Thursday, August 30, 2007

Southern Pacific terminology

From: Adrian Ettlinger

... the SP was never officially named the Southern Pacific Railway. It was founded as the Southern Pacific Railroad, and became the Southern Pacific Company on the merger with the Central Pacific in 1885. ... the wording could appropriately be "Southern Pacific Company's Railway Lines." ...

[from the R&LHS Newsgroup.]


Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...

Re: Southern Pacific "Railway" or "Railroad"

Certainly "Railroad" is preferable to "Railway". ... Without the word "Railroad" used somewhere, it is quite likely that a number of people will not make that connection. "Southern Pacific Company's Railroad (not Railway) Lines" seems a reasonable approach.

For information and context, the Southern Pacific Company was created as a holding company in 1885, and both the Southern Pacific Railroad and the Central Pacific Railroad were leased by it (not merged into it), along with a number of other rail lines and holdings. Southern Pacific Railroad and Central Pacific Railroad each went through various reorganizations and reincorporations while still remaining under lease to the Southern Pacific Company. Finally Southern Pacific Railroad was merged into the Southern Pacific Company in 1956, and Central Pacific (by this time) Railway was merged into the Southern Pacific Company in 1959.

Out in Texas and Louisiana, the SP controlled lines were initially leased to Southern Pacific Company in similar fashion, but Texas passed a law that all railroads operating in Texas had to have corporate headquarters in the state. This led to the separation of the Atlantic Lines for the Pacific Lines of SP for operating and administrative purposes, although still controlled ultimately by Southern Pacific Company. Both the Atlantic Lines and Pacific Lines of SP operated using the unified name "Southern Pacific Lines" from the 1920s through the 1940s (notably on locomotives and passenger cars), although this did not represent a formally incorporated company. Before and after this period the "Southern Pacific" name was used.

Southern Pacific owned a number of railroads in Texas and Louisiana, with varying levels of independant operation and/or lease to other SP companies, all ultimately under direct or indirect control of the Southern Pacific Company. In 1927 all the lines were collected under the Texas & New Orleans Railroad by lease, and merged into that company in 1934. T&NO was itself leased to the Southern Pacific Company during all this time. Finally (1960 ) the courts ruled that Texas could not require interstate railroads to maintain their corporate offices in Texas. T&NO was merged into Southern Pacific Company in 1961.

—Kyle Wyatt

[from the R&LHS Newsgroup.]

8/31/2007 11:48 AM  

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