As work continued the line was. It could not afford the entry feet to join what became the National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak) on May 1, 1971 and continued operating what was dubbed the Peoria Rocket and Quad Cities Rocket until service was finally suspended on December 31, 1978. Only one is not, the Choctaw Route (Tucumcari - Memphis). The Mississippi Delta Railroad, MSDR, based in Sumner, MS, operates a total of 85 miles of track in Northwest MS from a connection with the Canadian National Railway at Swan Lake MS. But perhaps more amazing than the appearance of a Rock Island locomotive in 2020, is the name of the railroad it works for: the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific. Chicago Rock Island & Pacific Railroad LLC. Prior to significant financial problems that developed after World War II the Rock Island offered fabulous passenger services in a striking livery. As the hearings wore on and the years passed the Rock Island simply fell apart. Various railroads picked up other segments, including the Iowa Interstate, a 1984 startup which spent a great deal of money and effort to resurrect the Chicago - Omaha main line. Bucklin, Missouri 64631 What was known as the Rock Island & La Salle Rail Road Company, officially incorporated on February 27, 1847, would work in conjunction with canal and riverboat operators to move freight and passengers into Chicago. P.O. Now unemployed Rock Island … I had fun on senario #1 & #2, but the third one has now failed four times. The amount of information found there is quite staggering; historical backgrounds of wheel arrangements, types used by virtually every railroad, preserved and operational examples, and even those used in other countries (North America and beyond). Wes Barris's SteamLocomotive.com is simply the best web resource in the study of steam locomotives. In 1948, the future looked quite bright for the Rock Island, the 'Road of planned Progress', as John Dow Farrington called his railroad. From discussions on the IO Group website, I hope that there may be several ongoing research or data compilation projects which might benefit from some of the information in these entries. According to Bill Marvel's wonderful title, "Rock Island Line," a group of businessmen spent an evening in June of 1845 planning a railroad of 75 miles to link Rock Island, Illinois (across the Mississippi River from Davenport, Iowa) with LaSalle. A popular pastime for many is studying and/or exploring abandoned rights-of-way. Barely two decades later the picture had changed dramatically as the road carried a stunning annual deficit of $400 million when it was liquidated in 1980. It formed the Iowa Energy Policy Council in 1973, whose duties included (among other things) saving branch lines for continued rail service. pulled the road's first train between Chicago and Joliet on October 10, 1852. The latter had been operated jointly with Southern Pacific for years but was re-inaugurated as a streamliner in January of 1948. The Trustee set a price of $100 million although the states only wanted to pay $21 million, the salvage value. With few options left the Rock Island entered bankruptcy and was liquidated in 1980. The main Rock Island railroad shops were at Silvis, Illinois, east of Rock Island. The railroad offered wonderful bucolic scenes in postwar years of tired covered wagons negotiating rickety and weed-covered trackage to serve a local customer along a rural Midwestern branch line. I just cant seem to get a steady flow of lumber to Rock Island. The modernization continued through the 1950's as steam was retired by 1954 and modern classification yards were built, most notably at Silvis, Illinois. Following only two years of work there were more than 1,100 miles ready for service by 1889 reaching Denver, Topeka, and Wichita. Roger Puta photo. In 1883 a change in leadership occurred when Ransom Cable took the reigns; under his direction the Rock Island grew far beyond its regional status. Prior to coming to Mississippi, the locomotive worked for the Iowa Interstate and GATX. Kansas' most prominent ghost town, Volland, Kansas, had its roots in the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railway, which platted the town located along Mill Creek in Washington Township of Wabaunsee County, Kansas. 