A photo of unknown date and origin showing a person stood by a train on the Kabul to Darulaman narrow gauge railway.
Another photograph of one of the Henschel steam locomotives on the Kabul – Darulaman railway has been found, in the book “Джанг: Восстание в Афганистане” (War: Uprising in Afghanistan) by journalist Евгений Шуан (Yevgeniy Shuan) which was published in Leningrad in 1930.
The picture was spotted by Markus Hauser, who alerted me to it. His full thread is worth a read, with a lot of interesting pictures of 1920s Afghanistan from the book.
Latest additions to The Pamir Archive:
Джанг: Восстание в Афганистане
[Ленинград]: Прибой, 1930. – 246,  с.: ил., портр.
-> Another rare and interesting account of Afghanistan by the only European journalist in Afghanistan in 1929.
(Джанг = War) pic.twitter.com/QQzDivkJLP
— Markus Hauser (@hausibek) February 11, 2021
Someone has written a bot which automatically colourises photos that are sent to it via Twitter. This is what it did with a photograph of the Darualman railway. Note that this is just for fun, and it is not intended to be historically accurate!
— Colorise Bot (@colorisebot) November 5, 2017
There is a photo of a “Henschel engine of the first railway at Kabul, stored at Darulaman, 1974” by Dr Wolfram Koehler at the Trains-Worldexpresses website (which also has lots of other interesting pictures of trains in Asia).
Some things that touring President Eisenhower and his retinue didn’t have a chance to see during their six-hour trip to Kabul last December:
The country’s only railroad – well, railroad equipment. Two ancient steam engines and tenders given Afghanistan by the late Kaiser Wilhelm of Germany. The train used to make miniature runs from the Parliament building to the palaces in the center of town. Now there’s not even a track and the engines are kept as curiosity pieces.
Source: Contrasts Plentiful In Afghanistan, AI Goldberg of AP’s Moscow staff, in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune of 1 February 1960.
Another mention of there only being two locomotives in the past – however today there are three locomotives in the museum. It might be noted that the Kaiser had abdicated in 1918, while the locomotives date from 1923.
Photos of steam locos at the museum, taken by Stefan Schmitt on 6 February 2010. “Evidence of attempts of Amanullah Shah’s attempts to ‘modernize’ Afghanistan in the 1920’s. In those days they even had 7kms of railway in Kabul! The locomotive in the foreground and the Darulaman Palace he built.”
Amanullah sought German companies and engineers into the country to build roads, bridges, dams and royal palace in Darulaman, a suburb of Kabul. The locomtives were transported by ship to Mumbai and then pulled by elephant in passes through the Hindu Kush, where a couple of hundred metres of rail were laid. After 20+ years of civil war turmoil and the destruction of Kabul, they’re overgrown by thistles and thorn bushes are three rusty steam engines and the carriage labelled “Made in Germany”
Flickr photo by Tanya Murphy (username “turnip!”, © All Rights Reserved), taken on 2 November 2009.
“This was the first steam train of the Kabul Railroad – we got chased away from taking pictures”. Photo taken by Timothy Bates, 12 November 2010
The view from the Archaeology Museum. In the foreground are early trains, a form of transportation first brought to Afghanistan by the British. Unfortunately there is no train service in Afghanistan today.
Flickr photo taken on 14 January 2009 by Lauras Eye (CC BY-ND 2.0). The locos were supplied from Germany.