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Utah Western Railway (1874-1881)

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This page was last updated on June 18, 2011.

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Overview

The following was written by George Pitchard, published in the March/April 1990 issue of Gandy Dancer, the newsletter of the Wasatch Division of Rocky Mountain Region of the National Model Railroad Association.

This company, created in June of 1874, took over the rights and privileges of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad in September of 1874. Among the material taken over was the one engine delivered to Salt Lake for the SLSV&P, being that road's #2 mogul, the 'Kate Connor.' Received in July 1873, it was never operated by the SLSV&P, and spent most of its time, until taken over by the U.W., in a shed built to house it.

Upon the Utah Western obtaining possession of the engine, in September 1874, John W. Young, the promoter of the Utah Western, paid a fellow by the name of Mr. Holden the sum of $50.00 to repaint the engine to U.W. No. 1, the 'Oquirrh.'

The Utah Western was completed to a point not far beyond Tooele in late 1877, and that was as far as it went. On shaky financial ground for some time, it passed from John W.'s control in 1878 and was sold at foreclosure in 1880. In 1881, the property was bought by the Utah & Nevada Railway, which had been created for that purpose at the beginning of 1881. This was a Union Pacific 'front,' and as soon as the U.P. had 100% of the Utah & Nevada stock, said stock paid a 15% cash dividend, and paid regularly thereafter!

The Utah & Nevada became part of the Oregon Short Line & Utah Northern in 1889, and escaped being widened to standard gauge to become, by many years, the last narrow gauge operation of the Union Pacific in Utah, and the last narrow gauge to run out of Salt Lake City, the last run (regular run, that is) being November 15, 1902.

The engine, as well as one of a similar appearance, bought in 1875 from Brooks as well, were both dropped from equipment in 1891 and probably scrapped at that time, although the tender of the 'Oquirrh' was still in use as a water car in 1899.

The Utah Western's third locomotive, a Baldwin 4-4-0 named 'Jonathan' and bought in 1880, fared somewhat better. In 1892, it was sold to the Sumpter Valley Railway, up in Oregon, and operated on that road for about 20 years. It appears to have been sold in 1912 to the Eureka-Nevada Railway (formerly the Eureka & Palisade), where it operated for a time before being scrapped.

The concept represented by the Utah Western/Utah & Nevada lends itself to modeling in a neat way. It was short, relatively speaking, and its equipment never amounted to more than four locomotives and a pretty basic assortment of cars. Before the line became a 'resort bus line,' there were a few box cars and perhaps 20 or so flat and/or coal cars, with a half-dozen each of coaches & combines and open air excursion cars. Just before Saltair opened, in 1893, the excursion cars numbered about 40. And the business out to Garfield resort was the road's primary revenue; that, and salt.

Timeline

Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad (1872-1874)

June 23, 1871
Judge Clinton already had a hotel out at Lake Point, and bath houses and the like to be put up soon. Also, a fellow named Parkhurst has a lumber yard out there. (Deseret Evening News, June 23, 1871) Clinton's hotel was called 'Lake House'. (Deseret Evening News, June 4, 1872)

April 16, 1872
The 'City of Corinne' sold a few days ago to H. S. Jacobs & Company of Salt Lake City, and the Lehigh & Utah Mining Co., of Mauch Chunk, Pennsylvania, and possession was given yesterday. The mining company is building a reduction works at Stockton. (Salt Lake Herald, April 16, 1872; Deseret Evening News, May 20, 1872)

"On The Lake" item gives some details of the steamboat "City of Corinne." It is 138 feet long, stem to stern, and 28 feet in the beam. Two engines, of 125 horsepower each, drive the stern wheel. Built mostly of Oregon fir, the ribs are eight inches apart, and the hull is planked inside and out with three-inch thick fir. The Captain is a Mr. Evans, the engineer is John Edgecomb, the chief clerk is G. B. Adams, and the steward is Samuel Lancaster. H. S. Jacobs, as part owner, seems to be on hand as the host. (Salt Lake Herald, May 19, 1872)

"Sail Boat. -- The 'Kate Connor,' owned by Bishop Layton, which was lately damaged by a severe storm on Salt Lake, is to be converted into a sail boat. Her engine will be transferred to the grist mill at Kaysville." (Utah Mining Journal, November 14, 1872)

May 3, 1872
Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad incorporated to build from Salt Lake City west to Stockton and the western line of Utah territory, through the valley of the Sevier River. (Utah corporation number 4349)