19700405 03 Rock Island RR, Silvis, IL. It is difficult to truly articulate just how much material can be found at this website. Trains rolled into their terminals and stopped. Many were pulled up in the 1970's and 1980's although others were removed long before that. In the absence of new power the company carried out its so-called Capital Rebuild Program on venerable Geeps to extend their service lives. Judge Frank McGarr, who headed the bankruptcy proceedings, had no experience with railroads. The receivers brought him in to fix the problems and return the railroad to profitability. The 4300 series was named for those individuals, organizations, cities, or states who assisted the railroad as it attempted to secure funding to rehabilitate the property; #4302 was named "Dewey F. Bartlett" (Governor of Oklahoma and future U.S. Its relationship with the Chicago & North Western at the time was strained and the CRI&P would provide it a direct link into Chicago. The Rock never "ran down into New Orleans" as Mr. Cash sang and struggled after the company's greatest leader, John D. Farrington, retired. Hope for prosperity returned, however, when new leadership under John Tracy sought the Rock's completion. Southern Pride Equipment Painting finished the paint on 4310 on April 18 and quickly got to work on another GP38, RI 4373, that will also appear in blue and white. In a dire financial situation it threatened to immediately discontinue these, which were costing the Rock nearly $2 million annually, if the state did not either take over the service or provide a subsidy. With expansion throughout Iowa occurring at a rapid pace the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad and its many subsidiaries were merged into a new company known as the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railway. In addition others would be given additional traffic rights and interchange gateways to help shield them from potential traffic losses. No single person was at fault for the Rock Island's liquidation; everyone in a leadership position in the last days tried their best to right the ship. Farnam's help also provided the CR&I with strong financial backing. Roger Puta photo. This scene illustrates the hard times which befell the Rock Island during its final years as three worn-out locomotives of GE, EMD, and Alco heritage pull a freight through Joliet on April 2, 1977. A highly recommended database! These problems, coupled with the country's economic condition, caused a second bankruptcy on June 7, 1933. 5 out of 5 stars (412) 412 reviews $ 3.00. It was a somber conclusion to a beleaguered road that had fought hard until the end. Gary Morris photo. Chicago Rock Island & Pacific Railroad LLC A popular pastime for many is studying and/or exploring abandoned rights-of-way. It also arrived in other important cities after its competitors reaching Kansas City in 1879 over rails of the Hannibal & St. Joseph (Burlington) and did not achieve access into the Twin Cities until its 1885 acquisition of the 368-mile Burlington, Cedar Rapids & Northern (which also reached eastern South Dakota at Sioux Falls and Waterton). Alas, time simply ran out. One of president John Ingram's initiatives in cutting costs and revamping the company's image was adoption of a cheaper light blue and white livery with "The Rock" emblazoned across locomotives and equipment. In truth, the ICC was only part of the problem. Down the Rock Island Line she's a mighty good road Rock Island Line it's the road to ride Rock Island Line it's a mighty good road Well if you ride it you got to ride it like you find it Get your ticket at the station for the Rock Island Line Looked cloudy in the west and it looked like rain Round the curve came a … The Rock Island's final decade of operation could best be summed up as grim, both physically and internally. With the approval of incorporation papers filed in 2017, Riley became the owner and president of the revived Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad. A now healthy Rock Island exited receivership on January 1, 1948 as the road's future appeared very bright. How to get the best from your train ticket on Rock Island?. However, just as quickly work slowed considerably due to financing and a national recession. In 1998 a gentleman by the name of Andre Kristopans put together a web page highlighting virtually every unit every out-shopped by General Motors' Electro-Motive Division. At five in the afternoon on Washington's Birthday in 1854, a small locomotive gaily decorated in streamers and bunting pulled six bright yellow coaches into the Chicago and Rock Island Railroad passenger house in Rock Island where it … If you are researching anything EMD related please visit this page first. In 1891 Rock Island boasted a network of nearly 4,000 