Following the Union
Pacific/Western Pacific merger in 1982, UP repainted the 731 into
their armor yellow and harbor mist gray paint scheme with red
lettering in late January of 1985, and returned her to former WP
lines in the Bay Area. The 725 didn't last long in its new
identity however, as it was sold in August of 1985 to
Iowa Interstate Railroad as their
#306. WP 731/UP306 spent 10 years working the Iowa Interstate
before being sold to the Feather River Rail Society in 1995 along
with sister WP 725. WP 731 is currently operational, but wears
faded UP paint, as IAIS never repainted UP 306 into their attractive
black paint scheme. 731 was recently returned to operation,
and once the few remaining mechanical bugs are worked out, she will
be returned to Western Pacific paint, though it has not been decided
which WP scheme she will wear.
Notable events of 1955:
January 7 – Marian Anderson is
the first African American singer to perform at the Metropolitan
Opera in New York City.
January 19 – The game Scrabble debuts.
February 1 – Ray Kroc opens a McDonald's fast food restaurant (the
company's 9th since it was founded in 1940), but Kroc later takes
over the company and oversees its worldwide expansion. This
represents the start of business "Franchising".
March 19 –
KXTV of Stockton, California, signs
on the air in the United States, being the 100th commercial
television station in this country.
April 5 - Winston Churchill resigns as Prime Minister of the United
April 18 – Albert Einstein dies in New Jersey.
June 7 – The TV quiz program The $64,000 Question premieres on
CBS-TV in the United States, with Hal March as the host.
June 11 – Le Mans disaster: eighty-three people are killed and at
least 100 are injured after two race cars collide in the 1955 24
Hours of Le Mans.
June 16 – Lady and the Tramp, the Walt Disney company's 15th
animated film, premieres in Chicago, Illinois
July 18 - The Disneyland Theme Park opens to the public in Anaheim,
August 27 – First edition of the Guinness Book of Records is
published, in London.
September 30 – Actor James Dean is killed when his automobile
collides with another car at a highway junction near Cholame,
California. Dean is just 24 years old.
October 2 – Alfred Hitchcock Presents TV program debuts on the
NBC-TV network in the United States.
October 3 – The Mickey Mouse Club TV program debuts on the ABC-TV
network in the United States.
October 4 - The Brooklyn Dodgers finally win the World Series,
defeating the New York Yankees 2–0 in Game 7 of the 1955 baseball
December 31 – General Motors Corporation becomes the first American
corporation to make a profit of over one billion dollars in one
WP 731 rolls
through Fremont, California with a "hot" 1 car local for the Ford
Plant in nearby Milpitas.
WP 725 in faded yellow paint of
successor Union Pacific, in storage at the Western Pacific Railroad
Museum in 2008.