Railroad History

Its all about the rails


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William Hedley introduces Puffing Billy

Puffing Billy was one of the three railway engines built by William Hedley, the resident engineer at Wylam Colliery. The railway steam locomotives were built to replace the horses used to pull wagons on the tramway. 

In 1813 Hedley built engines for Christopher Blackett's colliery business. Christopher Blackett was the owner of Wylam Colliery near Newcastle upon Tyne, in the United Kingdom.

William Hedley of Northumberland

Hedley built a line of prototypes for the Wylam Colliery rail line. Two of the lines were named Puffing Billy and Wylam Dilly. Puffing Billy is considered the first commercial adhesion steam locomotive, employed to haul coal chaldron wagons from the mine at Wylam to the docks at Lemington-on-Tyne in Northumberland.

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