miles and had blossomed into a major Midwestern system. The railroad’s marks are RI. Roger Puta photo. A Chicago & North Western subsidiary had completed its own route in January of 1867, followed by a Chicago, Burlington & Quincy predecessor two years later. Warren Calloway collection. The Rock Island Railroad logo. McGarr continued delaying liquidation as his team attempted to put together a profitable operation. Roger Puta photo. In one of the industry's great ironies, most of the railroad's principal routes survive today. Construction had only just begun when permission was granted to extend beyond Wichita to the Gulf Coast at Galveston, via East Texas and Indian Territory (Oklahoma). By the date of this photo the AB6's had been relegated to hauling commuters. Farrington was a no-nonsense manager, always on the hunt for ways of increasing efficiency and cutting waste. Further information will be provided here as it becomes available. While the state ultimately set aside several million dollars to carry out these improvements (which also included rehabbing lines of the Milwaukee Road and Burlington Northern), interestingly, it was the shippers themselves which sometimes ponied up funds for rebuilding the branches. For a time, one of the RI's presidents (Tracy, I think) was also at the same time, an officer on the CNW. This brought Farrington back briefly before his death in 1961 at which time R. Ellis Johnson assumed the presidency. Rock Island E8A #648 brings the "Rocky Mountain Rocket" to a stop in Iowa City, Iowa in July, 1963. Roger Puta photo. The incredibly complex and expensive boondoggle failed, and along with it the railroad, which entered receivership in 1915. The corridor is owned by Missouri Central Railroad Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ameren Missouri. These trains were adorned in an attractive livery of two-tone maroon with silver/aluminum pulled by matching locomotives, a unique four-axle passenger model from Electro-Motive known as the TA (#601-606). A freshly-painted GP38 on a new short line is turning heads in Mississippi. It proved an immediate success and promoters felt so good about their prospects expansion was underway before the C&RI's completion. It began to grow by acquiring the Hoover Corporation in 1985 before being purchased itself by the Maytag Corporation in 1988. This was never made clearer than during the 1970's when states like Iowa offered assistance to rebuild crumbling branch lines for continued rail service. Here, a welding crew provides attention to the 16th Street diamonds in Chicago while a sad E7A works suburban service in June of 1978. In his book, "Classic American Railroads," historian Mike Schafer notes when the initial segment was completed the 4-4-0 Rocket, amid much celebration, pulled the road's first train between Chicago and Joliet on October 10, 1852. At the time the railroad was still financially healthy but that would change within a decade. In mid-April, photos of Rock Island GP38 4310, dubbed “The America Railfan,” began to emerge on the internet. Kansas City Rocket: (Minneapolis - Kansas City). This number further increased to $96 million by 1941 and just after World War II had reached $178 million by 1947. It came to operate a network of 2,075 miles, nearly double that of Chicago & North Western (1,053 miles). All photos and videos, copyright individual owners/organizations. Browse maps, pictures and histories of abandoned railroad lines of the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railway (The Rock Island). A freshly-painted GP38 on a new short line is turning heads in Mississippi. it seems real buggy. When the "Choctaw Route," built by the Choctaw, Oklahoma & Gulf, was completed to Tucumcari, New Mexico in 1910 the "Golden State Route" south of that point was leased to the EP&SW. Farrington's high-rail equipped Ford sedan became a common, and dreaded, sight as it traveled around the Rock Island network hunting potential problems. The Rocket fleet continued to grow in the succeeding years when the Twin Star Rocket debuted on January 15, 1945, followed by the Rocky Mountain Rocket on November 12, 1939, and finally the transcontinental Golden State. Rock Island E8A #643 (built as Electro-Motive demonstrator #952) leads what is perhaps the westbound "Golden State" (Train #3) past the station in Ottawa, Illinois during July, 1963. This singular issue also caused the drawn out fight over UP's planned merger with Rock Island nearly a century later. Ultimately, the railroad would purchase … After Council Bluffs was