Altogether, 15 tunnels were bored through the Sierra. During the war 22,022 Texans were killed or died of wounds. Perhaps most interesting about The Southwestern Route To Southern Pacific men and women President Mercier directed a stirring message outlining the railroad's responsibilities and how it was prepared to meet them. Picks and shovels, black powder, wheelbarrows, one-horse dump carts, were the only aids to grading. Typical of the courage and daring that characterized the successful exploits of many western pioneers, the four associates launched the project, unmatched in all the story of rail transportation, without any one of them ever having been remotely connected with a construction project of greater magnitude than the erection of their own store buildings. The laurel tie used in the Last Spike ceremony was destroyed in the San Francisco fire of 1906; the silver hammer and sledge are at Palo Alto, Calif., in the Stanford Museum, which institution also owns the famed Golden Spike but keeps it in the vaults of the Wells Fargo Bank in San Francisco. At New Orleans the SP rail lines connected with ships of the Morgan Line, one of America's oldest shipping concerns, dating from the late '40s. Projected expenditures for improvements and expansions in service in 1936 were over 100 per cent above those of the previous year, and the expenditures for maintenance of the property were likewise greatly increased. for CPRR passenger schedules and details of the adoption of, first plan to receive consideration of Congress, Reports of Explorations and Surveys, to ascertain the most practicable and economical route for a railroad from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean, made under the direction of the Secretary of War, in 1853-4, plans for a railroad east over the Sierra, The Central Pacific Railroad and the Legend of Cape Horn, 1865-1866, died in New York City on November 2, 1863, Railway & Travel Guides and the Pacific Railroad, Pullman's Hotel Cars and Palace Sleeping Cars, Very Early American Express Co. Double-tracking was completed at other points over the system, particularly on sections of the Tehachapi mountain line during 1922-23 and 1928-29, and on sections of the Coast Line between San Jose and Watsonville Jct. El Paso was an important stop on the Camino Real that served the Santa Fe Trail and the interior of Mexico. During the pre-war years, starting with 1936 as the year that marked the beginning of a vast improvement program throughout the SP system, the company spent through 1941 approximately $123,000,000 for additions and betterments to the transportation plant. Money raised by Huntington in New York had been exhausted, mostly in the purchase of equipment and materials and in greatly increased cost of their transport around the Horn due to wartime conditions. Just what the Big Four associates envisioned in May of 1869 as their ultimate railroad system is not known. The benefits of a transcontinental railroad, it seems, should have been obvious to all thinking men, but the idea took root only gradually and met with strenuous opposition. Southern Pacific was then the longest and one of the major transportation systems in the country. Primitive and crude as such equipment was by present-day standards, it represented a great advance in its day, and in fact contemporary travel guide books described the Silver Palace Sleeping Cars as "elegant," with "appointments of a home drawing room" and such comforts that one slept "amid the easy roll of the car as sweetly and refreshingly as ever upon the home bed.'' © Copyright 2007-2020 Also involved in the finally completed Cascade Line was a 24-mile line change around the base of Mt. Towns were born, nurtured or killed at the whim of railroad planners. On June 8, 1940, the "Beaver" was established as an economy type train between San Francisco and Portland. The voters of three counties responded favorably, but strong opposing interests threw the bond proposition into court, and it was well into 1865 before the aid was available. latest extension when the newly established Dawson Railway was under In addition there is a warehouse section aggregating 2,000,000 sq. Railroads came late to the part of the country now known as the State of Oklahoma. The main line south from Gilroy was opened to Pajaro (Watsonvllle Jct.) Sproule resumed his pre-war SP position, and Scott became president of the lines in Texas and Louisiana. Built by Alfred E. Davis for James G. Fair and the latter's mining associates of Comstock Lode fame, the company was incorporated March 25,1876. The Union Pacific operated Pullman's Hotel Cars and Palace Sleeping Cars over its portion of the Pacific Railroad. Traffic was inaugurated to Modesto on November 8,1870; to Merced, January 15,1872; to Fresno, May 28,1872; to Tulare, July 25, 1872; and to Sumner (now East Bakersfield) on November 8, 1874. Although each of the four associates was a wealthy man, as wealth was counted in those days, their combined resources were totally inadequate to finance much more than a start in building and equipping the first