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By Mark Green on

The secret messages revealed by our A4 loco restorers

Restoring objects from our collection often reveals fascinating secrets, and LNER Class A4 60008 Dwight D. Eisenhower was no exception.

During the work we’ve been doing to cosmetically restore LNER Class A4 60008 Dwight D. Eisenhower since it was repatriated from the US, we’ve uncovered a surprise: a list of names.

Class A4 60008 Dwight D Eisenhower - names inscribed under removed paint

In the US, Dwight’s motion was painted with several coats of aluminium paint. Our workshop team have been stripping that back down to the bare metal – and underneath the paint layers, we’ve found the names inscribed into the metal of the slide bar.

Close-up of names inscribed into A4 60008 Dwight D Eisenhower
A close-up of the names discovered under the paint on A4 Dwight D Eisenhower

Anthony Coulls, Senior Curator of our rail vehicle collection, thinks that these are the names of the American team who painted Dwight in 1984, or the crew who put the motion back together after the locomotive originally landed in America in the late 1960s.

Do you know different? Let us know if you recognise any of these names – or if one of them is you.

That’s not the only surprise we’ve had while working on the A4s for our upcoming Mallard 75 events. The team at Shildon have been stripping paint on Dominion of Canada, and found this strange drawing of a dog…

Dog drawing discovered during the restoration of A4 Dominion Of Canada

… and a rabbit.

Rabbit drawing found under the paint on A4 Dominion Of Canada

5 comments on “The secret messages revealed by our A4 loco restorers

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