This locomotive spent a long life as a freight engine on the Virginia & Truckee railroad.
In 1910, she was renumbered #15 due to the bad luck associated with her previous number.
The locomotive was retired in 1918 and sold to the Pacific Portland Cement Company, in Gerlach, NV, in 1924 as #501.
In 1938, Empire was presented to the Pacific Coast Chapter of the Railway and Locomotive Historical Society for preservation.
She is now on display at the California State Railroad Museum, restored to her 'as built' appearance.
In 1976, #13 was moved to join the museum’s collection at the newly built Central Pacific Railroad Passenger Station in Sacramento.
In 1910, it was converted from a wood burner to an oil burner, and was renumbered #15, perhaps because engine crews thought #13 unlucky.
In 1978, a total restoration based on period photographs and original drawings returned #13 to very much how it looked when it was delivered to the V&T in 1873.
When the engine was at the Portland Cement Company it operated as switcher #501 until retired again in 1931.
The restored locomotive went on display in the new museum building when it opened in 1981.