Union Pacific In Utah, 1900-1996
This page was last updated on June 24, 2020.
By 1900 E. H. Harriman had "absolute control" of Union Pacific. He had been involved in the reorganization, was a director of the new corporation and had gradually increased his holdings until he took control. (Trottman p. 274)
January 27, 1900
Deed filed at Coalville last Saturday, by Union Pacific's attorney. It bears the date of December 30, 1899 and conveys the entire property of the Echo & Park City Railway Company to the Union Pacific, in consideration of the canceling of $480,000 in E&PC mortgage bonds. (Park Record, Park City, January 27, 1900)
March 18, 1900
Pullman has bought the S.P. interest in the sleepers, and will buy the U. P. interest as well. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, March 18, 1900)
June 2, 1900
"Death of S. H. H. Clark" at Asheville, North Carolina, on June 1, 1900. He was in his 68th year, and had been ailing for several years. Began with the Union Pacific in 1867, and retired in 1898; was the president thereof, 1890 - 1898. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, June 2, 1900)
June 25, 1900
J. H. McConnell, Union Pacific's Superintendent of Motive Power and Machinery, retired this past week. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, June 25, 1900)
The famous Thousand Mile Tree in Weber canyon had died and was cut down. (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, September 16, 1900)
By the end of 1901 Union Pacific had purchased 45 percent of Southern Pacific stock, giving it control of the SP. (Trottman p. 281)
November 23, 1901
At Park City: "The Union Pacific depot and freight house has been treated to a coat of red, red paint, and looks like a new building. Real passenger service may be one of the possibilities over this branch." (Park Record, Park City, November 23, 1901)
June 24, 1905
Union Pacific's depot at Uintah was destroyed by fire "on the 24th." (Emery County Progress, July 1, 1905)
Union Portland Cement announced that it would build a plant at Croydon. (Salt Lake Mining Review, March 15, 1906, p. 30) Production began in June 1907. (Salt Lake Mining Review, June 30, 1907, p. 31) (Croydon was called Devil's Slide by the Union Pacific)
UP began laying rail on the Sand Ridge Cutoff, west of Ogden. (Ogden Standard, April 10, 1906, "last week")
July 22, 1908
"The Union Pacific Railroad Company is installing a nine-lever mechanical interlocking plant at the crossing of the Salt Lake and Ogden Railway and Union Pacific Railroad, one mile east of Ogden. The plant will be placed in service July 22d, on which date the Salt Lake and Ogden Railway commences running trains over the crossing." (The Signal Engineer magazine, July 1908, page 45, Google Books)
May 6, 1909
The Twenty-fourth Street viaduct in Ogden was completed and ownership was turned over to the city on Wednesday May 6, 1909. (Salt Lake Herald, May 5, 1909)
September 9, 1909
Edward H. Harriman died. (see also Trottman, p. 362) On Sunday September 12, 1909, at the same time as Mr. Harriman's funeral in Arden, New York, all trains on the Harriman system of railroads were stopped for one minute in his honor. (Deseret News, September 10, 1909)
February 18, 1908
Federal government sued Union Pacific to break up the "combination" with Southern Pacific, because it was in restraint of competitive trade and commerce. (Trottman, p. 358)
Hearings for the break-up of Union Pacific and SP ended. (Trottman, p. 362)
June 24, 1910
The station known as "Union Stock Yards Junction" was changed to "St. Joseph." The location was at today's Center Street in North Salt Lake. (from an OSL ICC valuation map, UDOT drawing H-001)
In 1911 the Circuit Court decided in favor of UP/SP, the government appealed the case to the U. S. Supreme Court, which found in favor of the government on December 2, 1912. The Supreme Court agreed to have Union Pacific submit a plan of dissolution to the Circuit Court, by July 1, 1913, that the railroad would dissolve its interest in SP within twenty days of that date. (Trottman, pp. 368, 369)
January 2, 1911
A new all-brick Union Depot was opened at Provo, Utah; to be used by D&RG and UP. (Salt Lake Herald, December 23, 1910)
February 1, 1913
The U. S. Supreme Court ordered Union Pacific to divest its control of Southern Pacific.
