RAILROAD HISTORY

 

Transcribed by : Tina Easley

tina@grnco.net

http://genealogytrails.com/ark/greene/

http://www.usgennet.org/usa/ar/county/greene

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Paragould & Buffalo-

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Source- Annual Report of Railroad Commision of Arkansas - 1904

Paragould Southeastern Railway Company.
Line Of Road. Miles.

Entire line, Paragould to Hornersville, Mo 22.04

Mileage in Arkansas: Paragould, Ark., to Bertig, Ark 9.00

HISTORY, ORGANIZATION, ETC.

Chartered October 11, 1887; organized August 18, 1893, under the laws of the State of Arkansas, and succeeded to the property of the Paragould & Buffalo Island Railway Company; on November 11, 1893, increased its capital stock from $10,000.00 to $50,000.00; on August 3, 1897, from $50,000.00 to $100,000.00.

DIRECTORS.

W. C. Hasty, Paragould, Ark.

A. Bertig, Paragould, Ark.

T. H. Britton, St. Louis, Mo.

R. H. Bowren, Tyler, Tex.

W. N. Neff, Pine Bluff, Ark.

Number of stockholders last election, 8.

OFFICERS.

President—W. C. Hasting, Paragould, Ark.

First Vice President—T. H. Britton, St. Louis, Mo.

Second Vice President—A. Bertig, Paragould, Ark.

Secretary—D. Loeb, Paragould, Ark.

Treasurer—H. W. Bivins, Paragould, Ark.

Attorney—J. D. Block, Paragould, Ark.

Auditor—J. M. Lowe, Paragould, Ark.

General Manager—W. C. Hasty, Paragould, Ark.

Chief Engineer—M. L. Lynch, Tyler, Tex.

Traffic Manager—W. C. Hasty, Paragould, Ark.

CAPITAL STOCK.

Capital Stock—$100,000.00 in shares of $l00.00 each; total par value authorized and outstanding, $100,000.00; cash realized on same, $100,000.00.

FUNDED DEBT.

First Mortgage Bonds—Amount of authorized issue, amount issued, outstanding and cash realized on amount issued, $ 100,000.00; interest accrued during the year, $6,000.00; amount paid during the year, same.

CURRENT ASSETS AND LIABILITIES.

Cash $ 5,085 42

Due from agents : 189 45

Other cash assets 246 13

Total cash and current assets $ 5,521 00

Balance current liabilities. 16,664 17

Total $22,185 17

Loans and bills payable $ 4,000 00

Audited vouchers and accounts 8,488 85

Wages and salaries 1,894 50

Net traffic balance due other companies 4,234 76

Matured interest coupons unpaid 3,000 00

Taxes not paid 567 06

Total current liabilities $22,185 17

Total $22,185 17

Materials and supplies on hand, $6,567.42.

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Source - Arkansas History Commission - 1906

History of Arkansas Railroads

RAILROADS.

Although well provided with navigable streams, from the organization of the state government many of the leading citizens of Arkansas were early advocates of railroads, realizing their commercial importance. Among the most zealous of these advocates were Roswell Beebe, William E. Woodruff, Sr., Thomas W. Newton, Edward Cross, John Dockery, Robert W. Johnson, Solon Borland and Albert Pike.

As early as 1847 the Arkansas Democrat, edited by William E. Woodruff, Sr., and John E. Knight, outlined and advocated what is believed to be the first suggestion of a railroad from the Mississippi River to the Pacific, the project being for a railroad via Little Rock, following as nearly as possible the thirty-fifth parallel north latitude. For the next few years thereafter these progressive editors advocated the construction of a railroad from Memphis via Little Rock, as did also George C. Watkins, Roswell Beebe and many other intelligent, public-spirited citizens of the State.

Charters were obtained for railroads along lines upon which, many years afterward and under different charters, railroads were constructed. Both capital and experience in the building of railroads were wanting in those early days.

In 1853 Robert W. Johnson, then a member of the house of representatives from Arkansas, secured the passage of an act granting land to the states of Arkansas and Missouri, for the purpose of constructing a railroad from a point opposite the mouth of the Ohio river via Little Rock, to the Texas boundary line, with branches to Fort Smith and the Mississippi River. The Cairo & Fulton Railroad was chartered January 12, 1853, for a line from Fulton to a point on the Missouri state line in the direction of St. Louis. The Memphis and Little Rock Railroad and the Little Rock & Fort Smith Railroad were chartered in 1854— the Cairo & Fulton constituting the main trunk line and the two latter the branches, as contemplated by the act of Congress making the grant.

