas-lights, four large locomotive lamps illumined the interior, and four
others illuminated the track east and west. The hotels in the vicinity of
the depot and nearly all the private residences along the street through
which the railroad extended, were appropriately draped and illuminated. The
bells of the city tolled and minute guns were fired while the funeral train
was within the limits of the city.
A large police force was in attendance to preserve order, and a company
of Veteran Reserves were in attendance to pay honors to the illustrious
A band of music played a dirge as the train entered the depot, and a
choir of 100 voices sang appropriate hymns during the stoppage of the train.
The crowd of citizens was immense, nd large delegations came in from
Oswego and the surrounding towns. Thousands were standing for hours in the
depot and adjoining streets, waiting for the arrival of the funeral train.
The train was received by the assembled multitude with uncovered heads,
and with every manifestation of heartfelt sorrow.
A small bouquet was handed to the delegate from Idaho (the Hon. W.H.
Wallace), upon which were the appropriate words, ³The last tribute of
respect from Mary Virginia Raynor, a little girl 3 years of age, - Dated
Syracuse, April 26, 1865.² It was placed on the President¹s coffin by Gen.
Warners, 11:54. - Torchlights are burning on each side of the train.
Many hundreds of people are gathered in groups here, as at previous places,
with uncovered heads. A.L. Dick, General Superintendent of Telegraph, is on
the train.
Memphis, 12 o¹clock midnight. - The train passes onward. Many spectators
here bearing torchlights. Bonfires blazing.
Jordan, 12:14 - Large fires and throngs of citizens are seen.
Weedsport, 12:26. - Large crowds of citizens are gathered here and
bonfires are blazing.
Port Byron, 12:40. - The Depot Agent, A.M. Green, has draped the depot
with mourning. Two large American flags are flying at half-mast, and
numerous chintz lanterns light up the depot.
Savannah, 1 a.m. - Many spectators are gathered here and bonfires blaze
one each side of the depot.
Clyde, 1:15 a.m. - The depot is trimmed with mourning. There is a
large demonstration here. Guns are fired, bells tolled.
Lyons, 1:20. - A very large number of persons is gathered at the
station to view the train as it passes along. The train moves onward.
Newark, Palmyra, Macedon and Fairport are successively passed. Bonfires
are seen blazing, flags draped with mourning, and many spectators gathered
Rochester, 3:20 a.m. - As we enter Rochester minute guns are fired and
the bells tolled.
On the north side of the railroad station were drawn up in line the 54th
Regiment N.G., 1st company of Veterans Reserves and hospital soldiers, and a
battery attached to the Twenty-fifth Brigade, and the 1st company of Union
Blues. The Independent and Newman¹s regimental band played a funeral dirge.
On the south side were Mayor with 25 members of the Common Council of
Rochester, together with Gen. John Williams and staff, Major Lee,
commanding the post, with is corps of assistants, and Gen. Martindale and
We stop 10 minutes at Rochester. The people are abroad in full force.
The streets in the vicinity of the stopping place are crowded. Houses are
seen draped with the usual emblems and draped flags. We soon pass the
intermediate stations are at
Batavia, 5 a.m. - Large masses of people appear on the road. Our party
has been increased by the addition of ex-President Fillmore and Messrs. J.A.
Verplanck, J. Gallastin, James Sheldon, S.S. Jewett, Henry Martin, Philip
Dorsheimer, J.P. Stevens, E.S. Prosser, John Wilkinson, Henry Morrison, N.K.
Hopkinson, on behalf of the Mayor of Buffalo, who was prevented from
being personally present, to tender the hospitalities of the city to
the party accompanying the remains of the late president.
Marked attention was extended by Mr. H.N. Chittenden, General
Superintendent, and Mr. E. Foster, Jr., and Z. C. Priest, Assistant
Superintendent of the Eastern Division, and Messrs. W. G. Lapham and J.
Tillinghast, Sperintendents of the Western Division; also by J.P. Dukehart,
connected with the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Company, who is in charge of
the train as through conductor from Washington to Springfield, with Homer
P. Williams and Samuel Holdreth as assistants.
Buffalo, 7 a.m. - We are now at Buffalo. Not the slightest accident has
happened on the way from Washington, owing to the admirable arrangements,
and the faithful and experienced officers in charge of the train. We were
met at the depot by large concourse of people, the men with uncovered
The funeral party were entertained at breakfast at Bloomer¹s dining
saloon, by the city authorities.
The procession was formed between 7 and 8 o¹clock, and proceeded toward
St. James Hall, under a civil and military escort, in company with the
party which had followed the remains from Washington.
The coffin was prominently in view of the very many persons who lined the
streets through which the cortege passed.
The hearse was heavily covered with black cloth, surmounted with an
arched roof and tastefully trimmed with white satin and silver lace. An
extensive display of the military and civilians was omitted in view of the
fat that Buffalo had a funeral procession on the day the obsequies took
place at Washington.
The procession reached the young Men¹s Association building at 9:35
a.m. the body was taken from the funeral car and carried by soldiers up into
St. James Hall and deposited on the dais in the presence of the accompanying
officers, the guards of honor, and the Union Continentals, commanded by N.K.