D&RG and UP both announce that they will build into the Uinta Basin; D&RG from Soldiers Summit, UP from Park City Branch. (The Sun, October 15, 1915)
Union Pacific will build a line into the Uinta Basin. (Coal Index: News-Advocate, December 3, 1915) Confirmed by R. S. Lovett. Work to start in spring. (Coal Index: News-Advocate, December 24, 1915)
Union Pacific completed construction of the second track between Emory and Wahsatch, in Echo Canyon. The new line was used for eastbound trains and has a ruling grade of 1.14 percent, compared to 1.77 percent for the original, now westbound, line. The curves of the new line are 3 degrees and the old line has curves of 6 degrees. (Engineering News, October 16, 1916, Volume 76, Number 15, pages 700-701)
Union Pacific completed construction of the second track between Riverdale and Gateway, used for eastbound traffic. (source not recorded)
March 21, 1918
The United States Railway Administration (USRA) took over the operation of America’s railroads (including UP and its OSL, OWRR&N and LA&SL subsidiaries) on March 21, 1918 to improve the efficiency of America’s railroads during World War I. It continued to operate and “administer” the railroads until March 1, 1920. One review has stated that over 100,000 freight cars and over 1,900 steam locomotives were built for the USRA, at a cost to the government of $380 million.
Union Pacific completed construction of the two-mile Weber Mine Spur from Coalville to the Weber Mine of the Weber Coal Company, which is a subsidiary of the Ontario Silver Mining Company. The work was started in October 1917 and was done by Christensen Construction Company. (Salt Lake Mining Review, January 30, 1918, p. 40) The mine went into production in March, after pumping out the flooded mine and cleaning out the old drifts. The mine is developed down to 900 feet. (Salt Lake Mining Review, February 15, 1918, p. 44) In May 1919 the coal mines in the Coalville area included the Summit Fuel Company. (Salt Lake Mining Review, May 15, 1919, p. 35)
March 1, 1920
The United States Railway Administration (USRA) returned control of the nation's railroads(including UP and its OSL, OWRR&N and LA&SL subsidiaries), from government control due to World War I, back to the railroad companies. Included in the enabling Esch–Cummins Act was a provision to allow the ICC to control the railroads profits and rate of return for investments.
January 25, 1921
Union Pacific tore down the Provo "Joint Shop Facility" that was shared with Utah Railway. The building was a large two-track steel structure with numerous windows, an interior overhead crane, and large jacks that could raise a locomotive. It was the last remaining structure of the former joint locomotive facility owned by UP and Utah Railway that had included a roundhouse, turntable and coaling station, all built in 1917. The backshop, 75 feet by 240 feet, was built in 1920, with a formal completion date of January 25, 1921. The structure was demolished in August to October 1981.
Columbia Steel received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to construct a subsidiary called the Carbon County Railway. At the same time they withdrew their application to build another subsidiary called the Iron County Railway which was to be constructed from Lund, on the Union Pacific, to their iron ore properties in Iron County. The steel company withdrew their application based on the Union Pacific's protest in which Union Pacific stated that they were intending to construct the Cedar City Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 577)
August 9, 1922
Construction was begun on the LA&SL's Fillmore Branch, to be built between Delta and Fillmore. The work was being done by Utah Construction Company, and was expected to be completed within sixty days. (Millard County Progress, August 11, 1922, "last Wednesday")
October 6, 1922
The Fillmore Branch was not yet completed during the first week of October 1922, with tracklaying progressing. Railroad officials had promised completion in time for the sugar beet harvest, which was to begin on October 15th. (Millard County Progress, October 6, 1922)
February 6, 1923
ICC authorized SP control of CP, including provisions of previous agreement for preferential treatment with UP through Ogden.
This was the start of the Ogden gateway case because it allowed (forced) SP to solicit traffic for interchange with UP at Ogden that originated on SP north of Santa Margarita and Caliente, California, and south of Kirk, Oregon. This was essentially the same lines of separation line as an earlier internal agreement between UP and SP under Harriman control that decided which gateway would be used, Ogden for UP traffic or El Paso for SP traffic.
February 27, 1923
UP management in New York City approved the construction of what was called the Ontario Branch Extension. According to the accompanying documentation for the authorization, the branch was built to secure a greater portion of the ore traffic (about 65,000 tons per year) from Park City mines that used the Ontario Drain Tunnel. Most of the traffic was going by way of the D&RGW. (Union Pacific AFE 19, approved February 27, 1923)
- About 65,000 tons annually shipped over the new branch
- During the 10 months June 1925 to the end of March 1926, there were 99 cars received inbound, and 1,953 cars shipped out.