The first actual construction work of railroads in Arkansas was done by the Mississippi, Ouachita & Red River Railroad Co., chartered in 1853, extending from Eunice on the Mississippi River across the overflowed lands in the direction of the Bayou Bartholomew. In 1858 work was begun in the building of the Memphis & Little Rock Railroad, which had been surveyed in 1854, and subsequently a section of nearly fifty miles from Hopefield, in Crittenden County, opposite Memphis, to Madison, St. Francis County, was completed and operated. In 1859 and 1860 a section from Little Rock to DeVall's Bluff, forty-five miles, was completed and was used in connection with a line of boats from Memphis down the Mississippi and up White River to De Vall's Bluff, or a line of stages from Madison. This method of travel was in vogue until long after the war, when, about 1868, the central section from DeVall's Bluff to Madison was completed, making a continuous line of railroad to Memphis.

After the Civil War but little was done toward the construction of railroads, as there was a dearth of capital, until the reconstruction period from 1868 to 1874, when those who controlled the State assumed a protectorate over all railroad franchises and grants. Stephen W. Dorsey and associates took charge of the Arkansas Central; N. H. Rice, B. F. Rice, Joseph Brooks and associates took control of the Cairo & Fulton; Denckla and associates took possession of the Little Rock & Fort Smith. In 1868 the general assembly passed an act granting to each'land grant railroad aid to the extent of $10,000.00 per mile, and to other roads having no land grants, $15,000.00 per mile. The Cairo & Fulton Company declined the aid; to other roads, bonds were issued amounting in the aggregate to $5,350,000.

These bonds were issued and disposed of at very low figures, and furnished but little if any aid in the construction of the respective roads. Only forty-seven miles of the Arkansas Central had been constructed. In June, 1877, the supreme court of the State declared these bonds to have been illegally issued and, therefore, null and void.

At the present time there are thirty-two railroads in Arkansas, which operate a mileage of 2,952.51 within the State, listed by the state railroad commission as follows:

St. Louis & Iron Mountain Railroad Company 1,044.40 miles

St. Louis Southwestern Railway Company 420.04 "

Choctaw, Oklahoma & Gulf Railroad Company 323.50 "

St. Louis & San Francisco Railroad Company 169.22 "

Kansas City Southern Railroad Company 160.18

Jonesboro, Lake City & Eastern Railroad Co 67.00

St. Louis & North Arkansas Railroad Company 66.57

Little Rock & Hot Springs Western Railroad Co 53.33

Arkansas Midland Railroad Company 47.45

Louisiana & Arkansas Railroad Company 46.78

Pine Bluff & Western Railroad Company 44-34

Arkansas Central Railroad Company 44.32

El Dorado & Bastrop Railway Company 43.94

Mississippi River, Hamburg & Western Railway Co 50.93

Midland Valley Railroad Company 36.73

Arkansas Southern Railway Company 36.04

Texas & Pacific Railway Company 33. 00

Prescott & Northwestern Railway 30.00

Arkansas Southern Railway Company 30.00

Arkansas & Louisiana Railway Company 25.54

Paragould Southeastern Railway Company 22.00

Pine Bluff & Arkansas River Railway 20.11

Louisiana & Northwest Railroad Company 24.76

Arkansas Western Railroad Company 21.70

DeQueen & Eastern Railroad Company 20.12

Ultima Thule, Arkadelphia & Mississippi Railway 28.00

Cache Valley Railroad Company 12.00

Central Arkansas & Eastern Railroad Company 8.50

Warren & Ouachita Valley Railway 8.00

Saline River Railway Company 8.14

Dardanelle & Russellville Railroad Company  5.00

Fort Smith & Western Railroad Company 1.76

Total 2,952.51 Miles.

STATE RAILROAD BOARDS.

There are three important boards, dealing with railroads in Arkansas: (i) State board of railroad commissioners, composed of the governor, secretary of state and auditor, with powers to assess and equalize the property of railroads, sleeping car and telegraph companies within the State; (2) Board of railroad incorporation, composed of the governor, secretary of state, auditor, attorney general, treasurer, and commissioner of mines, manufactures and agriculture, with powers to grant or refuse charters; (3) Board of railroad commissioners, composed of three members elected, one from the first and sixth, one from the second and third, and one from the fourth and fifth congressional districts, for a term of two years, with powers to regulate rates and prevent unjust discrimination and extortion in the rates charged. The act creating a state railway commission was approved March , 1899, and the commission organized March 18, 1899, by electing Hon. Robert Neill, chairman. The commission has published five volumes of vital interest to the people of Arkansas and has already done a great work in the commercial development of our State. In its nature it is mandatory with powers to revise and regulate rates, compel separate statements as to state and interstate traffic, and promulgate demurrage, switching and transportation rules. The present commissioners are J. W. Phillips, chairman, J. E. Hampton and Frank Pace.

Sources Of Information.—Biennial reports of the secretary of state; reports of the state railroad commission, 1890—1903.