« PreviousContinue »
this portion of the road from Mojave to The Needles was made with the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad Company, and that company is now operating it. All the lines located in the State of California are standard gauge, and the number of miles in operation at the present time are as follows:
The Atlantic and Pacific Railroad was built under a charter granted by the United States government in 1866 for an overland road from Springfield, Missouri, to the Pacific Ocean at San Francisco. The charter carried with it a land grant of all the odd numbered sections forty miles on each side of the line. Surveys were made in the following year or two covering the whole distance, passing southwesterly through the State of Missouri, Indian Territory, Panhandle of Texas, Territories of New Mexico and Arizona, and State of California, to San Francisco. The line touched Vinita, Indian Territory, Albuquerque, New Mexico, Needles, on the Colorado River; thence to the Pacific Ocean. That portion of the line from Springfield to Vinita was built in 1871-72, and that portion from Albuquerque to the Colorado River in 1879–83, and from Mojave, in California, to The Needles in 1882-83; the line from Albuquerque to Mojave being known as the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad (Western Division). This portion of the line was built by money furnished by the New York and Boston capitalists, the former being those interested in the road from St. Louis to Vinita, and the latter representing mainly the Atchison, Topeka, and Sante Fe Railroad Company, the stock being held and funds furnished jointly by these interests. Since its completion in 1883 the road has been operated by these interests jointly, the division in California being purchased from the Southern Pacific Railroad Company in the year 1884.
While this road was unusually expensive to construct, and in consequence of the great amount of grade expensive to operate, it has the further drawback of being built through a country, a small portion of which was very sparsely populated, the balance being a desert. The land grant, while large in acreage, was found to be of little immediate value, and much of it will never pay the expense of survey.
Because of the above, the maintenance and operation of the road could not be financially successful; consequently it has been necessary for the Atlantic and Pacific (Eastern Division), now known as the St. Louis and San Francisco Company, and the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad Company, to sustain the property jointly, drawing heavily on both to meet the annual deficit.
The line was originally constructed in first class manner, with good road-bed carefully laid, and track laid mostly with fifty-six-pound steel rails, and it has been kept fully up to the standard of western railroads.
Several large iron bridges were built on the line during its construction, and at the most important point, viz.: the crossing of the Colorado River, near Needles, a bridge is now being built at a cost of nearly half a million dollars. This had to be done to take the road out of the valley and overflowed lands along the river, where it was subject to continual attack from the river, and its maintenance was difficult and expensive. The line has almost fourteen hundred wooden bridges; and as an illustration of the fact that they have been fully and carefully maintained, it is stated that there has not been a case known since the road has been in operation where a bridge gave way under a train. The only danger to these bridges is from fire, where ignition occurs so easily from the extreme dryness of the timber. This is met by the use of fire-proof paint, to some extent, and a strict surveillance by track-walkers, day and night. The property is now in good condition, with ample equipment for its present business, and the local traffic is gradually growing, so that the hope of a better outlook is a reasonable one.
The line commencing at Albuquerque passes over twelve miles of the track of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad Company, operated under a lease; thence, by its own road, over the divide of the Rio Puerco; thence up the valley of the Rio San José to its head at the Continental Divide, which it crosses at an elevation of seven thousand two hundred and forty-eight feet above sea level; thence down the valley of the Rio Puerco of the west to its juncture with the Rio Colorado Chiquito, crossing the latter near Winslow at an elevation of about four thousand seven hundred feet above the sea. It ascends the inclined plain, rising to the base of the San Francisco Mountains near Flagstaff, where it attains an elevation at the Arizona Divide of seven thousand two hundred and fifty-five feet above the sea level. Thence it passes down the west slope of the San Francisco Mountains through Johnson's Cañon, reaching the plateau at the head of the Rio Verde at an elevation of about five thousand two hundred feet above the sea. It is on the west slope of these mountains that the heaviest grade is encountered: i. e., one hundred and thirty-eight feet per mile.
At a point near the east line of Mojave County the road commences the descent westward to the Colorado River, reaching an elevation at the Colorado River of a little over five hundred feet.
