Green Bay & Western Lines
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ERES #207

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Information on  Erie Western #207, which spent several years on the Green Bay Route in the early 1980s.  Thanks goes out to Bob Welke for information on the engine, and Bob Schoneman  for the image of ERES #207 at Green Bay.

ERES #207 Time Line

1964.02 LIRR #207 built by Alco
unknown Sold to ERES (#207) 
1978.08.11 Last known photo on ERES, Huntington, Ind.
1979.11.17 First known photo on GBW, Green Bay, Wis.
1982.08.27 Last known photo in ERES #207 blue/yellow paint scheme.
1983.04.21 First known photo in repainted as LRW #101, Green Bay, Wis. (Likely completed in late 1982.)
1983.06.01 Photo in La Crosse, Wis., presumably en route to LRW.  

The Erie Western (ERES) acquired a high short hood Alco C-420 (ex-LIRR #207, builders number 84729, build date 1964.02).  In 1979 it came to the GBW for repairs that the ERES couldn't handle, but the ERES proved to be another "every one we know we owe" railroad.

So the GBW placed #207 in service to work off the repair bill, but it proved to have additional problems that required work, so it was actually adding to the bill quicker than it was working it off!

It stayed close to Norwood Yard for a while, but as the problems were cured and it became reliable it headed over to Wisconsin Rapids and became fairly regular on those jobs, including the Plover local.

The crews didn't care for the unit because the passenger gearing made it slippery (although it could really run on the road!) and of course it had a high hood. The shop boys didn't care for it as mechanically it had many differences from the GBW units. (The shop crews had reworked the home road units to make as many things interchangeable from unit to unit, despite model differences, as they could.)  But the debt was there and the ERES was on it's last legs by this point so a deal was made to acquire the unit.

At this point the stories seems to differ. Some say the GBW planned to rebuild it and make it #324 on their roster; others maintain that Green Bay Packaging was already planning the Little Rock & Western operation and talks were underway for the GBW to supply power and this was the reason they acquired #207. The timeline was pretty close so either scenario could be correct. (The #207 was on the GBW in late 1979 and the LRWN started operations April 1, 1980, so by the end of 1979 Green Bay Packaging would have been in serious about creating the LRWN.  In any event, GBW# 305 and #307 headed to Little Rock until the GBW could rebuild the ERES #207 and another Alco C-420, ex-L&N #1317, which Green Bay Packaging purchased directly for the LR&W.

The Norwood shops did a very simple chopped short hood, painted it in GBW style but with green paint instead of red, "LRW" initials in yellow on the long hood, and renumbered it #101.  It was completed at the end of 1982 and shipped to the Little Rock & Western in early 1983.

The engine is still in operation on the LR&W with a sister Alco C-420.


Bob Schoneman photo, November 17, 1979.
This photo may not be reproduced without permission.

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Updated July 11, 2015