1803: Richard Trevithick builds the first steam locomotive in England.
1813: "Puffing Billy," a steam locomotive built by Englishman William Hedley, becomes the first locomotive to haul 50-ton coal wagons.
1829: A steam-powered locomotive called "Rocket," built by Robert Stephenson, is named the best locomotive to run on England's Liverpool to Manchester railroad in an English contest called the Rainhill Trials.
1830: "Best Friend of Charleston" is the first successful U.S. steam-powered locomotive.
1830: England's Liverpool to Manchester line provides the first steam-powered passenger and freight trains to provide a regularly scheduled service.
1863: First underground railroad in London uses steam trains.
1864: George Pullman invents Pullman cars with bunk beds on North American and European steam locomotives.
1869: First U.S. coast-to-coast railroad is completed with the joining of Central Pacific and Union Pacific.
1876: Special train on Pennsylvania Railroad, traveling 438 miles from Jersey City to Pittsburgh, sets world record for nonstop run by a steam locomotive.
1893: First steam locomotive, called "999," travels more than 100 mph outside Batavia, New York.
1902: Introduction of luxury steam train service; New York Central's Twentieth Century Limited consists of three Pullman cars, a buffet car, a barber shop and maids.
1941: Union Pacific Railroad builds the world's biggest steam locomotive, called "Big Boy," to carry freight over the Rocky Mountains. It was 130 feet long with a speed of 80 miles per hour.
1950s: Almost all railroad companies buy diesel locomotives.
1970s: Steam locomotives fall into obsolescence. They are sent to railroad museums, junk yards and movie companies, which used them for historical films.
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