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Louis Railway The Tyler Tap, like many early railroads, fell victim to the chronic ailment of financial difficulties.
As previously stated, the road was built by local subscription, with promoters looking hopefully for aid through the land grant policy of the state.
Eventually, they did receive their quota of land, but after its sale there was not enough money to pay off the accumulated debts.
Douglas was determined that the people who had invested their money in this project would not lose a cent on their decision. He felt particularly responsible for many of the shareholders whose faith in him made possible the completion of the railroad.
So, as a last resort, he went to St. Louis and there interested a group of financiers in his railroad. This group, headed by James W. Paramore, owned and operated the St. Louis Cotton Compress Company, and were especially interested to find a means of shipping Texas cotton to St.
They reasoned that by extending the Tyler Tap to Texarkana, Texas, and there connecting with the Iron Mountain Railroad, they could secure a direct route between Texas and the Eastern markets. This arrangement was entirely satisfactory to Douglas, as he could pay back the original investors and also give Tyler its long sought rail connections.
Louis Railway Company was organized with James P. Douglas as President; James W. Goldman, all of St. In order to assure themselves of ample money to complete the road, Paramore went to New York and secured the aid of the banking house of Kuhn, Loeb and Company, and a banker by the name of Woershaffer.
In his memoirs, Samuel W. Fordyce, president of the companyrelates how astonished he was that Paramore was able to interest these Eastern bankers in a project whose future was anything but bright. Originally, the purpose of the Texas and St. Louis was to operate as a feeder to the Iron Mountain, beginning at Texarkana and extending to Waco, Texas, a distance of miles.
Later, however, the promoters decided to expand and, by joining with "Palmer and Sullivan" railway system of Mexico at either Eagle Pass or Laredo, to give St.
Louis a direct connection through Arkansas and Texas to Mexico City. The Sullivan line had about miles completed and expected to reach the capital of Mexico in the early part of Paramore estimated that the 2, miles from St. Louis to Mexico City then could be made in about seventy-two hours.
This was the first scheme for an international railroad system ever attempted on the North American continent. The route specified by the charter passed through the following towns: This paralleled the already constructed International Great Northern Railroad, but as this was the usual procedure of early railroad builders, little criticism can be made as to the foresight of the company officials.
The charters obtained by these pioneering railroads often gave them the right to construct far beyond their financial means, and the Texas and St.
Louis serves as an illustration of this, as it actually constructed only about one-half as much as the charter called for. The company started operation with only two locomotives, the Governor Hubbard and the J.
On seeing the name on the side of the latter engine, Thomas Scott, president of the Pennsylvania Railroad, cautioned his "Gould" friends by the remark, "Gentlemen, that means business. At the end of the fiscal year, March 30,to March 30,the company was still concerned with completing the road between Texarkana and Waco, and the directors decided not to operate until all the separate parts were, unified into one continuous link.
The Texarkana extension reported thirty miles of track, which terminated at Sulphur Fork. It was intended to complete the road to Tyler before the close of the year. The construction west of Tyler reached the Trinity River in December,making a total of miles.
The company purchased five new locomotives of about twenty-four tons each, four new passenger and new freight cars, and with this equipment the rate of construction was increased to such an extent that it was expected that Waco would be reached some time in Paramore became president, succeeding James P.
Douglas had become interested in another railroad, the Kansas and Gulf Short Line, which proposed to build from Tyler to Lufkin. Although he was the most eminent leader of the Texas and St. Louis Railway Company, this is regarded as the initial step in Paramore's successful control of that organization.
Paramore, who later became known as the "Narrow Gauge King," had a very colorful career before he became connected with the Texas and St. Born in Mansfield, Ohio, on December 27,he first gained prominence as a soldier in the Civil War.
He was mustered into service as Major of the Third Regiment Ohio Cavalry, with which he served for three years, receiving his honorable discharge in Called again to the "colors" with the rank of Colonel, he performed gallantly throughout the Tennessee campaigns.long distances to pick up sup- plies.
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