From Needles to Mojave the line passes over what is essentially a desert, attaining a higher elevation than two thousand four hundred feet above sea level, until reaching Mojave, at an elevation of three thousand feet.
Fuel in unlimited quantity exists on the line. A light lignite coal, very good for locomotive use, is to be had at Gallup Station, New Mexico, where four or five coal mines are in operation. Wood is found in abundance about the San Francisco Mountains.
Timber (pine and spruce) is found in great profusion at the latter point, where are situated large mills for cutting the same.
Stone of great variety, some of it the finest building stone in the country or world, is found in vast deposits.
The item of water for locomotive purposes is one of the most troublesome and expensive matters with which the road is obliged to contend, and which adds largely to the cost of operation. There are stretches of from forty to ninety miles where water does not exist, and where it has to be distributed by train, entailing large expense. The water supply for some points has been secured at immense cost, nearly $100,000 having been expended in one case and to supply one station. When it is considered that water stations are needed at a mean distance not to exceed fifteen miles, in consequence of much high grade, it will be seen how serious this expense is.
POINTS OF INTEREST.
The Pueblo villages of New Mexico, and the Pueblo Indians (Lagunas and Acomas); next, the Navajos, a nomadic tribe, and the Supais, Moquis, and Mojaves, of Arizona, are among the matters of interest, the latter, particularly, being good railroad laborers on the desert.
The whole country is mountainous and volcanic, and very interesting geologically. Seventy-five miles west of Albuquerque the line skirts a river of lava in the position that it ceased to flow-one of the best exemplifications of a lava flow in this country. Near Amboy and Lavic, on the California Division, are two recent cones within sight of the track.
At Barstow the line crosses the Mojave River, which at that point sinks in the sand, and is lost.
At Peach Springs the road approaches within eighteen miles of the Grand Cañon of the Colorado, a sight, perhaps, as stupendous and awe inspiring as is to be seen on the continent.
On the plain east of the San Francisco Mountains the line crosses Canon Diablo—a great crack in the limestone rock extending many miles each way-on a trestle bridge of iron, two hundred and thirty feet above the bottom of the cañon.
The Needles Mountains, from which Needles Station takes its name, are a succession of sharp peaks, presenting to the eye a most remarkable appearance. The Colorado River passes through this range in a very narrow cañon.
The line in Arizona and California passes in sight of many mountain ranges, in which there are numerous leads of the precious metals; but, on account of the meager supply of water, these are developed but slowly.
CALIFORNIA SOUTHERN RAILROAD-CALIFORNIA CENTRAL
RAILWAY-(Santa Fe Route).
The California Southern was chartered January 10, 1882, and was completed from National City, on San Diego Bay, via Temecula Cañon, to Colton and San Bernardino in September, 1883, and extended through the Cajon Pass to Barstow, a junction of the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad, in November, 1885, making a total main line mileage of 210.61 miles. In September, 1885, the line of the Southern Pacific, from Colton to Los Angeles, a distance of 58 miles, was leased with equal rights and privileges, and used until the completion of the California Central's line between San Bernardino and Los Angeles, in June, 1887. The mountainous region through which the California Southern line passes, both north and south of San Bernardino, testify to great difficulty and expensiveness, both of construction and operation.
In June, 1887, the California Central Railway completed its line from Los Angeles to San Bernardino, a distance of 62.84 miles, part of the same being the old Los Angeles and San Gabriel Valley Railroad, acquired by purchase; and in August, 1888, the California Central completed its Coast Division south from Los Angeles to a junction with the California Southern Railroad near Oceanside, a distance of 80.90 miles. These two divisions comprise the main line of the California Central, forming, in connection with the California Southern, a direct line between Southern California and the East by way of the Atlantic and Pacific, and Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroads.
Other branches of the California Central were completed as follows:
From Inglewood to Redondo Beach, 10.81 miles, in April, 1888, making a total mileage of 265.59 for the California Central.
The country traversed by the California Central, with the exception of the San Jacinto and Escondido branches, which are located in mountain districts, differs widely from that through which the California Southern winds its course. Easier grades, and long stretches of straight track, mark the path of the former, whose lines, radiating from the beautiful City of Los Angeles, look out on charming suburbs, frequent towns and villages, and broad and fertile valleys devoted to grain, fruit, and stock raising.
