THE GREAT LOCOMOTIVE CHASE
DIRECTED BY FRANCIS D. LYON
PRODUCED BY WALT DISNEY
LAWRENCE EDWARD WATKIN
WALT DISNEY PRODUCTIONS
Photo with the courtesy of lasbugas
Information from IMDb
This is based on a true story. During the Civil War, a Union spy, Andrews,
is asked to lead a band of Union soldiers into the South so that they could destroy the railway system.
However, things don't go as planned when the conductor of the train that they stole is on to them
and is doing everything he can to stop them.
Written by rcs0411
Fess Parker ... James J. Andrews
Jeffrey Hunter ... William A. Fuller
Jeff York ... William Campbell
John Lupton ... William Pittenger
Eddie Firestone ... Robert Buffum
Kenneth Tobey ... Anthony Murphy
Don Megowan ... Marion A. Ross
Claude Jarman Jr. ... Jacob Parrott
Harry Carey Jr. ... William Bensinger
Leonard P. Geer ... J.A. Wilson (as Lennie Geer)
George Robotham ... William Knight
Stan Jones ... Wilson Brown
Marc Hamilton ... John Wollam
John Wiley ... John M. Scott
Slim Pickens ... Pete Bracken
Morgan Woodward ... Alex
W.S. Bearden ... A switchman
Harvey Hester ... Jess McIntyre
Robert Kent ... A switchman (as Douglas Bleckley):
Joel Ashley ... Undetermined Role (uncredited)
Richard H. Cutting ... Union General Mitchell (uncredited)
John Daheim ... Cox (uncredited)
Robert Foulk ... Confederate General Ledbetter (uncredited)
Roy Gordon ... Secretary Stanton (uncredited)
Mitchell Kowall ... Undetermined Role (uncredited)
Hank Patterson ... Turner, Friendly Jailer (uncredited)
John Pickard ... Confederate Lt. Fletcher (uncredited)
Chuck Roberson ... Confederate Prison Captain (uncredited)
Dick Sargent ... Union Soldier (uncredited)
Dale Van Sickel ... Alonzo Martin (uncredited)
Lawrence Edward Watkin (written by)
Paul J. Smith
Charles P. Boyle
Filmed on the Tallulah Falls Railway which went defunct in the early 1960s.
Debut of Morgan Woodward.
The real General, the locomotive stolen in the movie, is on display in Kennesaw, Georgia, at the Kennesaw Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History.
It was raining on the day of the real chase (this is simply a deviation from the source material and a fact the filmmakers were likely aware of, which is why this is not listed as a goof).
Only thirteen pieces of equipment were actually used: two full-sized locomotives, one yard engine, three passenger cars, two iron box cars, and five wooden box cars that were built specifically to be destroyed in the film. The various pieces of equipment wore different numbers on different trains throughout the movie.
In the film there are 16 raiders. In reality there were actually 20 raiders that participated in the raid. There had initially been 24 raiders, but two joined Confederate forces after being stopped on their journey down to Marietta, as Andrews had instructed, and two more simply overslept and missed the train. These four were not depicted in the film as well as four others who participated.
The locomotive the plays The General in the film (Baltimore and Ohio #25 William Mason) was built around the same time as the General, and had been in service during the Civil War. This is also the same locomotive used as The Wanderer in Wild Wild West.
William Campbell is depicted in the film as a Union soldier. In real history, Campbell was the only civilian beside Andrews to participate in the raid; his character in the film is also quite different than his real life character.
CASTLE THUNDER: Heard when Andrews first meets his raiding party about ten minutes into the film.
The real locomotive "Texas" is on display at the Atlanta Cyclorama and Civil War Museum in Atlanta, Georgia.
Robert E. Lee did not take command of the army of Northern Virginia until 1 June 1862; 1 1/2 months *after* the locomotive chase.
The coaches used in the film feature a duck bill style clerestory roof. While clerestory roof coaches existed in the 1860's they would have been of the monitor style. Furthermore, the Western and Atlantic Railroad was most likely still using the older style radial roof coaches in 1862.
The switches shown are of the point blade variety which were not used before the 1880's. Thw switches on the Western & Atlantic would have been stub switches in 1862.
Pete Bracken's train, hauled by the "Texas", was actually 21 cars long, rather than the 2 cars depicted in the film.
A Union Army officer tells Andrews that Confederate Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard was "moving up to attack Grant at Shiloh." Beauregard was actually second-in-command before the Shiloh attack. Confederate Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston was in charge. Beaurgeard did take over after Johnston's death during the battle. Also, Shiloh was a surprise attack on Grant's Union army. Grant's target was Corinth, Miss. The Confederate's launched a surprise attack from Corinth, on Grant's army at Pittsburg Landing, in Tennessee, in what would become known as the Battle of Shiloh. Therefore, an officer talking to Andrews would have had no prior knowledge of the attack in advance.
The engine representing the Texas is of 1870s vintage and is equipped with a Westinghouse air brake, which was not invented until 1872 and not in common use until the 1880s.
The Yonah, in this film was portrayed by an early 1920s reproduction of an 1830s engine of the 4-2-0 wheel arrangement. The real Yonah was a 4-4-0 engine, as were the General and the Texas, and was built in 1849. Moreover, the real Yonah featured a headlight and cowcatcher, which the one in the film lacks.
The General and Texas feature cowcatchers with vertical wooden slats rather than those with horizontal strap iron ones which the railroad used exclusively until the 1870s.
The real General featured a three-dome configuration and ankle-rails instead of running boards during the war. The film General more closely resembles the real one's post-1890s appearance.
William Campbell in reality was a civilian not a soldier.
Andrews did escape the jail but was recaptured the next day.
The confederate major told the captain that all the captured raiders would be hung. This did not happen. Six were later used in prisoner exchanges including Pittenger and Buffam. Pittenger was later promoted to sergeant and Buffam to second lieutenant.
In the long shot of the Texas running in reverse toward the tunnel, it is obvious by the unnaturally quick movements of the crew that the film has been sped up.
North Carolina, USA
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