Pere Marquette 1225, the largest and most impressive locomotive in the Steam Railroading Institute’s collection is the largest operating steam locomotive in Michigan. Built in October of 1941 by the Lima Corporation for the Pere Marquette Railway, 1225 was designed for “fast-freight” service. Most of 1225’s short career in freight service was spent hauling steel and wartime freight between Michigan’s factories and northern Indiana steel mills.
The locomotive is one of thirty-nine 2-8-4 Berkshire types ordered by the Pere Marquette Railway. PM1225 is sixteen feet tall, 101 feet long with a combined engine and tender weight of 400 tons. It produces 3000 horsepower and in the 1940s, was able to pull one hundred loaded freight cars at sixty miles per hour.