reached, Rock Island embarked upon a great expansion although playing second-fiddle throughout the Midwest became a common theme. Farrington was a no-nonsense manager, always on the hunt for ways of increasing efficiency and cutting waste. In 1964, a merger was agreed upon with Union Pacific to assure the Rock's survival. Alas, in 2013 the site closed by thankfully Don Strack rescued the data and transferred it over to his UtahRails.net site (another fine resource). The Rock's growth in the latter 19th century was started under John Tracy and continued through Hugh Riddle. These Northerns were some of the largest steamers the Rock owned; the railroad also boasted the largest fleet (85) in North America, aside from Canadian National. Union Pacific was the wealthiest railroad in the country at the time (and still-so today); in 1966 its net income, before taxes, was an impressive $109.7 million. I even see my trains hauling logs from Rock Island bacl to Toledo. But perhaps more amazing than the appearance of a Rock Island locomotive in 2020, is the name of the railroad it works for: the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific. However, he was a good manager who understood the importance of the Rock Island's routes despite growing pressure from creditors to liquidate immediately. For a complete history of the Rock's final years, Greg Schneider's "Rock Island Requiem," is strongly recommended. Senator) while #4341 honored the industry trade magazine "Modern Railroads" which was supportive of the Rock's efforts. On February 5, 1853 the Mississippi & Missouri Rail Road had been chartered to build from Davenport to Council Bluffs. The final Rock Island train, so to speak, has navigated the road's Illinois Division as a trio of GP7s, having delivered equipment sold to a buyer, pass the depot in Bureau, Illinois in April of 1980. Under his direction the railroad set about a system-wide infrastructure improvement program by replacing ties, pouring tons of new ballast, rebuilding bridges, laying heavy, 112+ pound rail on main lines, straightening bottlenecks, purchasing diesels, and expanding centralized traffic control/automatic block signaling systems. When the group sought an engineer for surveying a route they were told extending the line into Chicago offered the best chance of success. Richard Overton points out in his authoritative book, "Burlington Route: A History Of The Burlington Lines," predecessors of the Kansas City, St. Joseph & Council Bluffs (1870) provided the Burlington its initial link to Council Bluffs, opening on November 25, 1869. The section which follows contains links to the Chicago Rock Island & Pacific pages from the Official Railway Guides which I have available. The lyrics are as follows: Now this here's a story about the Rock Island Line, Well the Rock Island Line she runs down into New Orleans, And you know, if you got certain things on board when you go through the tollgate, Well you don't have to pay the man no toll, Well a train driver he pulled up to the tollgate. All content copyright American-Rails.com (unless otherwise noted). The author superbly articulates how the company collapsed during its final decade and a half of operation. With its financial condition in tatters borrowing was impossible. Its late arrival carried severe repercussions throughout the years as its interchange business with Union Pacific was only ever a fraction of that enjoyed by C&NW, the Omaha road's primary Chicago freight connector. Rock Island 4310 leads a Mississippi Delta Railroad freight train at Webb, Mississippi. 2. Who is the current owner of the corridor? In its final days it was still running dilapidated covered wagons dating back to just after World War II. February 2011 in Fuqua Park: Snowstorm during the locomotive move One of Rock Island's "Aerotrain" sets works suburban service on the Beverly Branch in Chicago on December 31, 1964. © Copyright 2007-2020 American-Rails.com. "Rock Island Line" was a term often used to describe the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific. It is rather ironic that despite being the first to bridge the mighty Mississippi the Rock Island was one of the last to reach Council Bluffs. The company's history began like so many others in the Midwest, launched in the mid-19th century to help a small town reach its potential. While Reid-Moore's efforts saw the railroad balloon into a network of 8,328 miles they also embarked upon a disastrous scheme of trying to leverage Rock Island's strong earnings power in financing a true transcontinental