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Donald and Douglas (originally known by their numbers, 57646 and 57647, respectively) are twin Scottish mixed-traffic engines, specifically Caledonian Railway McIntosh 812 classes. Douglas, however, tagged along with Donald to Sodor in order to escape from scrap, despite Donald being the only engine expected. After proving themselves to be really useful, they were both allowed to stay. They now work as utility engines on the NWR; working wherever they're needed. They work primarily on The Little Western, but sometimes on Edward's Branch Line (Railway Series only) and The Main Line.
Donald and Douglas were designed by John F. McIntosh and built by the St Rollox Works for the Caledonian Railway in 1909. Upon nationalisation, they became part of the Scottish Region of British Railways, where they were renumbered 57646 and 57647. In 1959, Sir Topham Hatt needed a goods engine and by his request, BR decided to transfer 57646 (Donald) to Sodor.
To Sir Topham Hatt's surprise though, two engines arrived. Donald's twin Douglas (57647) could not stand to be separated from his brother, and was smart enough to realise he would eventually be scrapped if he stayed in Scotland. Unfortunately for Sir Topham Hatt and any other worker, neither engine could be told apart: both claimed to have forgotten their numbers, and indeed their numberplates had "slyly slipped off" during the journey from Scotland. This caused the Fat Controller to keep both until he could determine which engine was freeloading on his hospitality. It was later revealed that this piece of skulduggery had been planned not only by the two engines, but also by their drivers and firemen, who were related as well.
The Fat Controller was unaware of Douglas' motive and threatened the two that whichever engine he found out to be the truant would be sent home. Both engines resolved to give outstanding service so that Hatt would want to keep both of them. This plan quickly went to pieces, however, after Douglas accidentally shunted Thomas' special coach, full of passengers, into a siding at Tidmouth, causing a great deal of fury for the passengers. Things were more complicated when Donald crashed into a signalbox at Tidmouth and Douglas accidentally destroyed the Spiteful Brake Van, who had caused trouble for him earlier.
Despite all this grief, the twins' professionalism, competency, strong work ethic, and personable natures had begun to win them support, particularly when they demonstrated an aptitude for snowplough work that they had learned in Scotland. After rescuing Henry from just such a snowy ordeal, the other engines came over to Donald and Douglas' side which ultimately led to the engines of Sodor taking industrial action. After a suggestion by Edward, and being pushed into it by Gordon, Percy was presented to the Fat Controller as a deputation, arguing the twins' case on their behalf and pleading that, if sent away, they would be scrapped. Hatt's reaction to this was mixed - though he did not approve or appreciate them trying to interfere with his decision-making, he understood the engines' feelings upon the matters of saving steam engines and scrapping in general. In the end, Percy's statement and the twins' excellent performance was enough for Hatt to take pity on the twins and keep both. He demonstrated this intent with an offer of a fresh coat of paint for both engines, as well as giving them both nameplates to avoid any more confusion. By their request they were painted NWR blue, in honour of their Caledonian heritage.
In 1967, Douglas helped save Oliver, Isabel and Toad from the prospect of scrap. The Fat Controller soon found out and arranged for the three to be repaired and painted in Great Western colours. Toad asked to be Douglas' brake van as a show of gratitude.
Since then, the twins have, by all accounts, "transformed" goods traffic on the main line. Such is their versatility that they regularly see service on the Little Western and Edward's Branch Line, as well as duties as station-pilots at Tidmouth. A turntable has been provided for them at Arlesburgh, although briefly decommissioned after Oliver was pushed into it by some trucks.
After Donald teased Duck about his "quacking", Duck's crew got a humourous payback by slipping a small duckling into Donald's tender. When discovered, the duckling became friends with Donald and his crew, and eventually settled down at Haultraugh, where a small pond was nearby. She was named Dilly by the stationmaster, but she is known to everyone else as Donald's duck.
Such a demanding work-load has begun to tax them, however, and in 1993 the Fat Controller borrowed a navy saddletank named Wilbert from the Dean Forest Railway to deputise for them on the Arlesburgh branch, with the intention of obtaining another engine of Wilbert's class to permanently fill that role.
Donald and Douglas work together nearly all the time, but they sometimes have a falling out. This was proven when the two crashed into Trevor's hay cart. Donald accused Douglas of pushing him into the cart while Douglas accused Donald of pulling him. The twins refused to speak to each other. When Duck needed help at the Sodor Ironworks, Donald took the opportunity to get away from Douglas. While Douglas missed his twin and was ready to make up, Donald began to experience lapses in competence and demanded an apology. Eventually, Donald wasn't looking where he was going and crashed through some buffers into a ditch. As soon as Douglas heard from Duck that Donald was in trouble, he immediately rushed over to help his twin, and the two made up.
Later, Castle Loch was to be reopened by Lord Callan, so Donald and Douglas took some equipment up to the castle. The two argued whether or not the monster inside the lake existed or not. Unfortunately for the twins, a landslide occurs and the two became stranded. The Fat Controller promised help, but soon night came. The twins saw a shape moving towards them on the causeway. Donald and Douglas were petrified until they realised it was only Harvey who had come to help. Soon, the twins got their equipment to the castle on time and Lord Callan called them Really Useful engines.
Donald and Douglas are Scottish twin engines. Donald is numbered 9 and Douglas 10. They are practical and level-minded, but, despite their maturity, they enjoy playing practical jokes and have been known to impersonate one another in the past. When they arrived on Sodor, they caused the Fat Controller confusion, as only one engine had been expected. The twins' numbers allegedly slipped off on the way and neither could recall them; a ploy to prevent one of them losing their twin to scrap. Namely, it was Douglas who had not been expected. His salvation from the scrap-heap may have contributed towards his decision to later aid Oliver in his own daring escape from scrap.
