ROCKPORT — In a collaborative effort, the nonprofit, Legacy Rockport, and the town of Rockport have embarked on the rehabilitation of the old Vulcan steam locomotive at Marine Park.

Restoration of the Rockport locomotive will include specialty work performed by local businesses and volunteers.

The 100-year-old Vulcan locomotive represents an important part of Rockport’s history, when the town was bustling with industry, and narrow-gauge train cars regularly transported mined limestone from nearby quarries to the fiery kilns at the harbor.

Large ships, some of which were also constructed at boatyards along the harbor, carried the processed lime to Eastern Seaboard cities — Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, New York and Boston — for use in construction projects. Rockport’s lime industry fueled a growing nation, and the kilns, as well as the locomotive at Rockport Harbor, are vestiges of the country’s history.

This particular locomotive was manufactured in 1923 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. The Rockport Lime Company transported lime from Simonton Corner lime quarries and the 35-ton freight cars dumped lime directly into the lime kilns, for processing and export.

But the Vulcan now needs a cosmetic restoration to restore its earlier beauty and to preserve it for future generations to better understand local history.

Legacy Rockport, the nonprofit that was established as an outgrowth of the town’s 2004 Comprehensive Plan to help facilitate capital improvement projects, has committed to help lead this restoration.

Specialty work will be performed by local businesses and volunteers to clean and paint the locomotive to protect against the continued intrusion of salt air, salt mist, rain, snow and ice. The estimated rehabilitation cost is $25,000, and a fundraising effort is now underway to get the project completed this fall.

To help Legacy Rockport and the town of Rockport complete this project, donate online at or by check to Legacy Rockport, 101 Main St., Rockland, ME 04856.

For more information, email