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A Piece of Costa Rican History; Locomotive #59

Costa Rica Culture – This is a piece of Costa Rican history that Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory would love to see. Locomotive #59 is 107 years old but now looks brand new. This coal fueled train served Costa Rica from 1939-1956 (when they switched to diesel machines) as part of the Northern Railway Company.

locomatove 59-LUIS-NAVARRO_La nacionToday it sits, perfectly restored, in a corner of the old Atlantic station which is located in downtown San Jose.

The Heritage Center of the Ministry of Culture was responsible for the restoration.

The first step was to clean and patch damaged parts. Then they removed corrosion and stabilized the steel.

Later it was repainted black and green, to match the manufacturer’s catalog.

The 59 was originally manufactured in steel with rivets but was changed to have aluminum welds made in Costa Rica. Northern Railway may also have changed the paint colors when it was imported.

They had to replace some missing doors and windows and install new hinges and latches. The original signs and bronze pieces were also restored. The lighting system was renovated too, meaning that we can see it at night. Lastly, they made a shell structure to protect the locomotive from weather and vandals.

The total cost of the renovation was ¢8,450,000 or about $16,000.

If you want to take a peek at some of the railroad history of Costa Rica, here is how to get the the Atlantic Station.

Picture from :Luis Navarro, La Nacion

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