Although the stated purpose of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche was to be the western line of Utah Territory, its real destination was most likely the mines along the western slope of the Oquirrh range, just 35 to 45 miles southwest of Salt Lake City. Smelters located at Stockton, 40 miles from Salt Lake, included General Conner's original 1864 smelter, the Monheim & Johnson smelter, built in 1866, the Waterman & Smith smelter, built in 1871, the Jack smelter, built in 1872, Chicago Silver Mining Company's "Chicago Smelter", completed in 1873, and the Carson & Bozo smelter, also completed in 1873. Other mines in the area included the Mercur (originally Lewiston) mines, with the Last Chance, Sparrow Hawk, and Marion claims all filed in 1872. The first placer claim was located in Mercur on April 20, 1870. There were also claims in the Ophir district, including the Mountain Lion, the Petalume, the Silver Chief, the Tampico, and the Blue Wing. The first claim in the Ophir district was filed on August 23, 1870, as the Silveropities. Ophir also had the distinction of being the location of the first stamp mill in the Territory, when the Walker Brothers located their 15-stamp Pioneer Mill at Ophir in June 1871, processing about 30 tons of ore per day. (Tooele County, pp. 343, 362, 376; Bliss, p. 176)

March 29, 1873
Gen. Connor, president of the S. L., S. V. & P. R. R., received a telegram from New York, yesterday, with the information that contracts had been closed for 50 miles of iron, two locomotives and five cars, the iron to be shipped by May 1st. (Salt Lake Herald, March 29, 1873)

April 14, 1873
"Official" ground breaking for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad. Seven miles of grade had already been completed. (Salt Lake Herald, April 15, 1873)

"The Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad. Ground was broken on the Salt Lake section of this road on the 14th of April and grading towards the Lake immediately commenced." (Utah Mining Gazette, September 6, 1873)

July 7, 1873
Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche locomotive arrived, along with two flat cars. The locomotive was named "Kate Connor", after General Connor's daughter. The locomotive was built by the Brooks Locomotive Works, of Dunkirk, New York. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, July 8, 1873, "yesterday"; Deseret Evening News, July 10, 1873)

Katherine "Kate" Francis Connor was born in Salt Lake City on September 7, 1863. After 1870, General Connor's wife and children lived in Redwood City, California. In 1872, Kate visited her father, and again in 1879. Her married name was Kate Connor Oliver and she lived until at least late 1931. (Varley, pp. 172, 270, 291)

July 7, 1873
"Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche RR -- we are informed that three-fourths of the grading of this line between this city and Lake Point is now completed, and that a locomotive and two flat cars are on the way for the use of the company,..." (Deseret Evening News, July 7, 1873)

July 8, 1873
"A locomotive for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad arrived yesterday." "Hurrah for the Narrow Gauge." "General Connor informed us last night that the 'Kate Connor' locomotive arrived yesterday from the East... The 'engine is named after the General's daughter, and ... will undoubtedly be a success,..." (Salt Lake Tribune, July 8, 1873)

July 10, 1873
A new locomotive has arrived for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad. It is from the Brooks Locomotive Works of Dunkirk, N.Y. Mr. Pasho, from the company, has accompanied the engine, which is named 'Kate Connor'. also, a couple of flat cars arrived. (Deseret Evening News, July 10, 1873)

July 11, 1873
"Locomotive 'Kate Connor'." "The narrow gauge locomotive, 'Kate Connor';, which arrived on Monday last for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad, is said by engineers to be one of the best narrow gauge locomotives they have seen.

"It was manufactured by the Brooks Locomotive Works, Dunkirk, New York, and weighs, when charged with coal and water, sixteen tons, six hundred and thirty pounds. The feature of this locomotive, which commends it for effective service, is its great steam generating capacity, which is a desideratum in narrow gauge engines."

"The 'Kate Connor' is intended, in the first place, to be used as a construction engine and afterwards for freight. It was brought on to this city by Mr. D. N. Pasho, an engineer and traveling agent connected with the Brooks works." (Salt Lake Herald, July 11, 1873)

July 11, 1873
"The New Locomotive 'Kate Connor'." "Yesterday we paid a visit to the Utah Central depot, for the purpose of inspecting the new locomotive for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad, and on arriving found Gen. Barnum, Supt. Kimball, and a number of men making preparations to unload her. An introduction to Mr. D. N. Pasho, who accompanied the engine from the works, afforded us the opportunity of more closely examining it than we otherwise could. It appears to be of excellent workmanship throughout, furnished with all the appliances of first class engines, and elegantly painted. On inquiring, we learned that it is from the Brooks Locomotive Works, Dunkirk, New York, the president and superintendent of which is expected in the city shortly." (Salt Lake Tribune, July 11, 1873)

July 11, 1873
"At the depot we noticed also two box cars, one construction car, and two hand cars, all for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad. Success to it." (Salt Lake Tribune, July 11, 1873)

July 12, 1873
"New Locomotive. -- We inspected, yesterday, at Salt Lake, in company with General Barnum, the first locomotive of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche R.R., which arrived last Monday. It is a very handsome engine, weighing sixteen tons, six hundred and thirty pounds, with six driving wheels of three feet diameter. It is artistically ornamented, symmetrically proportioned, and will look very beautiful on the new narrow gauge road, which is graded to lake Point, the bridge over Jordan being completed. The locomotive was manufactured by the Brooks Engine Manufacturing Company at Dunkirk, Ohio, and came through in nine days in charge of Mr. D. N. Pasho, who so managed that there was no delay in its passage. Mr. Pasho, regarded the engine with pride, and being 'au fait' in all matters connected with the manufacture of locomotives, would like to set her in trim and run her out on her first trip. But, the road is not quite ready." (Daily Ogden Junction, July 12, 1873)

