I don't know what it is about a steam engine that is so fascinating. How in the world can those 8 steel wheels on 2 steel tracks have enough traction to pull 100 loaded freight cars up an incline? How can a boiler full of water and some coal produce that kind of raw power?
When I was in the Navy in 1965 I seved on the USS Northampton. She was a cruiser that was 667 feet long. More than 2 football fields. She was powered by 4 steam turbins and could run 37 Knots under full power. That is over 40 mph. Steam power just never ceases to amaze me.