More on the Snug Harbor 2-6-2, before it reached Oregon
In November of 2001 I received several photos by email, in response to my on-line inquiry about the Snug Harbor Railroad equipment from Charleston (Coos Bay) Oregon, which went to the Alton & Pacific in Humboldt County, CA, and subsequently went to Healdsburg, where it possibly still sits.
Here are several of them, from Jim Smith of Seattle, WA (and London, England), with whom I have lost contact. Along with the photos, he gave me permission to use them.
Here are some of his comments, and those of his uncle, Jim James. Perhaps they will be helpful to someone...
"My great grandfather, Oscar Coffman and his son-in-law, my grandfather, Rodell James, built that train. The two of them built a number of steam locomotives, all by hand in the 30's and 40's.
"The main photo I have of the train refered to as the Snug Harbor Railroad has the following text on the back of the photo:
"My grandfather operated this train as a summer amusement ride in the Malibu, CA hills."
Reseda, CA - Shearcut Tool Company (and Coffman Miniature Locomotive works??)
the Malibu hills, Summer of 1957. Rody worked me like a
slave every weekend" - Jim James, Son
of Rodell James
"The Shearcut (Tool?) Co, I believe, was in the complex of buildings where my grandpa, Oscar, had his shop. I would guess all those old guys were a resource for each other in those days. All that took place in the Reseda, Sunland and Tujunga area of the San Fernando Valley.
"My dad "made" me work for him, running the train in the Malibu hills at a place called Lake Enchanto in the summer of 1957. My remembrance is that the layout was a circle/oval, probably less than 100 yards total in circumfrence, next to a somewhat swampy "lake" with rowboats to rent.
dad ran the train only on Saturdays and Sundays, from
about 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. We got up early (for a
13 year old, 6 a.m. was early), drove from Redondo Beach [pictured below] to
the site, and fired up the loco. I remember he used
a tank type vacuum cleaner (all metal in those days) that
he had cut in half to make smaller and used the fan to
blow air into the firebox to get steam faster."
|"[The two photos above] are
from Sebald Avenue in Redondo Beach, in the post-war
period. My grandparents lived there for at least twenty
years. Every so often Grandpa would lay out thirty feet
of track and run it out to the end of the driveway! I
lived in that house as a toddler and later ended up
owning a home a few blocks away as an adult.
name Sunland Limited came from the Sunland area of the
San Fernando Valley where the train was set up earlier in
the 1950s, maybe even the late '40s. The colors
used on the locomotive and tender were orange, yellow,
and black, similar to the Southern Pacific colors."
My Alton & Pacific Page
The Snug Harbor Equipment at Healdsburg
Any questions - or answers?? Please email me.