- During 1922, 68,431 tons of ore was shipped out of Park City, 60,571 (88 percent) by D&RGW, and 7,860 tons (12 percent) by UP.
May 3, 1923
A formal "Golden Spike" ceremony was held in Fillmore to mark the completion of the Fillmore Branch. The ceremony was held at the Fillmore depot at 9:30am on May 3rd. The ceremonial last spike was driven by Utah Governor C. R. Mabey. (Millard County Progress, May 3, 1923; May 11, 1923, with list of official attendees and details of the three-day event)
March 29, 1923
Union Pacific Railroad organized Utah Parks Company as a subsidiary of the railroad. The company was incorporated in Utah. A separate organization was needed to satisfy the concerns of National Park Service that a railroad would not have a monopoly over both transportation services and lodging services in national parks.
July 10, 1925
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to discontinue passenger trains 223 and 224 between Echo and Coalville. The Park City mixed train was 225 and 226. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 799)
Union Pacific awarded the contract for construction of grade for second track between Gateway and Echo to Utah Construction Company. (Salt Lake Mining Review, November 30, 1925, p. 15)
New depot was completed at Morgan, Utah.
March 11, 1926
Union Pacific changed the crew districts in Wyoming and Utah. Freight and passenger trains would operate between Green River, Wyoming, and Ogden, Utah, without changing crews at Evanston, Wyoming, effective at midnight on Thursday March 11, 1926. As a result of the change, 150 families were set to move from Evanston to Ogden. "Further changes affecting Evanston are anticipated when the double-tracking between Gateway and Echo is completed this summer. This change will cut the running time between Ogden and Green River during the summer and fall months when thousands of cars of perishable goods are shipped to eastern markets from coast points. More than 85,000 cars were handled last season, and this number is expected to be increased to 100,000 in 1926. Local Pacific Fruit Express officials say that in the future shipments will save between 30 and 45 minutes in operating time." (Ogden Standard Examiner, March 12, 1926)
November 10, 1926
"Roundhouse Plans Expected Soon. Ogden, Nov. 10. Blueprints of the proposed Union Pacific system roundhouse here are expected to arrive soon, according to word received by Ogden contractors Tuesday from Omaha. Until the plans arrive there is no definite information concerning the new building. The Union Pacific has opened its shops in Evanston, Wyo. They have been closed since last spring." (Salt Lake Telegram, November 10, 1926)
Union Pacific's Utah Parks Company began operating the facilities at Grand Canyon National Park, and took over the interests of Utah & Grand Canyon Transportation Company, the bus company that was operating the bus service between Union Pacific's passenger trains at Cedar City and Cedar Breaks National Monument, Bryce Canyon National Monument, Zion's Canyon National Park, and Grand Canyon National Park. The bus company had begun the service in 1923. (Poor's, 1929, p. 1052)
(Union Pacific changed the name of the bus company to Union Pacific Stages.)
June 30, 1927
New roundhouse in Ogden. The following comes from the June 30, 1927 Ogden Standard Examiner newspaper:
Union Pacific Forming Crews. Hires Several Men From Force Displaced In S. P. Shops. Organization of Union Pacific roundhouse and machine shop crews was started this morning by William Parry, terminal general foreman, who announced that 64 men will be employed in these portions of the railroad's new Ogden activities. Twenty-five of the employees are being shifted from the Southern Pacific shops, others coming largely from Evanston, Wyo.
Besides the roundhouse and machine shop forces, divided into three shifts, there will be the employees of the storehouse, making a total of considerably over 125 men, according to present indications. At the present time nearly 100 men are employed in completing the building and grading work at the roundhouse grounds.
Although coaling of Union Pacific locomotives was started to some extent today at the new yards, the official change of machine and roundhouse work will not take place until midnight. Then 114 employees of the Southern Pacific railroad, including many experienced men, will lose their positions as far as the Southern Pacific shops are concerned. The expectation is that some of these will be re-employed here as business increases while others may seek positions in shops elsewhere.