July 14, 1873
"Engine Builder.""Mr. D. N. Pasho, representative of the Brooks Locomotive Works, at Dunkirk, New York, will leave this evening for the east. Mr. Pasho has but lately returned from Salt Lake whither he went to superintend the putting up, and on the line, of the narrow gauge locomotive Kate Connor. This sixteen-ton engine will be used at first in the construction of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche railroad." (Denver Daily Times, July 14, 1873)

July 19, 1873
On the 18th, the editor looked over the grade and such of the SL, SV&P, with W. C. Rydalch; at the depot, looked over the 'Kate Connor';, "...a shed has been built over the locomotive to protect it from the weather." Also at the depot, for the company, are "two box cars." The bridge over the Jordan was built by Rushton and Winters; piles were driven in 14 feet by a steam pile driver, and the stringers are of heavy red pine. H. P. Kimball and W. C. Rydalch were grading and tracklaying contractors for the SLSV&P. "On leaving the Jordan, the road swings west by south, until it reaches Bassett & Robert's pasture, a distance of some 3 miles. This diversion from a direct line was necessary in order to avoid, as far as possible, the big salcratus lake. From this point the grade runs on an air line a distance of 11 miles, to Millstone Point. It then curves north-west, past the Little Cave, Big Cave, Kesler's, and Black Rock, on the shore of the Great Salt Lake." (Salt Lake Herald, July 19, 1873)

July 1873
"The Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad Company, had received five car loads of iron rails, and would commence laying the track at once. Two hundred tons more was on the way, and 1,000 tons additional contracted for. The locomotive engine, 'Kate Connor,' from the Brooks works, Dunkirk, New York, had also arrived, likewise two box cars, one construction car, and two hand cars. The road was graded and ready for the ties for over ten miles from the city,..." (Utah Mining Gazette, September 13, 1873)

August 12, 1873
"Four hundred tons of iron and another locomotive are also to come on immediately for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche railroad." (Salt Lake Herald, August 12, 1873)

August 21, 1873
"Five carloads of iron for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad have arrived." "The grading on this road is being prosecuted with vigor." (Salt Lake Herald, August 21, 1873)

August 23, 1873
Eight car loads of iron were received for the SLSV&PRR yesterday, making 17 car loads this week. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, August 23, 1873)

August 30, 1873
"Local Summary" "Eight car loads of iron arrived on Friday 22d, at the depot, for ' the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad." (Utah Mining Gazette, August 30, 1873)

September 13, 1873
"Resources of Utah." "Statistics of Progress during the Year 1873"

September 24, 1873
Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche received "a full train of iron and material." Twenty miles of grade completed. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, September 25, 1873, "yesterday")

September 25, 1873
"A full train of iron and material arrived yesterday for the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche R.R., which has been graded twenty miles already, and the company intend laying the track in a few days and pushing the work through to completion." (Salt Lake Tribune, September 25, 1873)

September 25, 1873
Tracklaying began today on the SLSV&P, on the spur to the Utah Central depot, but can't run the engine on the track, as no bolts on hand for the fishplates! (Deseret Evening News, September 25, 1873)

September 26, 1873
"Nineteen kegs of fish-plate bolts for the S.L.,S.V.& P.R.R. were received yesterday, also 260 tons of rails, making about 500 tons of materials received to date. It requires 40 tons of rails per mile..." (Deseret Evening News, September 26, 1873)

September 27, 1873
"Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad." "Track laying on this important road commenced on the west side of the Babbitt block on Wednesday last, and will be continued without interruption until the road is completed to Clinton's, west of the point of the mountain,... Mr. William F. Tully, has charge of the track laying,... Ten flats, two box cars and one locomotive, the Kate Connor, comprises the construction train." "The freight depot, or point of transfer from the Utah Central, will be on the west side of the present Utah Central freight warehouse, and the passenger depot, it is thought, will be located one or two blocks west of the Utah Central block." (Utah Mining Gazette, September 27, 1873)

September 30, 1873
"Unfortunate Suspension""Work on the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad Discontinued." "No Funds Left to Carry On the Great Enterprise." "Owing to the recent financial crisis in the East, the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad Co. have for the present suspended operations." (Salt Lake Tribune, September 30, 1873; Deseret Evening News, October 13, 1873)

late September 1873
Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche stopped work. Throughout the next six to nine months there were accusations by other company officers of mismanagement by H. S. Jacobs. (Reeder, pp. 268-276)

October 4, 1873
"Local Summary." "The Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche railroad has been obliged to suspend, temporarily, on account of the tightness of the money market, caused by the financial difficulties east." (Utah Mining Gazette, October 4, 1873)

October 14, 1873
"At a Standstill" - General Connor tells the Tribune that the SLSV&PRR "...has not as yet resumed operations, and it is uncertain when work will be recommenced." (Salt Lake Tribune, October 14, 1873)

