The engine was designed to haul passenger and freight trains on the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad.
By the time the CB&Q took delivery of #4963 in 1923, part of an order for sixty (#4940-#4999), it already had three hundred and eight Mikado type (2-8-2) locomotives on its roster.
In the picture shown on the right hand side of the page, the engine is seen hauling a freight train at Bevier, Missouri on May 24, 1957
No. 4963 was retired in 1966, and it was going to be cut up at a Chicago-area scrap yard.
Today the engine is a static display at the Illinois Railway Museum.
The sixty O-1A class Mikes were based on the earlier O-1 class but with outside admission piston valves instead of inside, and tapered boilers in place of wagon tops.In 2016, the headlight and number-board were put back on 4963.
From 1961 to 1966, #4963 worked for the Bevier & Southern in Bevier, MO, and then passed through a number of owners before arriving at the Illinois railway museum in 1990.
After Richard Jensen's death, the IRM was able to acquire his 4963, rescuing it from a Chicago-area scrap dealer just before it was scheduled to be cut up.
In 1966, he obtained both CB&Q 5632 and 4963 as scrap.