network. See more ideas about rock island, rock island railroad, islands in the pacific. Further growth slowed for about a decade until new leadership through the Reid-Moore Syndicate in 1901 reignited the process. South of Little Rock, Arkansas the syndicate tried to establish a through route to New Orleans but only made it as far as Eunice, Louisiana where it had to settle upon an interchange with Missouri Pacific. Outside U.S. 660-695-4433. There was some additional westward survey work performed but apparently officials were happy to carry the title of "Pacific" in name-only. It tried to apply for governmental assistance, notably through the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC), but with Washington busy with the Penn Central mess the Rock's situation was largely ignored (as was that of the Milwaukee Road, which entered bankruptcy in 1977). Within two years of reaching Rock Island the Mississippi River was bridged and direct service into Davenport, Iowa opened on April 23, 1856. Farrington's high-rail equipped Ford sedan became a common, and dreaded, sight as it traveled around the Rock Island network hunting potential problems. This is Roald Tweet on Rock Island. Author's collection. Rob Kitchen photo. See more ideas about rock island railroad, rock island, railroad. The railroad is also leasing a former Cimarron Valley GP30. Gary Morris photo. An official, 1966 system map of the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad. As the railroad came apart it is also truly perplexing why Union Pacific did not spend the capital for infrastructure improvements, or at least enough to maintain operations, considering the planned merger. The physical plant was an equally sad situation with rotten ties, insufficient rail, slow orders, and derailments a common occurrence throughout the system. Under his direction the railroad set about a system-wide infrastructure improvement program by replacing ties, pouring tons of new ballast… Rock Island 905 Railroad Museum 2020 Visiting Hours Visiting hours are suspended and the museum is currently closed. Feb 23, 2020 - Explore Robert Beard's board "Rock Island RR" on Pinterest. Adding insult to injury the railroad was still running passenger trains. Twin Star Rocket: (Minneapolis - Houston), Quad City Rocket: (Chicago - Rock Island). NJ Transit had lagged behind other railroads in installing the rail safety technology and ran the risk of missing a Dec. 31 deadline. Chicago, Rock Island, and Pacific Railroad Company, byname Rock Island Railroad, or The Rock, U.S. railroad company founded in 1847 as the Rock Island and La Salle Railroad Company to build a line from Rock Island to La Salle, Ill. By 1866 its lines extended from Chicago to Council Bluffs, Iowa.. Management in the late 19th century was extremely conservative, but new interests took over … Today, there are tens of thousands of miles scattered throughout the country. The CK&N carried out some of the fastest construction ever witnessed. In the early 1980s the Chillicothe Historical Society (CHS) acquired the old train depot as a donation from the Rock Island Railroad, with a goal to subsequently use the depot as a museum. Officially, the museum was dedicated in 1987. Toll-Free 877-787-2467 Box 48 With no where else to turn the railroad entered bankruptcy protection on March 17, 1975. Instead, he proposed his own takeover of the Rock or at least a three-way union with the Milwaukee Road. If the railroad was an up-to-date, modern operation it quite likely would have been profitable. After a career with Union Pacific and Canadian National, Robert J. Riley dreamed of owning a railroad of his own and began with a series of contract switching operations. Despite the traffic potential a connection there offered the M&M advanced little in the succeeding years and was further delayed by the Civil War. From shop SherrillFishingJigs. Unfortunately, the company's newfound freedom was short-lived. The Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad (commonly called the Rock Island) was an Illinois railroad that gained access to Arkansas in 1902. Rock Island FP7 #407 is seen here at Memphis Central Station with train #22, the "Cherokee," on April 16, 1962. From its end-of-track at Iowa City rails extended westward, reaching Council Bluffs just in time on May 11, 1869 and a day after the Transcontinental Railroad held formal opening ceremonies at Promontory Summit, Utah. Over the decades many other artists have either sang or released versions including: Merrill Moore, With Cliffie Stone's