January 5, 1874
"Judge Clinton's faith in the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad has induced him to build a large, three storey rock building, at [Great] Salt Lake, with the intention of putting up bathing houses and all the conveniences belonging to a stylish watering place." (Deseret Evening News, January 5, 1874)

March 28, 1874
Map of Dry Canyon, Ophir district takes up most of the front page of this issue of the Gazette. (Utah Mining Gazette, March 28, 1874)

April 30, 1874
"Another Open Letter", in reply to one in the paper the day before, which opened the floodgates, as-it were, on the bungling of H. S. Jacobs, and its becoming public knowledge. In all of the flap, not much useful equipment information, but this letter of the 30th says that Jacobs "...purchased and sent forward a locomotive and two box cars and hand cars, before the road had been graded a mile,... A freight bill of $1,700 had to be paid on their arrival as the first step in his economical business management for the benefit of the Company." (Salt Lake Herald, April 30, 1874)

(Note: Under dates of April 29th and 30th, and May 5th, 8th, and 10th, there appeared a number of lengthy items bearing upon the failure of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad, and where the fault lay.)

May 6,1874
"New Car." "The Utah Western Railroad Company has just imported from ' the East, a magnificent new passenger car, for use on their road. The car is now at the Utah Central depot, mounted on a flat car, and will probably be placed on the track where it belongs immediately." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, May 6, 1874)

May 10, 1874
A very long item, in which General P. E. Connor relates the best history-to-date of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad Company yet available, and of Jacobs' wrecking of the enterprise through his incompetence and fraudulent dealings. Quotes from a number of Jacobs' own letters, in company records, which point out the duplicity of 'that great failure,' Jacobs. Equipment not mentioned, except in the briefest way possible. (Salt Lake Herald, May 10, 1874)

May 16, 1874
A letter, dated September 4, 1873, from New York, author presently uncertain, but it is someone Jacobs took for a ride, in more ways. than one! The letter is chiefly interesting for this sentence: "You may imagine the mess he (Jacobs) has made of everything; the very locomotive I contracted for from Grant, has been obliged to be resold,..."

May 16, 1874
An unsigned in the paper; dated at New York, September 4, 1873: "Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad." "The following extracts, from a letter received by one of our citizens, throw a flood of light on the actions of Mr. Jacobs, and show how totally unfit he is to retain any office connected with railroading in Utah, and moreover fully justifies the action of the resident officials of the S.L., S.V.& P. Railroad: "The object of this letter is to acquaint you of facts in regard to the claim I have against the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche Railroad." An order for 2,500 tons of rail, from Danville, not closed on account of Jacobs; "I gave Mr. Jacobs my bill of brokerage; which amounted to $2,250, and as he did not settle the same, I sued him as President, for the amount." More hoo-haw on the iron deal - still Jacobs defaulted; a Mr. Hendricks is mentioned." "My brother, in an interview he had with General Connor, has, I think, explained all this,..." "You may imagine the mess he [Jacobs] has made of everything; the very locomotive I contracted for from Grant, has been obliged to be resold, as this fellow could not satisfy him [Grant?], but deceived him in his statement." (Here was the only clue George Pitchard had yet found that suggested SLSV&P no. 1 had been built by Grant.) (Utah Mining Gazette, May 16, 1874)

June 23, 1874
A letter from H. S. Jacobs is published, in which he tries to defend his actions in regard to the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad and the failure thereof. Among other comments, he says: "The rails, together with bolts, fishplates, spikes and switches, with locomotives and cars for 20 miles of road, were purchased by me and delivered at Salt Lake City,..." (Note: One locomotive and two box cars is the entire extent of the equipment known to have been received, hardly the equipment of a 20-mile railroad!) (Salt Lake Tribune, June 23, 1874)

Utah Western Railway (1874-1881)

June 15, 1874
Utah Western Railway was organized to buy the defunct Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railroad. The SLSV&P had been organized in May 1872 to build west from Salt Lake City to Tooele and south to the mining camps in Nevada. The SL,SV&P began grading west from Salt Lake in April 1873, but before they could get tracks laid, financial and management problems developed which caused the company to fail. The new Utah Western assumed the previous road's debt and acquired its unfinished grade between Salt Lake City and Lake Point, "Point of the Mountain", 20 miles to the west. In return for the reorganization, and control by John W. Young, the officers of the SL, SV&P took stock in the Utah Western. The rails for the SL, SV&P, which had remained on the flatcars in Salt Lake City, were sold for use on the Utah Northern because the freight charges had not been paid. (Reeder, pp. 257-280; Athearn, p. 278; Deseret Evening News, August 31, 1874)

August 30, 1874
Article "Utah Western Railway", giving a brief history of the last two years or so; says that passes over the SLSV&P were 'freely issued'; the Utah Western has bought out the S. L., S. V. & P. R. R. entirely. (Salt Lake Herald, August 30, 1874)

August 31, 1874
"Utah Western Railway""Mr. H. P. Kimball, treasurer and superintendent of construction of the Utah Western Railway Co., returned from the east on Saturday night, where he has been with Mr. John W. Young, president of the same company."

