Phelps-Dodge

Locomotives
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New: 1 September 2020 William Ford photo at Clifton, Arizona on xx xxxxxx xxxx
Reporting Mark: PHDX Formatted by: R. Craig
Arizona's southwest corner has been home, for decades, to one of the largest copper mining operations on the globe. The region (approximately 160 miles west of Phoenix) was opened to mining by the Detroit Copper Company in the late 1870s. It remained as such until acquired by Phelps-Dodge Corporation in 1917. PHD also had mining and smelting operations in New Mexico and Texas. Prior to the takeover, the company employed a bore and tunnel method to extract low-grade copper and ship it to the smelter in nearby Douglas. By the late 1930s, plans were well on their way to transition to open-cut mining, which began operating in early 1942.

The shift in mining technology was accompanied by a significant change in motive power strategy, which included electrification and more powerful diesel locomotives.

Phelps-Dodge was acquired by Freeport-McMoRan in 2007

Model (& Builder Road No. Serial Nmbr Date Notes
* * Assigned to Morenci Pit Mine
SW1 (EMC) A 903 7/39 --
GP7 (EMD) 1(2nd) & 2(2nd) 16896, 16897 6/52 --
NW2 (EMC) 2 7810 3/49 --
NW2 (EMD) 3 & 4 885, 886 6/39 --
5 & 6 1170, 1171 10/40 --
7 & 8 2351, 2352 11/42 #8 rebuilt as SW1200R; sold to Austin & Southwestern 8
VO-1000 (BLW) 9 64729 2/43 --
10 64730 2/43 Sold to Econo-Rail
GP7 (EMD) 27 16890 6/52 --
28 & 29 18171, 18172 6/53 --
GP9 (EMD) 30-34 20596-20600 8/55 #34 wrecked & rplaced
34(2nd) 15050 -- Rebuilt from Phelps-Dodge Lavender Pit x-N&W 3466 < nee Wabash GP7 466
35-42 20601-20608 8/55 #35 & 39 wrecked and rebuilt
43 23250 4/57 --
GP18 (EMD) 44 27463 9/62 --
45 & 46 27464, 27465 9/62 --
GP38 (EMD) 47 & 48 32290, 32291 10/66 --
49-52 33072-33075 4/67 #51 sold to NREX
53 & 54 37375, 37376 4/71 #54 sold to Eastern Alabama/vMeridian & Bigbee 5
GP38-2 (EMD) 55-57 756116-2,3 & 31/TH> 3/76 --
58 816026-1 3/82 --
GP39-2 (EMD) 63 806055-1 8/81 Ex-Phelps-Dodge (Ajo, Az) #33
* * Assigned to New Cornelia Branch
SW1 (EMD) 1 903 7/39 Re-#d from "A"
NW2 (EMC) 2 & 3 4845, 4846 6/47 Sold to Econo-Rail
4 & 5 8960, 8961 11/49 #5 sold to Econo-Rail
SW7 (EMD) 6 13981 1/51 Sold to Tuscon Cornelia & Gila Bend 53
GP7 (EMD) 7 & 8 16898, 18170 5/53 --
GP7 (EMD) 9 & 10 -- -- --
GP38-2 (EMD) 9(2nd) 756116-1 10/66 --
135-ton Electrics (BLW) 11 73228 12/46 --
12 & 13 73221, 73222 1/47 --
14 & 15 73223, 73224 2/47 --
16 73225 3/47 --
17 73226 4/47 --
18 75110 5/51 --
Electric motor note: The B-B locomotives were rated 2300V, 840-hp; they also incorporated two Stirling diesel engines. (Data compiled by Bob Lehmuth)
GP9 (EMD) 21 & 22 19981, 19982 4/55 #22 sold to Econo-Rail
23 22080 9/56 --
GP30 (EMD) 24-28 (2nd) 2772-27731 6/63 #25, 27 & 28 sold to Southwestern
29-32(2nd) 27732-27735 6/63 29 & 30 sold to South Western; and 31 sold to Econo-Rail
* * Assigned to Douglas Smelter
80-Toner (GE) 133 38473 9/72 --
134 38989 5/74 --
* * Assigned to Lavender Pit
NW2 (EMD) 1 & 2 7809, 7810 6/47 #1 sold to EconRail; #2 initially assigned to Morenci Branch

Sources:

  • Tom Hirsch (copy of Phelps-Dodge 1985 roster from Pacific News magazine)
  • Don Strack of Utah Rails website
  • Joe Strapac, editor of Western Railroads magazine
  • Bob Lemhuth's GE construction roster
  • Diesel Era Magazine, "GP9 Part 28" (September, October 2014)
  • EMD Order Numbers at TrainWeb
  • Diesels from Eddystone (by Gary W. and Stephen F. Dolzall)
  • Railroads Illustrated,"Mixed Train to Ajo" (July 2012)
  • Trains Magzine On-Line Forun: GP30 Ownership

Credits

Thanks to the following contributors/sources: xxxxxx<>

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