ATSF 2-8-0 769


1900Built by Richmond as Santa Fe Pacific 266
1902Became A.T.&S.F. 3045
?Renumbered to A.T.&S.F. 769
1950Sold to Albuquerque & Los Cerrillos Coal Co., Madrid, NM
1959Abandoned at Madrid, NM
ca.1982Restored as part of "Old Coal Mine Museum."


Built in 1900 by the Richmond Locomotive Works, 769 is one of only a handful of non-Baldwin-built Santa Fe steamers still in existence. It began life as Santa Fe Pacific Railroad #266, the first of a group of 20 2-8-0's built for this A.T.&S.F. subsidiary (the SFP was formed to operate the former Atlantic & Pacific Railroad when the Santa Fe took possession of the latter in 1897). In 1902, the locomotive became A.T.&S.F. 3045, and some time later was renumbered to 769. The engine traded tenders at least once in its career, ending up with the tank from Santa Fe 4-6-2 #1227, which was scrapped in 1936.

While several members of the 769-class were cut down to lowly 0-8-0's in the Santa Fe's shops in the 1930's, class locomotive 769 suffered the possibly greater indignity of being sold off to the Albuquerque & Los Cerrillos Coal Company in 1950. Along with 2-8-0's 870 and 874, 769 was sent to work at the coal mine at Madrid, NM, located at the end of a branch extending south from the Santa Fe main at Waldo. The 769 was never renumbered nor relettered by the coal company, and spent its post-Santa Fe career in full A.T.&S.F. markings. When the mine shut down amid a declining coal market in 1959, Madrid became a ghost town. Locomotives 769 and 870 were abandoned on-site and left to rust. The 769 was mysteriously parked just outside the old 1-stall enginehouse, which could have afforded it some protection from the elements for the 20 years it sat neglected in Madrid.

The late 1970's saw Madrid come back to life as an artist community and tourist attraction. Locomotive 769 was cosmetically restored and incorporated into the " Old Coal Mine Museum," ironically just a few years after the last pieces of the original mine tipple were demolished. This photo from July 1, 1984 shows the restored locomotive, still standing on the spot where the coal company abandoned it a quarter century before. The former enginehouse beyond the locomotive has been converted into a melodrama theater.


1. Myrick, David F., New Mexico's Railroads, A Historical Survey, Revised Ed., Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press, 1990.
2. Worley, E. D., Iron Horses of the Santa Fe Trail, Dallas: Southwest Railroad Historical Society, 1965.
3. Kistler, Stan, private correspondence.

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