"Mr. Kimball went east as agent of the Salt Lake, Sevier Valley and Pioche R.R. Co., to settle up with the creditors thereof and to assist Mr. Young in the business of the new company. All of the debts of the old company have been assumed by the Utah Western, and the old company have agreed to transfer to the new all of their claim to the rolling stock, grade, bridges, &c., and receive therefore stock in the new company." "Passenger cars have been purchased, by Mr. Young, and are on the way. The last named gentleman will remain east for a week or ten days longer, to finish up the business for the new company."

In regard to the SLSV&P iron, this item says "...the freight on the iron and rolling stock remained unpaid, until the firm east who furnished the iron sold the whole of it to Mr. Joseph Richardson, for the Utah Northern Railroad." (Deseret Evening News, August 31, 1874)

September 3, 1874
The Utah Western grade is to be put in shape for the placing of ties and the laying of track; the three major bridges (Jordan River, slough and canal) are completed (Salt Lake Daily Herald, September 3, 1874)

September 11, 1874
"Cars for the U.W. -- Mr. Thomas Green of Williamsburg, formerly of Birmingham, England, arrived here last evening, with two cars for the Utah Western. One is a smoking and baggage car, and the other a drawing room car, named 'Mauch Chunk'. They were manufactured for the Utah Western by Jackson and Sharp, Wilmington, Delaware. They were forwarded to Salt Lake today on the special freight train." (Daily Ogden Junction, September 11, 1874)

September 12, 1874
"Yesterday two cars manufactured for the Utah Western Railway by Jackson & Sharp, Wilmington, Del., arrived in this city. One is a beautiful little passenger car, 'Mauch Chunk';, and the other is an express car. The first shipment of rails will be here in a few days." (Salt Lake Herald, September 12, 1874)

September 12, 1874
"Splendid Cars -- at 8:15 o'clock this morning a couple of the neatest, most commodious and elegant cars ever brought to Utah for use on any of our home lines arrived at the depot for the Utah Western Railroad. At one end of the passenger car there is a division seated with sofas and chairs, sufficient to comfortably accommodate eight persons; the central division includes the dressing compartment, with the necessary conveniences for performing ablutions, and on the other side, a small sub-division with seats and hinged desk and other accommodations for persons desirous of writing, while the other and larger division at the other end of the car has a dozen seats, each large enough to hold two persons, with crimson velvet cushions, and ornamented nickel arms. The decorations of the car are as neat and tasteful as could be desired."

"The smoking and baggage car combined is in keeping with the other, everything being neat, comfortable and trim, and both are self-coupling." "The cars were manufactured by Jackson & Sharp Co., of Wilmington. Delaware, and were sent on to Utah in charge of Mr. Thomas Green, of Williamsburg." (Deseret Evening News, September 12, 1874)

September 25, 1874
"A number of hands commenced work yesterday on the grade of the Utah Western railroad, putting in culverts and fixing it up generally, preparatory to the laying of iron, which is expected shortly to arrive." (Deseret Evening News, September 25, 1874)

October 29, 1874
Item reports that 11-1/2 miles of the grade is ready for iron, and by Tuesday 13 miles will be ready. The U. W. has put up a new water tank, on the southwest corner of the Utah Central depot block, which is connected by pipe with the U. C. tank. Twelve cars of ties have been received in past two weeks, and the first part of the iron was shipped from Ohio on the 19th. (Deseret Evening News, October 29, 1874)

November 11, 1874
Seven car loads of rail arrived yesterday in Ogden for the Utah Western, and will be brought to SLC this morning. Tracklaying to begin tomorrow morning. Rail for the balance of the road, 22 miles, is on the way. (Salt Lake Herald, November 11, 1874)

November 12, 1874
Utah Western began laying tracks west from Salt Lake City on the former Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche grade on November 12. Seven cars of iron rail had arrived the day before, on November 11. The rail had arrived in Ogden on November 10. Enough rail for the balance of track for the road, 22 miles, was supposedly on its way. By November 19, sixteen cars of rail had arrived. Also on November 19, the Utah Western's new locomotive, the "Oquirrh", was steamed up for the first time and run out onto the line's new trackage along South Temple Street. On November 28, a large shipment of ties from Cache valley arrived via the Utah Northern at Ogden, reportedly bound for the new construction on the Utah Western. By November 20th the construction had reached the Jordan river bridge. The road was to be completed to Lake Point by December. (Salt Lake Herald, November 11, 1874; November 19, 1874; November 21, 1874; Utah County Times, November 12, 1874; Daily Ogden Junction, November 28, 1874)

November 12, 1874
Tracklaying to commence today on the UW, seven cars of iron having arrived yesterday. Supposed to be done to Lake Point in December. (Utah County Times, November 12, 1874)

November 19, 1874
Another 16 car loads of iron have arrived for U. W. in S.L.C. (Utah County Times, November 19, 1874)

November 19, 1874
"The Utah Western's beautiful and substantial locomotive 'Oquirrh' had steam up yesterday and was run out on the newly laid track about two blocks down South Temple Street. Tracklaying was progressing..." (Salt Lake Herald, November 19, 1874)

