SP San Antonio-Brownsville/McAllen, TX Line

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SP San Antonio-Brownsville/McAllen, TX Line

Postby XC Tower » Sun May 20, 2012 7:12 am

I'm looking for any history on this route. Does anyone know when and why this route was abandoned? I see on a map two small portions: San Antonio to Elmendorf plus at Brownsville, seem to be still in operation.
On a side note: an in-law of sorts who grew up near Falfurrias, TX, said her mother, hearing a whistle, would tell her to run out to see the "little pig", a Southern Pacific steam locomotive pulling a train across the road-crossing. I wish I knew what type of locomotive she was referring to...
Thanks in advance.
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Re: SP San Antonio-Brownsville/McAllen, TX Line

Postby Nonstopmaximum » Sun Dec 03, 2017 1:59 am

I'm not sure if you have picked up any new information about the line since you've posted but seeing as you're still active I'll give the benefit of the doubt. As far as I know the line that goes through San Antonio and Elmendorf formerly ended in Corpus Christi before most of the rail was removed. This line was owned by various smaller railroads which were partially owned by Southern Pacific for years prior to SP completely taking over in the 1920s and downgrading the line to secondary status for which it continued largely uninterrupted until the 1980s. A large portion of the route was abandoned due to a bridge being destroyed in a derailment in 1987 and the cost was deemed too expensive to repair. Service to Kenedy continued until 1993 after which point all of the track was abandoned for a few years until most of it was removed in 1997-1998.

Keep in mind now since you've posted that instead of the track ending abruptly a little after the loop 1604 bridge and small refinery that new trackage has been placed where the removed once was and a large railyard development known as Alamo Junction can now be found a little further down. As for the line in Brownsville I think you might be referring to a part of Missouri Pacifics Gulf Coast Lines which as far as I know various parts of the line are now owned by either Union Pacific or Kansas City Southern. The Texas Transportation Museum website has a great article by Hugh Hemphill which tells a little more about what i've previously described: http://www.txtransportationmuseum.org/h ... sville.php
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