Many California railroads were organized, not to become a large railroad, but to simply serve some local purpose. Hauling lumber or minerals or sugar beets required rail services best provided by a focused, local organization.
What is a short line' Basically a smaller railroad that operates limited mileage in a single region or state and perhaps is tied to a particular commodity or service. Whether private or common carrier, the styles of short line operation were similar. The two types of carriers often sold locomotives between one another and these engines can be found lettered for both.
What is a short line steam locomotive' Generally, they were built first with cost as a primary consideration, followed by compatibility with existing infrastructure (bridge weight limits and track structure). Most weighed 90 tons or less, with small-diameter driving wheels to operate at slow speeds. This book documents in B&W photographs with captions and text those non-geared short line steam locomotives which operated in California.
Ch. 1: Introduction, pp. 3-7;
Ch. 2: Moguls: 2-6-0 Locomotives;
Ch. 3: Prairies: 2-6-2 and 2-6-2T Locomotives, pp. 20-49;
Ch. 4: Passenger Locomotives: 4-4-0 and 4-6-0 Locomotives, pp. 50-59;
Ch. 5: 2-8-0 Consolidation Locomotives, 60-69;
Ch. 6: 2-8-2 Mikado Locomotives, pp. 70-89;
Ch. 7: Specialized Locomotives: Mallets and Minarets, pp. 90-105;
Ch. 8: Six-Wheel Switchers: 0-6-0 and 0-6-0T, pp. 106-119;
Ch. 9: Four Drivers: Switchers and Forney's, pp. 120-128.
Shade Tree Books, softcover, 128 pages, standard portrait book 8 x 10 in., B&W photographs with captions and text.