forty miles of railroad which was necessary under terms of the federal bill before one dollar was available in government bonds. Probably the most expensive construction per-mile was the approximate ten miles of the Bayshore cut-off between San Francisco and San Bruno which was completed at a cost of nearly a million dollars a mile to replace the old main line built in 1863 through the hills south of San Francisco. First streamlined sleeping units had been added to the trains in March. The hiring age of experienced mechanics was raised in an effort to obtain additional manpower needed for the intensified shop schedules. At one time the Central Pacific had thirty ships on the high seas loaded with materials. On April 17, 1927, first trains were operated over the 1,095-mile through line from Nogales to Guadalajara, where connection was made for Mexico City. The name was changed to San Diego & Arizona Eastern Ry. Withdrawal of the southern representatives left official Washington of one accord. During 1940 equipment was ordered for a second 17-car "City of San Francisco," which was ready for service late in July, 1941; also more streamlined passenger coaches which contributed to establishment of two "Daylights" July 4, 1941, on the San Joaquin Valley run between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Southern Pacific's dining car service likewise operated at an all-time peak despite labor shortage and other handicaps common to the entire railroad. Traffic revenues were low, but a progressive and competitive spirit ran high. From GIs in all the services, from admirals and generals, cabinet members and heads of government agencies, as well as from the press, radio, national magazines, and from industry in general, the Southern Pacific and its men and women received inspiring recognition of their wartime transportation performances and of their wholehearted support of homefront endeavors. At Fresno a new freight classification yard, PFE icing station, and 15-mile freight line between Kerman and Biola Jct., were major units of a big project completed in 1929-30. These companies formally came under management and operation of the owners of the Central Pacific just prior to the completion of the Sunset Route, and control was later transferred to the Southern Pacific. This objective was won by the SP forces, and the road opened into Sierra Blanc on November 25, 1881. There were then 238 whose memory was enshrined in the huge gold star on the railroad's service flag, and final reports were incomplete. All movement of supplies and evacuees was done without charge. Long-term leases to Southern Pacific Company were thereafter executed covering properties of the Southern Pacific Railroad Company, Central Pacific Railroad Company, and all other companies of common control. [hidalgo ! A growing sentiment in the West and East favored a railroad that would bind the nation closer together. Mountain roads so steep that covered wagons had to be lowered down them by ropes were still fresh in the minds of emigrants who crossed the plains to settle in the West. Of these 28,000 cars, plus an average of about 77,000 foreign line cars on SP Lines, an average of only 2.4 per cent were out of service for repairs. Southern Pacific's first big test since World War I in mass transportation of troops and military equipment came during August, 1940, when the nation's greatest peacetime movement of soldiers sent many thousands of men of the Regular Army and National Guard to maneuver areas. The revolutionary period, 1910-1920, halted further construction and made operation of the completed road extremely difficult. Hardest hit in the early February storm was the Sacramento Division (including the present Shasta Division), with heavy snow in the mountain regions, floods and high waters in the valley lowlands, rock and dirt slides in Sacramento River Canyon, and severe wind damage to pole lines through the central section of the state. ", In a Victory message to all employes, dispatched over the system August 14, 1945, President Mercier said, in part: "With courage, individual resourcefulness and untiring perseverance in the face of many difficulties, you have done a truly splendid job in helping win the war. It is located on the Rio Grande, there bridged to Juárez, Mexico, just south of the New Mexico line. Special trains brought official leaders from Los Angeles and San Francisco to a ceremony held at the little station of Lang on September 5, 1876, where Charles Crocker, then president of the Southern Pacific Railroad Company, drove the "last spike." interchange with the growing Rock Island system and soon after reached Railroad Map PDF; 2016: 2015: 2014 . The upswing in traffic volume that began in 1935, and which continued through 1936 into 1937, took a down turn in the latter part of '37 due to a nation-wide recession in industrial and other business activities. The "mile a day" program went into high gear. In succeeding years he became a national figure in transportation affairs. heavier power to the property using former Boston & Maine 2-8-4 Officially, SP