The H.K. Porter steam locomotive located at Bloedel Donovan Park will be re-purposed, restored, and eventually placed on public display at the Northwest Railway Museum in Snoqualmie. The City solicited and received three Letters of Interest from railroad organizations in Washington and Oregon, and the Museum's proposal provided the best option for a new home.
The relocation of the locomotive will occur on Thursday, Sept. 21 through a Northwest Railway Museum funded effort. The City completed a Surplus Property Agreement with the Northwest Railway Museum, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization.
For the last 57 years, the #9 Porter locomotive has been a fixture at Bloedel Donovan Park near the shoreline of Lake Whatcom. It has fallen into disrepair with some of its components vandalized or stolen. The Permanente Cement Company purchased the engine from the U.S. Navy, and eventually donated it to the City of Bellingham in 1960.
The Museum will use the locomotive in the interpretation of Northwest railway history, and in related science or physics demonstrations. Initially, the locomotive will reside in a static display and later be rehabilitated to operate at the Museum, where it will be used to train volunteers in the operation of steam locomotives.
The locomotive will be on display in late fall of 2017.