The opening of the California Central's lines was attended by a large immigration to the entire region of Southern California, and changed places like Los Angeles, San Diego, Pasadena, and San Bernardino from small towns to flourishing cities, and peopled the districts lying between them and other favored localities with thrifty and industrious settlers.
Both roads are entirely laid with heavy steel rails and otherwise substantially constructed in all respects, and equipped with rolling stock to handle a large amount of business. Large and permanent shops and engine houses have been erected at San Bernardino, Los Angeles, and National City, and convenient and attractive stations ornament the lines from end to end. The terminal facilities at Barstow, Los Angeles, and National City are extensive and valuable, and in addition thereto these companies own two wharves in San Diego Bay—one at San Diego, the other at National City.
The development of Southern California in less than five years, from an unknown and isolated region to a position of renown and commercial importance, is but another illustration of the results which have followed the daring and aggressive policy of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad Company through the past decade. In the past year the expectations of increased business have not been realized, and as the reaction which follows a season of real estate speculation in a new country seldom subsides within several years, it is doubtful if a profitable showing can immediately be made by these roads. Still great things are hoped for in the near future from Southern California, and the management is leaving nothing undone to meet the necessities of the people and foster their interests.
SAN FRANCISCO AND NORTH PACIFIC RAILWAY.
Main line-Point Tiburon, California, to Ukiah, California.
Fulton to Guerneville
5.83 18.27 26.37 2.57 6.00
Ferry, San Francisco to Tiburon...
Sidings, etc., 15 miles. Gauge, 4 feet 89 inches. Rail (steel, 46 miles), 56 pounds.
This company was formed in March, 1889, by the consolidation of the San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad Company, the Sonoma Valley Railroad Company, the Marin and Napa Railroad, built in 1888 from Ignacio to Sears Point, 7.5 miles, the Cloverdale and Ukiah Railroad, built in 1888 from Cloverdale to Hopland, 14.5 miles, and extended 14 miles to Ukiah early in 1889, and the San Francisco and San Rafael Railroad, formerly leased.
The consolidated company issued $6,000,000 stock and $4,000,000 first mortgage 5 per cent, thirty-year, $1,000 bonds, due January 1, 1919, interest payable in New York City, or in Frankfort-on-the-Main, on the first of January and first of July. The mortgage further provides for an additional issue of $500,000 on extensions, at the rate of not exceeding $25,000 per mile of railroad in excess of 160 miles already constructed. The bonds are coupon, with privilege of registration. Provision is made for a sinking fund of $25,000 per annum for purchase of the bonds in the market at not exceeding 110 and interest.
Rolling Stock.- Locomotive engines, 18. Cars-passenger, 38; baggage, mail, etc., 3; freight (box, 95, platform, 303), 398; total, 439. Also 2 cabooses and 44 other cars.
Earnings in 1888, $727,169 61; operating expenses, $481,030 14; net earnings, $ 246,139 47.
The San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad Company (one of the consolidated companies), 108.5 miles, was incorporated June 29, 1877, and formed by the consolidation of the Sonoma and Marin Railroad, chartered November 13, 1874, and the Fulton and Guerneville, chartered May 23, 1877. Road opened from Donahue to Santa Rosa (23 miles), January 1, 1870; to Windsor (9 miles), March 1, 1871; to Grant's (4 miles), April 10, 1871; to Healdsburg (2 miles), July 1, 1871; and to Cloverdale (18 miles), April 15, 1872. The Guerneville branch was opened May 29, 1876, and the Petaluma branch June 2, 1879. Included in the main line was a section of 9 miles, Point Tiburon to San Rafael, leased.
The Sonoma Valley Railroad Company (also one of the consolidated companies), 21.43 miles, was incorporated July 24, 1878; road opened August 23, 1880. The Sonoma and Santa Rosa Railroad was opened August 15, 1882. The two companies were consolidated during 1885.
The branch from Santa Rosa to Sebastopol, 6 miles, is not at this writing (November 1, 1889) quite completed, but will be finished and put in operation at an early date.