merged the El Paso and Southwestern Railroad into its This was the forerunner of similar speedy merchandise trains that were later to provide modernized overnight freight deliveries to practically all SP stations within the trade areas of the principal metropolitan distributing centers. began to take its toll. The first suit involving the Union Pacific-Southern Pacific was begun February 1, 1908, and in reversing a lower court's decision, the U. S. Supreme Court on December 2, 1912, held that the ownership of 46% of the outstanding stock of the SP by the Union Pacific was in contravention of the Sherman Act. After all other sources for recruiting track workers in this country had been exhausted, SP imported its first group of Mexican nationals to work on the railroad in May, 1943. During 1859-60 the road was graded about 60 miles to Suisun. Despite its large size the EP&SW always relied heavily on copper as its major source of freight and when prices began to decline around World War I so too did the company's fortunes. Canvas towns sprang up to live but a few days as rail-head was pushed steadily eastward. The majority were in the Army and the Army Air Force, but nearly one-fourth served in the navy, marines, or the coast guard. Many of the valley's large cities of today—Fresno, Merced, Modesto, Tulare and others—were just "railroad towns" in the '70s, founded by the railroad's builders. Construction of the line had progressed so rapidly that Central Pacific was not equipped with sleeping cars during the first weeks of operation. It was not until June, 1881, that construction was resumed on the O&C south of Roseburg. This nine-car all-Pullman train alternated with the "City of San Francisco" and the "Forty-Niner" to provide luxury passenger service every other day between San Francisco and Chicago. New terminal facilities at Avondale replaced the old yard at Algiers which had been the railroad terminal for 30 years. This was bettered by the rival camp and brought the boast from Crocker that his men could lay ten miles of track in a day. In the 1920s the road was picked up by Southern Pacific and eventually fully merged into its system by the early 1960s. Connection was made there with the Southwest's historic stage coach and freighting lines, first of which were the Southern Overland Mail opened in July 1857, over a route from San Antonio to San Diego, and the Butterfield Stages on a route from San Francisco to Tipton, Mo., with rail connection to St. Louis. backing the system continued to grow from its original founding in the SP applied to the ICC in October, 1922, and after an extended hearing, the Commission on February 6, 1923, approved SP's control of the Central Pacific as being "in the public interest." Yard trackage was increased and sidings extended at several terminals. Trains were operated to Chico on July 2, 1870; to Tehama, August 28, 1871; Red Bluff, December 6, 1871, and to Redding on September 1, 1872, where the terminus remained 12 years while the builders in Oregon were in and out of the financial wringer. Tables were placed between seats of the sleeping car sections. Yet, on that date there were jobs open for more than 9,000 employes. While it was obvious that government freight and passenger business required preferred attention, SP had. Carrizozo a year later, and Santa Rosa in 1902 via subsidiary El Paso This latest development would add 132 miles to the PFE'S traffic in 1944 totaled 451,885 cars, the third year in succession that carload shipments reached all-time highs. In June, 1909, the Southern Pacific Railroad Company of Mexico was incorporated to carry on the work, and on February 5, 1912, through service was begun over the new 669-mile line between Empalme and Tepic. Otto Perry photo. The system includes 13,000 miles of pole line, with the company owning 44,000 of its 100,-000 miles of open communicating wire. Many locomotives, some of them built as far back as 1901, were brought in from the lines in Mexico and from lines of other affiliated companies. The San Antonio and Aransas Pass Ry. Yuma was the railroad terminus for more than a year. Shipping Receipt, particularly over the Sierra Nevada mountains. Work was begun at Natron, near Eugene, in August, 1909, and the line, commonly referred to as the Natron cut-off, was opened to Oakridge in May, 1912. To give concerted attention to its manpower problem, SP established a centralized Labor Employment Department in September, 1942, with offices in San Francisco, and later with branches in Los Angeles and Chicago. Four parties of engineers went into the mountains early in 1861 under Judah's direction. A 3,108-foot tunnel at the summit was the longest of 18 bores. 