November 21, 1874
Utah Western track reached Jordan River bridge yesterday, and will cross it today. (Salt Lake Herald, November 21, 1874)

November 28, 1874
"Lots of ties at the Utah Northern depot that came from Cache on the narrow gauge road, which is doing considerable freighting. The ties are for the Utah Western Railroad." (Daily Ogden Junction, November 28, 1874)

November 29, 1874
The U.W. tracklayers are now out beyond Brighton field, and laying track down at about half a mile per day. (Salt Lake Herald, November 29, 1874)

December 13, 1874
An item on a special excursion run on the Utah Western, which had 104 passengers, by invite only. "The company was accommodated in two beautiful new passenger cars, one a smoking and baggage car, and the other a first class car, elegantly fitted up, with a drawing room or saloon at one end with Brussels carpet, lounges, chairs, lavatory and other conveniences, and private closet for writing, etc. The company, however, filled these two cars, and an open observation car also." (Deseret Evening News, December 14, 1874, "yesterday")

December 14, 1874
An article on the first day of the Utah Western Railway; "The line commences at the south-west corner of the depot in this city, runs down South Temple street, across the Jordan about a quarter of a mile south of the North Temple street bridge, and then over the prairie westward to Chambers' stage station, at the foot of the West, or Oquirrh, Mountains, and a mile or so south of the point, continuing on to and around the Point, by Black Rock, into Tooele Valley." (Deseret Evening News, December 15, 1874, "yesterday")

December 15, 1874
"Utah Western Railway - It is Now Open to the Public", as of yesterday, the 14th, when the first regular passenger train departed Salt Lake City, with 23 passengers; the mail; Wells, Fargo & Co.'s express; and two cars of ore, at 7:30am. Item says the 6th narrow gauge railroad in Utah. (Salt Lake Herald, December 15, 1874)

January 10, 1875
Utah Western tracks completed to Black Rock, near Lake Point. (Reeder, p. 282, citing Salt Lake Herald, January 10, 1875; Athearn, p. 278)

January 10, 1875
"The Utah Western track having been laid to Black Rock..."The U.W. will be running to Black Rock on and after January 11, 1875. (Salt Lake Herald, January 10, 1875)

January 27, 1875
"The Utah Western Railroad Company is about to commence the manufacture of ten flat cars." The iron parts to be cast of Utah iron, and Utah lumber to be used also. (Deseret Evening News, January 27, 1875)

February 3, 1875
A reporter of the Herald went over the line yesterday; ballasting has been done; terminal at Townsend's, but gap between end of track and Clinton's Landing (Lake Point) is about 200 yards, which should now be filled, and trains will run to Clinton's soon. (Salt Lake Herald, February 3, 1875)

February 7, 1875
Trains to run today and after to Lake Point, or Clinton's. (Salt Lake Herald, February 7, 1875)

February 7, 1875
Utah Western completed to Clintons, site of Clintons Lake House hotel, near present day Lakepoint. (Reeder, p. 282; from Salt Lake Herald, February 7, 1875)

February 25, 1875
"We understand the company has recently purchased two more passenger cars, two freight and also a couple of flats, and that another engine for use on the line is now on the way." (Deseret Evening News, February 25, 1875)

February 28, 1875
An excursion to Lake Point yesterday, for Ft. Douglas crowd; the equipment used is mentioned as being "...two passenger coaches, two flat cars and a caboose." (Salt Lake Herald, February 28, 1875)

March 16, 1875
Grading on Utah Western has commenced beyond the Half-way House; it is about 14 miles to the Sand Bar/Tunnel this side of Stockton, and is to be in operation that far within three months. (Salt Lake Herald, March 16, 1875)

March 27, 1875
W. C. Rydalch, contractor, has informed the Herald that the grade is completed to Halfway House, 4-1/2 miles beyond Lake Point, and tracklaying will commence at once. (Salt Lake Herald, March 27, 1875)

March 31, 1875
Track now laid to Halfway House; trains will run to that point on and after April 1, 1875. (Salt Lake Herald, March 31, 1875)

March 31, 1875
Utah Western completed to Half Way House, which remained the terminal for the road from 1875 until mid 1877. (Salt Lake Herald, March 31, 1875; Reeder, pp. 283, 287)

April 27, 1875
There is to be an excursion to Lake Point on May 1, 1875; fare is $5.00 for a gentleman and lady, plus $1.30 for each additional lady! (Salt Lake Herald, April 27, 1875)

May 2, 1875
"The Masonic Festival." "A gay and happy concourse of pleasure-seekers assembled at the depot of the Utah Western railroad yesterday morning, and were soon thereafter whirling away behind the iron steed 'Kate Connor," for Lake Point, where they arrived on time, and the diversions, exercises, feasting, etc., began at once. The affair must have been seductively enjoyable, as a member of our staff, who accompanied the fraternity, was still missing from his easy chair in the sanctum when we went to press." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, May 2, 1875)

