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Home > Archives > Silver Star near Lorton, Va., 1970s.

Silver Star near Lorton, Va., 1970s.

Color slide showing the Silver Star (New York-Tampa-Miami) near Lorton, Va.; image likely dates to the 1970s.

<i>Silver Star</i> near Lorton, Va., 1970s.

The Amtrak Silver Star takes its name from that of a predecessor train inaugurated by the Seaboard Air Line Railroad. In this image, the train is led by SDP40F locomotive No. 548, wearing the Amtrak Phase I paint scheme introduced in 1972. The first locomotive built expressly for Amtrak, the SDP40F was a six axle diesel-electric unit that sported a 3,000 horsepower engine. It was built in 1973 and 1974 by the General Motors Electro-Motive Division.

Since many passenger rail cars were still heated via steam, the SDP40F included two steam generators and a water tank. Within a decade, most of these locomotives were replaced with F40PH models that could operate more easily with the new and refurbished fleet of all-electric passenger cars.

Amtrak heavily promoted travel to Florida via the Silver Star and other trains. Efforts included the Week of Wheels in Florida, Florida Carrousel and Villa Vacation packages, which generally combined Amtrak travel with car and housing rentals.

Photographer: Unknown for Amtrak. From the Amtrak Corporate Collection (Marketing Library).