The remains were placed under a crape canopy, extending from the ceiling
to the floor. The space was lit by a large chandelier. In the gallery
outside the canopy was the Buffalo St. Cecilia Society, and Amateur American
Music Association, who, as the remains were brought in sang with deep pathos
the dirge, ³Rest Spirit, rest,² affecting every heart and moving many to
The Society then placed an elegantly-formed harp, made of choice white
flowers, at the head of the coffin as tribute rom them to the honored dead.
Shortly after this the public were admitted. Ex-President Fillmore was among
the civilians escorting the remains to St. James Hall. Also Company D, 74th
Regiment, Capt. S.G. Bowles.
This Company acted as an escort to President Lincoln four years ago
from and to the depot, on his way to Washington. They will escort his
remains from Buffalo to Cleveland.
The Rev. Dr. Gurley, who officiated at the funeral in Washington,
accompanies the funeral party to this city.
The following named members of Congress reached Buffalo, with the train:
Senators James W. Nye of Nevada and George Williams of Oregon, accompanied
by George T. Brown, the Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate; Representatives E.B.
Washburne and S.M. Collum, Robert C. Schenek, Illinois; Charles E. Phelps,
Maryland; James B. Sherman, California; Samuel Hooper, Massachusetts;
William A. Newell, New Jersey; White Forrie, Michigan; Sidney Clark,
Kansas; Killion V. Whaley, Western Virginia; Burt Van Horn, New York; and
ex-Representatives Isaac N. Arnold of Illinois; Joseph Bailey, Pennsylvania;
W.H. Wallace of idaho; Augustus Frank and John Ganson of New York; with M.
Gordway the Sergeant-at-Arms of the House of Representatives.
Second Dispatch.
Buffalo, Thursday, April 27, 1865.
Gustavus A. Newell of New Jersey, has been invited to accompany the
remains to Springfield.
The following are the names of the Army and Navy officers in the funeral
party: Brig. Gen. E.D. Townsend of the Adjutant General¹s Department,
representing the Secretary of War; Maj. Gen. David Hunter, U.S. Vols.;
Rear-Admiral Davis, U.S.N.; Brevet Major Gen. J. G. Barnard, U.S. Vols.;
Brig. Gen. Ramsey, Ordinance Department; Brig. Gen. Eaton,
Commissary-General of Subsistence; Capt. Taylor, U.S.N.; Brig. Gen. Howe,
Chief of Artillery; Brig. Gen. Caldwell, Brig. Gen. McCallum, Superintendent
of U.S. Military Railroads; Brig. Ekin, Quartermaster¹s Department; Major
Field, U.S. Marine Corps.
As erroneous statements have been in the press, it is necessary to say
on the authority of the embalmer and undertaker, that no perceptible change
has taken place in the body of the late President since we left Washington.
The Washington physicians removed a part of the brain only for the autopsy
but this was replace, so that no part of the body whatever is now deficient.
The remains were visited through the day from 9:30 this morning until 8
o¹clock this evening by an immense number of persons. The arrangements
generally are pronounced to be better than elsewhere on the route. Great
credit is therefore due to the Committee who perfected them.
The hospitalities were everywhere liberally extended, both by the
corporate authorities and individual citizens.
During the morning there was placed at the foot of the coffin an anchor
of while camelins, from the ladies of the Unitarian Church of Buffalo. A
cross of white flowers was also laid upon the coffin. At the request of
Major General Dix and others, the officers of the St. Cecilia Society this
afternoon repeated the dirge, which was sung, with, if possible, more solemn
and touching effect than in the morning.
The procession, with the remains, left St. James Hall at about 8:45,
escorted to the depot by the military, followed by a large crowd. The depot
was surrounded by persons anxious to get a last view of the coffin. The
train left at about 10 o¹clock for Cleveland.

Buffalo Daily Courier
Saturday, April 29, 1865

    Conveyance of the Remains of President Lincoln to Cleveland. - Our space yesterday morning did not permit us to speak of the train which conveyed the remains of President Lincoln and the Guard of Honor from this city to Cleveland, and which was employed last night to bear them to Columbus. The Pilot Engine was the “Comet,” Mr. Gus Catlin, engineer, and was under the immediate charge of Assistant Superintendent Williams. It was handsomely decorated with flags, flowers, and tastefully draped with white and black crape.
    The train engine was the “Atlas,” in charge of Mr. John Hart, one of the most accomplished engineers in the country. It was handsomely trimmed with flags, and crape in festoons, and adorned with bouquets. The interior of the cab was concealed from outside by a monster American flag, and the light shining through it produced a fine effect. The cars, one of them a new and splendid sleeping car put upon the road for the first time, were decorated in exceeding good taste. The outside was draped with deep festoons of black apalachee, trimmed with silver braids and looped up with beautiful rosettes which were fastened with silvered metal stars. The festoons on the insides were of lighter character, and swept gracefully from the raised roofs to the sides of the cars. The baggage car had two monster stars in cloth on either side, in the centre of which were black and white rosettes fastened with silvered metal stars. Altogether the decorations, according to our memorandum book, were as chaste and appropriate as could well be conceived.
    The Train was in charge of conductor Isaac Morehead, and was accompanied as far as Cleveland by Superintendent Grant.
    The most elaborate demonstration on the line of the road, as the train passed along, was that made at Dunkirk. The depot was lighted in a brilliant manner, and on a platform were thirty six young ladies dressed in white, wearing black sashes, and bearing banners in their hands, as they knelt. At Erie, owing to a mis-apprehension of the citizens, the demonstration was scarcely in keeping with the size of the city.