Pennsylvania Conventional Scale 4-6-2 K-4 #5436 (Tuscan)
Tuscan K4: Fact or Fantasy?
In the 1930s the Pennsylvania Railroad painted ten K4s Tuscan red, matching their passenger fleet and highlighting their Red Arrow service from New York through Pittsburgh to Detroit. Making that statement is – thanks to the internet – much like a raucous family dinner with lots of voices, lots of opinions and a variety of decibel levels.
Let’s start with the ‘voice of authority’ from secondary research sources: two books by Alvin Staufer. In Pennsy Power in 1962, Staufer states that a few were painted Tuscan but can’t say for sure which. In his 1978 The Many Faces of the Pennsy K4, he writes that there were ten and three of them were engines 2761, 5409, and 5436.
A number of Tuscan K4s from HO scale to 6 1/2-foot butane-fired live steam versions have been on the market wearing the road numbers cited by Staufer. Not so fast, says an online skeptic: Staufer has numerous errors in Pennsy Power. There is no proof of one let alone ten. And therefore it is not a fact but speculation.
But, retorts a believer, who quotes the Pennsylvania Railroad Technical and Historical Society as saying, At least one K4 was painted in Tuscan red in the 1930's for a short time.
I have seen proof, a color photograph, claims a third. At last, a primary source!
No color photography at the time, another voice chimes in, you must be thinking of a painting at the Altoona Museum. Perhaps or perhaps not, Kodachrome was introduced in 1936.
Speaking of the Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum, layout builder Clarke Dunham included a Tuscan K4 on the museum’s layout because the rail historian on the project allowed this as probable…besides, it's a really eye-catching paint scheme.
On that, we can all agree. Now, what's for dessert?
- Smoke Unit
K-4 Smoking Whistle Addendum
Conventional K-4 Pacific
- SKU: 6-11320
- Dimensions: Length: 21"
- Gauge: Standard O Scale
- price: 749.99
- year: 2011
- rail line: Pennsylvania
- Minimum Radius: O-36
- Catalog Year: 2013
- Catalog Title: Lionel 2013 Signature Edition
- Road Number: 5436
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