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Union Pacific Railroad

(Arrived 1858 as Missouri Pacific)


From the 1980 History of Moniteau County:

During the 19th century, America was rapidly expanding. This was true especially west of the Mississippi River due to the very low cost of fertile land. This mass migration called for faster and better transportation service. Before the middle of the century the railroad had reached the Mississippi from the east.


The Pacific Railroad (Missouri Pacific) was incorporated March 12, 1849. The first train was operated December 23, 1852, a distance of 5.22 miles. The first train arrived in Jefferson City March 13, 1856.


The McGirk Depot (date unknown)


In 1853 residents of Moniteau County subscribed $75,000 to the capital stock of the Pacific Railroad. Subscription was confirmed by the court and bonds were given to the company on condition that the road be built adjacent to Jefferson, California and Georgetown road (US 50) as surveyed in 1850. The first train arrived in California May 14, 1858 and the road was completed to Tipton July 26th. The railroad operated a fleet of 12 steamboats between Jefferson City and Kansas City serving Sandy Hook and Lupus. Between Tipton and San Francisco service was provided by stage coach.


Area of California adjacent to what is now City Hall with the Depot in the upper right.


The California Depot


The Osage Valley and Southern Kansas Railroad (Versailles Branch) was incorporated November 21, 1857. Trains operated between Tipton and Boonville in November 1868 and through to Versailles July 1, 1880. This road served Tipton and Fortuna in Moniteau County and was abandoned in 1936.


The Tipton Depot


There was a Jefferson City, Lebanon and Southwestern Railroad. It was also known as the Bagnell Branch of the Missouri Pacific. Contract for this road was awarded on October 10, 1871. Work had hardly begun when it was discontinued. In 1880 financier Jay Gould became interested and agreed to finish construction as far as the Osage River at Bagnell, stipulating that upon completion of the road it would be turned over in its entirety to the Missouri Pacific. The road was completed August 24, 1884 and removed in 1962. Enon was served by this road.


The Jefferson City, Boonville and Lexington Branch of the Missouri Pacific, known as the River Route was completed June 3, 1902. This road serves Lupus and Sandy Hook. Due to light gradients nearly all heavy trains move via this route.


Missouri Pacific Transportation Company (Bus Line) was organized November 15, 1928. During World War II and a number of years thereafter 8 daily schedules were provided. Continental Trailways bought this line from Missouri Pacific in 1956.


Missouri Pacific Truck Line began operating June 1, 1938. This operation provides less than car load service daily.


Until 1965 the railroad carried, besides passengers and freight, nearly all US Mail, parcel post and express.



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