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In 1887, Matthew Holmes, Locomotive Superintendent of the North British Railway, decided to stop building goods locomotives with 17 cylinders and replace them with a larger class than the previous Drummonds. Utilising the same wheelbase and firebox as the Drummond 17 but with a new standard boiler, the first six NBR Class C locomotives were introduced in 1888 and such was their success that by 1900, 168 locomotives had been built.
673 Maude was built at Neilson & Co. in December 1891 and was rebuilt by the North British Railway in December 1915 using the new standard boiler.
Commandeered by the War Department for ROD supply train service, 673 was sent to the Western Front during November 1917, returning in June 1919 and was given the name Maude in appreciation of the locomotive's war service.
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