Donald and Douglas are very able workers, strong performers, and handle any task well. They are fully capable of being firm with the other big engines, such as Gordon and Henry, and even the troublesome trucks know better than to try their tricks on them. They are both used to harsh winter conditions too. Coupled back to back, with a coach between their tenders, they are very capable of patrolling the lines, clearing them of the snow. The twins both pull their weight on the Main Line and both Duck and Edward's branch lines. They can enjoy a joke with any engine. They are happy to act as the brawn of the Fat Controller's steam-driven goods haulers. Between the two, Donald tends to be the charming, witty joker whereas Douglas is the smart, quick-thinker, calmer-natured one of the pair. Both display a keen sense of wit and the pair usually get to have the last laugh, more often taking the moral high ground. But that does not mean they will not be just a little bit smug about it when a deserving engine meets their comeuppance.
Donald and Douglas hate to be parted from his brother, but, like most twins, they often have their arguments among themselves and can squabble with one another. They do, however, love playing practical jokes on the other engines, and they use to impersonate one another. They were fitted with nameplates to specifically end this element of their humour. Donald and Douglas use to also have a strong dislike of Diesels, because of them they could have been scrapped. Douglas once stated that he'd never trust one himself. But overtime, gradually their dislikement for diesels changed and they appeared to have grown accustomed to their diesel companions.
Donald and Douglas are both based on the Caledonian Railway McIntosh 812 Class 0-6-0 goods engine. Their numbers, however, would realistically place them in the 652 sub-class. One example survives in preservation.
According to the Railway Series, Donald and Douglas were painted black from construction and arrived on Sodor in the BR's black goods livery with red-and-white lining on their tenders. They remained as such (with the addition of numbers on their tenders in yellow with red borders) until it was decided that both engines could stay, at which point they requested to be repainted in the North Western Railway's sky blue livery with red-and-yellow lining. They apparently like the colour, as it reminds them of the Caledonian Railway, where many of their shedmates carried a similar shade of blue. They received red nameplates with their names in gold at the same time. In the Railway Series their names are in all capitals, whereas in the television series only their initials are capitalized.
In the Railway Series, they carry two builder's plates on the sides of their cabs.
In the Television Series, the twins arrived in BR lined black and have remained in this livery ever since.
- The Rev. W. Awdry only made a model of Donald for his model railway; there never was a Douglas model. The model is currently on display at the Narrow Gauge Museum in Tywyn.
- According to a magazine story, Donald and Douglas were built at The Scottish Engine Company.
- Donald and Douglas' television series models are currently on display at Hara Model Railway Museum in Japan. As a result of the eye mechanisms not being replaced after the twelfth season, new eyes and pupils have been put in for display.
- In the My Thomas Story Library and Engine Adventures series, the twins were painted blue following their being allowed to stay, just as they were in the Railway Series.
- The twins' original numbers are an in-joke. The 812/652 Class numbers only went up to 57645.
- In the Railway Series, Donald and Douglas are nicknamed "The Caledonian Twins." In the television series, they are nicknamed "The Scottish Twins." This is because they originated from the Caledonian Railway, in Scotland.
- Donald and Douglas' models did not have any watertanks on their tenders, this is also carried on to their CGI models. However, this was present on their large scale models.
- Despite Duck not being number 8 in the Railway Series, Donald and Douglas were number 9 and 10 in the Railway Series.
- Donald and Douglas went through several aesthetic changes in the television series:
- Season 3:
- Their nameplates were moved from their smokeboxes closer to the centre of their boilers.
- Their brake pipes were moved from their left (viewer right) to their right side.
- Douglas shared Donald's whistle sound.
- Season 4:
- Their nameplates were moved precisely to the centre of their boilers.
- Their whistle sounds changed.
- Season 6:
- Their brake pipes now face upwards.
- Douglas' whistle sound is the same as Donald again.
- Season 3:
- "Ye're a muckle nuisance," said Donald one day. "It's to leave ye behind I'd be wanting."
- "You can't," said the van, "I'm essential."
- "Och are ye?" Donald burst out. "Ye're nothing but a screeching and a noise when all's said and done. Spite Douggie wad ye? Take that."
- "Oh! Oh! Oh!" cried the van.
- "Hold yer wheesht," said Donald severely. "There's more coming should ye misbehave."
- "Any wan wad think," said Douglas, "that Donald had his accident on purpose. I heard tell," he went on, "about an engine and some tar wagons."
- Gordon and Henry chuckled.
- "Shut up!" said James. "It's not funny."
- He didn't like to be reminded of his own accident.
- "Well! Well! Well!" said Douglas. "Surely. James it wasn't you. You didn't say."
- James didn't say. He slouched sulkily away.
- Douglas ribbing James, "The Twin Engines"
- ERTL (discontinued)
- Wooden Railway (discontinued)
- Take Along (discontinued)
- My First Thomas (discontinued)
- Motor Road and Rail (discontinued)
- TrackMaster (discontinued)
- Trading Cards (discontinued)
- Thomas Engine Collection Series (discontinued)
- Mini Die Cast Collection (discontinued)
- Departing Now (discontinued)
- Thomas Town (discontinued)
- Tomica (discontinued)
- De Agostini (discontinued)
- Wind-up Trains (motorized and unmotorized, Japan only)
- Pocket Fantasy (discontinued)
- Departing Now (discontinued)