May 3, 1875
"For the U. W. -- This morning there were at the depot two passenger cars, two box cars and four flat cars, all new, for the Utah Western narrow gauge." (Daily Ogden Junction, May 3, 1875)

May 4, 1875
"The Utah Western Railway yesterday received from the east, two passenger cars, two box cars and four flats." (Salt Lake Herald, May 4, 1875)

May 6, 1875
"New Car""The Utah Western Railroad Company has just imported from the East, a magnificent new passenger car, for use on their road. The car is now at the Utah Central depot, mounted on a flat car, and will probably be placed on the track where it belongs immediately." (Salt Lake Tribune, May 6, 1875)

May 6, 1875
"The Utah Western Railroad Company received the other day three new passenger cars, two box cars and eleven flat cars, and this morning they received another new locomotive." (Deseret Evening News, May 6, 1875)

June 5, 1875
General James A. Garfield arrived in Salt Lake City yesterday morning. A special over the Utah Western left the city at 2:00 p.m., and arrived at Lake Point about 3:30 p.m. The party, which included the General, sailed out on the lake aboard the steamboat "City of Corinne" for about an hour, arriving back at Lake Point at 4:30 p.m. Upon the return, an unnamed lady in the party suggested that the steamboat be renamed the "General Garfield," which charming idea was unanimously agreed to. The railroad's ads show the new name starting with that of June 6th, 1875. (Salt Lake Herald, June 5, 1875)

June 15, 1875
A fatal accident on the U. W., wherein a gravel train hit a steer, several cars, at least, thrown off, and one man caught under the cars and crushed. (Salt Lake Herald, June 16, 1875, "yesterday")

January 3, 1876
The U.W. has opened a new ticket office, 15x25 feet in size, on the southwest corner of the Utah Central depot block. (Utah Evening Mail, Salt Lake City, January 4, 1876, "yesterday")

January 5, 1876
In the City Council last night, the Utah Western petitioned for leave to erect an engine shed, 20 feet x 35 feet, on their property on 4th West between South Temple and First South streets; granted. (Deseret Evening News, January 5, 1876)

March 16, 1876
Grading on the Utah Western has commenced on the new line beyond Halfway House, from which point to the Sand Bar Tunnel, this side of Stockton, is about 14 miles, and the road is to be in operation that far in about three months. (Salt Lake Daily Herald, March 16, 1876)

May 17, 1877
On the Utah Western extension, the grade has been completed to the site of the Tunnel, and half of the necessary ties are on hand, and 13 miles of rail has been ordered, by LeGrand Young, who is now in the East. (Salt Lake Herald, May 17, 1877)

June 6, 1877
Four cars of rails for the Utah Western have arrived. (Salt Lake Herald, June 6, 1877)

June 24, 1877
The 'General Garfield' beached for some weeks, floated yesterday at about four o'clock in the morning. (Salt Lake Herald, June 24, 1877)

July 4, 1877
Tracklaying on the Utah Western will commence in a day or two. Tunnel is about a mile and a half east of Stockton, via the proposed route; geographically, it is almost directly north. (Salt Lake Herald, July 4, 1877)

July 11, 1877
The Utah Western is laying rail on its extension to Stockton. (The Utah County Enquirer, Provo, July 11, 1877)

August 4, 1877
The Utah Western track is laid about four miles beyond the present official terminus, and expect to be at Tooele Station, which is about three miles from Tooele, in about a week; at Stockton a company has been formed to build a two-foot gauge tramway up Dry Canyon, several miles being already built, and to connect at Stockton with the Utah Western, should the U.W. ever get that far. (The Utah County Enquirer, Provo, August 4, 1877)

August 8, 1877
The Utah Western has reached the Tooele station. (The Utah County Enquirer, Provo, August 8, 1877)

August 16, 1877
First appearance of a Utah Western Railway schedule showing service, as of August 18, 1877 and thereafter, to Tooele Station. (Salt Lake Herald, August 16, 1877)

September 9, 1877
A new timetable on Utah Western on and after September 10, 1877 - "The track has been completed to the tunnel a short distance this side of Stockton, and distant from this city about forty miles, which is the present western terminus." (Salt Lake Herald, September 10, 1877)

September 10, 1877
Utah Western tracks completed to "Terminus", the location of the proposed 1,000 foot tunnel through the Stockton gravel bar, 37.24 miles southwest of Salt Lake City. Grading for the line from Half Way House had begun in March 1876 and was completed to "Tunnel" by mid May 1877. (Salt Lake Herald, March 16, 1876; May 17, 1877) Track laying resumed in July 1877 at Half Way House after John W. Young had arranged additional financing for the rails, which were ordered in May by LeGrand Young while he was "in the East". The rails began arriving on June 6. (Salt Lake Herald, May 17, 1877; June 6, 1877; July 4, 1877; Reeder, p. 287)

April 16, 1878
The bondholders took control of the Utah Western. The revenues of the road had failed to pay expenses and the interest on the construction bonds. (Reeder, p. 289)