1940. The original route of the Central Pacific north of Great Salt Lake became a branch line in 1904 when SP opened a shorter main line over a trestle and fill built across the lake – the Lucin Cut-off. West Oakland Shops were selected for training naval personnel in the operation and maintenance of big Diesel engines, and groups of Marines were given specialized training in the company's Los Angeles Shops. The Last Spike was "unspiked" during a ceremony at Promontory on September 8, 1942, the track materials for 120 miles between Corinne and Lucin being salvaged for the war effort. In 1944 the freight tonnage being moved by the S.P. Greatest encouragement on Pacific Lines came from the fact that 5,500 men and women were added to payrolls. - 1940 - only 49% of eligible women voted (68% of men did) ... trade with Northern Sonora & outpost in freight trade between El Paso & LA • 8,000 in Tucson in 1880 • Railroad destroyed the freight wagon trade & brought in Anglos • 1894 American Protective Association formed & Hispanics responded by forming mutualistas. In addition to these equipment expenditures made wholly by SP, the company shared jointly with Union Pacific in the $23,000,000 purchase of 5,723 Pacific Fruit Express refrigerator cars during 1936-41, and in the $5,000,000 purchase of 1000 Pacific Fruit Express cars during the war period. Much less could they have foreseen that the Promontory Last Spike was to be only one of many "last spikes" commemorating in succeeding decades the building of new lines into other regions as the Central Pacific founders and their successors opened vast western and southwestern areas to amazing development. The Coast Line as it exists today was not opened through to Los Angeles until after the turn of the century. Over 250 persons were given free care at the company's hospital. The great metropolis of today was then a sleepy, little Mexican city with a population of less than 10,000. Some 4,000 women in non-clerical positions were handling jobs formerly done exclusively by men. Southern Pacific's satisfactory operations were allowed to continue unchanged when the federal government held nominal control of the nation's railroads for three weeks beginning December 27, 1943, to insure uninterrupted rail service during a nationwide railroad wage controversy. With its network of 441 miles of electric lines and 630 miles of motor bus fines radiating from Los Angeles, the Pacific Electric is one of the largest operators of interurban passenger service in the world. Co. Construction of this line, involving difficult and costly engineering work extending over twelve years, was still underway when the first World War broke. Construction on Lucin cut-off began March 17, 1902, and on November 13, 1903, tracks from the east and west shores met near the center of the lake. Even before the first rails were laid, the American Civil War had ended, the Transcontinental Railroad had been completed, and the surrounding states (Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas) had established rail systems. This was granted later in the year, to become effective as soon as adequate substitute service was available to commuters. To simplify the corporate structure and to effect substantial economies, particularly through eliminating a vast amount of accounting detail, the several individual corporations comprising SP's lines in Texas and Louisiana made application to the ICC on Oct 24, 1932, to merge their properties into a single corporation, the already existing Texas and New Orleans Railroad Co. Merger of 12 operating companies with T&NO became effective June 30, 1934. On SP's lines in Texas and Louisiana the same type of expedited merchandise freight service was being performed by the railroad through the Southern Pacific Transport Company which began operations in Texas on August 1, 1930, and Southern Pacific Transport Co. of Louisiana, Inc., which began operations in Louisiana on April 16, 1932. Numerous conferences were held with the railroad's top men, and a proposition was submitted to the county's voters that won favor in an election on November 5, 1872. With this expansion of activity came the need for more highway operations and additional equipment. SP also joined in the inauguration of streamlined, lightweight, luxuriously comfortable passenger trains; in the instituting of coach-tourist car trains for economy travel; and in placing stewardess-nurses on certain transcontinental trains. New Mexico was added to the Rio Grande, July 27, 1930; Western took over the East Bay Electric on October 16, 1930, also the Stockton Division on May 1,1931; and Shasta Division was linked to Sacramento Division on September 15,1932. Another link in the Coast Line route of today's famed "Daylight" streamliners between San Francisco and Los Angeles, was opened March 31, 1901, when first trains operated between the two cities, making use of the Santa Paula branch between Santa Barbara and Saugus to bring trains into Los Angeles over the San Joaquin Valley line. There were no power tools of any kind, such as are common on big construction jobs today; even dynamite was not then in general use. These lines operated a total of 11,285 miles of track, which represented a decrease of about thirty-three percent since the peak reached in 1932. This project had its beginning when the Oregon Eastern was organized by SP in August, 1905, to build east from near Eugene across the Cascades. 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