Water Tank

Water Tank

Steam locomotives need large quantities of water to create the steam that powers their running gear. Locomotive water tanks (located in the tender) were replenished at large, trackside filling stations located at intervals along the line. (This was the origin of the term “tank town.”) The elevated tanks transferred water to the locomotive tender via a large spout. Using an automatic refill mechanism, the tanks were refilled from local natural springs, uphill lakes or rivers or a nearby well. The Museum’s No Agua water tank has a capacity of about 10,000 gallons and is used to fill the operating steam locomotives. The name comes from a water stop on the D&RG’s Chili Line to Santa Fe, New Mexico, located near a settlement called No Agua. In appreciation of the local humor, the railroad decided to call the water stop No Agua. (Data Sheet [PDF])

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