Rolling Stock

Engine 12 approaching the station, c.1910

Primarily, CBR stock consisted of 12 steam locomotives, the majority type 4-4-0. Most engines were acquired secondhand from other railroads, but Nos. 2 through 5 were purchased new from Pittsburgh Locomotive Works.

Many new passenger and baggage cars were ordered from the St. Charles Car Company of Missouri in 1898. The cars were of wooden construction with toilets, baggage racks, kerosene lighting and steam heat. The outsides were painted Tuscany red with black trim and the name “Chesapeake Beach” was in gold-leaf lettering. The coaches contained 40 swing-over rattan seats. Four were chair cars that were named Durango, Del Norte, Saguache, and Alamosa, with 72 wicker seats each. Another four were parlor cars named Rico, Dolores, Silverton, and Ouray, with 36 wicker and 36 plush seats each. The Dolores is the only known surviving piece of rolling stock, and maintained on our museum grounds.

Otto Mears had a luxurious private car named the San Juan, built by Wagner around 1875 and formerly owned by New York Central Railway. It also was of wood construction, with platform ends and galley. It had sleeping accommodation for 10 passengers. When the railway ended, it was transferred to the East Washington Railway Company and converted to living quarters for an employee in 1936. It was destroyed by fire in 1979. There was a second private Wagner car known as the Denver that was later converted to a coach and scrapped in 1936.

For more details and a complete roster of the rolling stock, see the book Otto Mears Goes East: The Chesapeake Beach Railway by Ames W. Williams.