top of page

The first completely American-built steam engine to go into scheduled passenger service was built at the West Point Foundry in New York for the Charleston & Hamburg Railroad. In 1831, the boiler exploded due to a fireman's carelessness, putting an end to both the engine and the fireman.

The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830
The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830 - Photo RM20 - captured with permission from Robert Martens from a film taken by his grandfather, Gustave Martens.

The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830
The Best Friend of Charleston - Courtesy of the World's Fair Historical Society - photo wf-290r

The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830
The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830 - photo 181

The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830
The Best Friend of Charleston - Courtesy of the World's Fair Historical Society - photo wf-266r

The Best Friend of Charleston - 1830
The Best Friend of Charleston sits in the yard between shows. Courtesy of the World's Fair Historical Society - photo wf-297r

1829 -  The Tom Thumb
The Best Friend of Charleston sits in the yard between shows. Courtesy of the World's Fair Historical Society - photo wf-318r