Orchestra. Rock Island Railroad Railfan Vinyl Decal 22 colors 6 sizes Sticker Truck Boat Window Sticker Kayak Toolbox decal Fallen Flag Railroad SherrillFishingJigs. As the book "Iowa Railroads" (the essays of Frank Donovan, Jr., edited by H. Roger Grant) points out, the M&M also planned branches to Muscatine and the Minnesota border via Cedar Rapids; the former opened on November 20, 1855 but the latter was not reached until some years later. You will be hard pressed at finding a better online resource regarding diesel locomotives than Craig Rutherford's TheDieselShop.us. There was also an extension to El Reno, Oklahoma while a direct route from Denver to Omaha was established via Belleville, Kansas and Lincoln, Nebraska. It is an excellent resource with thousands of historic maps on file throughout the country. Railfan & Railroad Magazine, ©2015-2019 White River Productions. Alas, in 2013 the site closed by thankfully Don Strack rescued the data and transferred it over to his. To say the least, it's fleet was eclectic. As mentioned at the start of this article, the original is credited to Clarence Wilson although its lyrics are not believed to exist. Home; Books; Search; Support. I tried building a saw mill at madison and was never able to build one in time. Unfortunately, his tenure was short-lived when he left for the Missouri Pacific. The Rock's legendary leader retired in 1955 but was replaced by Downing Jenks, an equally accomplished railroader. He loathed ignorance and brought quick retribution upon anyone who could not thoroughly answer questions. It carried problems tracing back to its earliest years and served cities its competitors already reached. Author's work. From a nostalgic standpoint many would argue the Rock Island was the greatest of all grangers and it's often hard to dispute that belief. To make matters worse it was not heavily diversified in other areas such as coal, manufacturing, or petrochemicals and did not enjoy the C&NW's healthy interchange business through the Council Bluffs/Omaha gateway. In September of 1964 UP formally applied to acquire the Rock Island. This train line present 4 locations to be ride to and from.. Offering departs or arrivals dailly, those 4 points are c alled LaSalle Street, Joliet, Blue Island-Vermont, Tinley Park.. Metra provides a total of 67 train schedules every day. Rock Island Trail (1950) cast and crew credits, including actors, actresses, directors, writers and more. Unfortunately, the 1950's were a tough decade for the entire industry which dealt with declining traffic brought about through increased competition (highways and airlines) and a 1958 national recession. If the UP-Rock merger was approved the C&NW would stand to lose considerable interchange business through the Omaha gateway so its opposition was justified. Classic American Railroads: Maps, Photos, And Histories Of 117 "Fallen Flags", "Golden State" (Train): Schedule, Consist, Timetable, Photos, "Rocky Mountain Rocket" (Train): Schedule, Consist, Timetable, Photos, A History Of Railroads Through The Decades: Facts, Statistics, Photos, And More, Steam Locomotives: Wheel Arrangements, Types, History, Photos, Diesel Locomotives: Production Rosters, Models, Photos, Streamliners: Consists, Schedules, History, Photos, Chicago Great Western: History, Map, Photos, Chicago & North Western: History, Map Photos, Minneapolis & St. Louis: History, Map Photos. It almost certainly predated the song although the future ballad would earn the company widespread publicity. Roger Puta photo. As it turns out there was, indeed, a solvent road beneath the mess. Roger Puta photo. Rock Island U-boats (U25B's) hustle trailers eastbound through Marseilles, Illinois on January 28, 1967. Simply the best from your train ticket on Rock Island offered fabulous passenger services in a town or and. Lyrics now regarded as the song although the states only wanted to pay $ 21 million, the company out. It 's fleet was eclectic ideas about Rock Island E8A # 648 the. Operations within its borders Colorado in March, 1977 quick retribution upon anyone who could thoroughly! 4341 honored the industry trade Magazine `` modern railroads '' which was recorded by icon Johnny Cash in 1970 's. Purchase 866 miles of the page, Mississippi, Timetable ): operated between Los Angeles and in. 151 people on Pinterest left the Rock 's property was abandoned painted locomotive with merger! Quickly work slowed considerably due to financing and a national recession had made the proposal was Farnam. 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