April 17, 1878
"The Eastern creditors of the Utah Western Railway took possession of the road yesterday." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, April 18, 1878, "yesterday")

May 28, 1879
The Utah Western had some sort of open excursion cars in service. (Salt Lake Herald, May 28, 1879)

June 7, 1879
A wreck yesterday on the Utah Western - four coaches, loaded, were blown from the track while moving; brakeman Lorenzo H. Crockett died of injuries, and conductor Charles Carrington was injured. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, June 7, 1879)

June 11, 1879
Last Friday, the 6th, a train blown over on the Utah Western, and brakeman Lorenzo Crockett later died of injuries received. (The Territorial Enquirer, Provo, June 11, 1899)

January 7, 1880
"The Utah Western does not contemplate many improvements this year, but have ordered a new locomotive, with 44" drivers instead of those with 36" now in use. The line is about 31 miles long, ending about two miles short of Stockton." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, January 7, 1880)

April 6, 1880
"A new locomotive for the Utah Western Railway was received in this city on Monday." Monday was the 5th of April 1880. (Salt Lake Herald, April 6, 1880)

April 20, 1880
An article on "The Bathing Points" contained this: "A few days since the new locomotive for use on the Utah Western railroad was received and a trial has since been made. The engine has been christened the 'Jonathan' in honor of an engineer of that name on the road. The locomotive is of the celebrated Baldwin make and cost over $6,000. It is described as a beauty and is probably the fastest narrow gauge engine in the country, the driving wheels having a diameter of forty-five inches. At the trial trip everything worked to ' perfection and the company are fully satisfied with the locomotive. The trip from Lake Point to this city was made in thirty-seven minutes, and it is the intention of Mr. Riter to give our public quicker transit between Zion and the bathing points than they have hitherto enjoyed. Regular schedule time between Lake Point and Salt Lake City has been one hour and ten minutes, heretofore." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, April 20, 1880)

July 3, 1880
"The Lake", a one-third column on the resorts; "The steamer 'General Garfield' still lies moored to the piles in front of the hotel at Lake Point, and looks rather deserted; but it will shortly be removed to the new wharf now being built for it at a point about midway between Black Rock and Kimball's. Work was commenced on this structure some days ago, and Captain Douris expects to have it completed within three or four weeks." (Salt Lake Herald, July 3, 1880)

September 1, 1880
"Two observation cars, similar to those run to Coney Island, will be put on the Utah Western next year. Each one will accommodate ninety passengers." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, September 1, 1880)

October 13, 1880
"The sale of the Utah Western Railroad takes place to-day." Purchasers will extend it immediately, or so says the paper. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, October 13, 1880)

November 3, 1880
Utah Western sold under foreclosure on August 2 by order of the Third District Court, resulting from a suit brought by the bondholders. Purchased by Theodore S. Bassett, who took possession on April 2, 1881. Bassett deeded the Utah Western to the new Utah & Nevada on April 30th, 1881. (OSL corporate history)

W. W. Riter bought the Utah Western on November 3, 1880, as a agent for Theodore Bassett, who held the bonds of the Utah Western. (Salt Lake Herald, February 17, 1881)

November 3, 1880
"Sale of Utah Western Railway" yesterday, for $36,000; new name will likely be Utah & Nevada Railway Company. (Salt Lake Herald, November 4, 1880, "yesterday")

(Reeder, p. 289, says that the sale took place on the October 14, 1880. The Salt Lake Daily Tribune of October 13, 1880 says sale will be "today". Later research has shown that the sale was delayed for two weeks by the Salt Lake County Sheriff.)

February 15, 1881
Utah & Nevada Railway organized to take over the property of the Utah Western, which had been sold in foreclosure on November 18, 1880. (Reeder, p. 290) The Utah & Nevada intended to extend the road south to Tanner's Springs, 87 miles from Salt Lake City. They were unable to complete the new line. (OSL corporate history)

April 1, 1881
"Territorial News" column notes that the [Deseret News] has recently had an article on the re-organization of the Utah Western as the Utah and Nevada, its plans, and so forth. (The Logan Leader, April 1, 1881)

July 1, 1881
Utah & Nevada operations began on July 1, 1881. (Poor's, 1882, p. 858)

Utah Western Name Used Again

The Utah Western name was used again, just eight years later:

June 25, 1889
Articles of Incorporation for the Utah Western Railway Company were filed yesterday, term 50 years, capital stock $600,000, in 6,000 shares. (Salt Lake Herald, June 25, 1889)

(Read more about the later Utah Western Railway of 1889-1890)

Locomotives

Utah Western Locomotives -- A roster listing of Utah Western locomotives.

More Information

Utah Western Railway corporate information -- Information about the Utah Western Railway corporate organization

Clarence Reader's research -- Information about Utah Western Railway from Clarence Reeder's 1970 manuscript

Salt Lake, Sevier Valley & Pioche Railway corporate information

Utah & Nevada Railway (1881-1889) -- Information about the railroad that purchased the Utah Western.

Utah Western entry from George W. Hilton's American Narrow Gauge Railroads (Stanford University Press, 1990)

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