The coaling station at Carp, Nevada, was demolished in 1928. (Walter R. Averett, Through The Rainbow Canyon, page 53, with photo)
Union Pacific completed the relocation of its Park City and Grass Creek branches, making way for the new Echo dam and reservoir. The dam itself was completed to within 42 feet of its final height. (Morgan County News, January 23, 1930)
State Road Commission replaced the wooden 30th Street bridge in Ogden with a concrete overhead viaduct. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1176)
June 2, 1931
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Keetley on the Ontario Branch east of Park City. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1210)
December 7, 1932
Union Pacific applied to the federal Interstate Commerce Commission to abandon its Grass Creek Branch in Summit County, Utah. The application was denied.
December 29, 1932
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Peterson. The freight house is to remain in place, but locked. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1264)
March 16, 1935
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Uintah. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1716)
The State Road Commission began construction of a concrete subway for State Street under the Union Pacific and D&RGW tracks near Midvale. The construction included a gantlet (interleaved and parallel, but not connected) track for the D&RGW Little Cottonwood Branch to share the new bridge but not the actual rails, with Union Pacific's Provo Subdivision main line. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1725, approved March 25, 1935)
(From here on, after UP's lease of OSL for operation, this chronological history includes all references to events and actions on Oregon Short Line Railroad tracks and locations in Utah.)
(From here on, after UP's lease of LA&SL for operation, this chronological history includes all references to events and actions on Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad tracks and locations in Utah.)
January 1, 1936
Union Pacific leased Los Angeles & Salt Lake, Oregon Short Line, and Oregon-Washington Railway & Navigation for operation. ("Union Pacific Unification", ICC Finance Docket 9422, dated July 26, 1935, in 207 ICC 543.)
"Lease Of Properties Of Subsidiary Railroad Companies — For many years the properties of the Union Pacific Railroad Company and those of the Oregon Short Line Railroad Company, Oregon-Washington Railroad & Navigation Company, Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad Company and The St. Joseph and Grand Island Railway Company have been operated under one control and management but the operations of the properties of each company were for its account and it was necessary to keep accounts and statistics and make separate reports to regulatory commissions and others for each company. Effective January 1, 1936, the properties of the other companies were leased to and are being operated by the Union Pacific Railroad This made possible the centralization at Omaha of all accounting and treasury work in connection with the railroad operations and the discontinuance of the separate Accounting and Treasury Departments which had been maintained by the lessor companies at Salt Lake City, Portland, Los Angeles and St. Joseph, with a resultant saving in expense (after the first year) estimated at $472,000 annually." (Union Pacific Annual Report for 1936)
The State Road Commission began construction of a concrete overpass bridge for the Garfield-Saltair Highway over the tracks of LA&SL and WP. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1895, approved December 22, 1936)
October 7, 1937
LA&SL completed removal of the seven-mile Newhouse Extension, Mile Post 16.5 (Frisco) to Mile Post 23.5 (Newhouse, end of branch) of the Frisco Branch. The removal was done under Work Order 934. The Newhouse Extension had been completed in September 1904 to connect with Samuel Newhouse's Newhouse Mines & Smelting mill railroad, the Newhouse, Copper Gulch & Sevier Lake Railroad, which shut down in 1927.
The Newhouse Extension was an extension of the Frisco Branch. Regular service on the Frisco Branch had ended in 1931 with the shutdown of the old Horn Silver mine by the Tintic Lead Company, which had bought the property in 1928. The Newhouse Extension was washed out in several places during 1934 and 1935. Passenger service to Newhouse had ended in 1928.
In 1937 Union Pacific's depot was the only structure remaining in Newhouse and at Frisco there was only the railroad's depot and two houses. Work on removal of the Newhouse Extension was begun on September 10, 1937.
The railroad had applied to abandon the entire Frisco Branch, along with the Newhouse Extension. But the ICC imposed a two year test period, at the suggestion of the Utah State Industrial Development Board, to allow development of potential mine traffic, from Frisco to Milford. (Abandonment approved by the ICC in Finance Docket 10623, effective May 22, 1937, in 221 ICC 309)
December 14, 1937
Union Pacific completed removal of 2.78-mile Northern Spy Extension, Mile Post 2.65 to Mile Post 5.43 of the Silver City Branch. Retired October 25, 1937. (Work Orders 946 and 1059)
In a 1938 listing of telegraphers on Union Pacific, there was shown to be three locations in Utah with "towermen" assigned to them:
- 900 South in Salt Lake City, where UP's passenger main crossed both D&RGW's passenger main and its freight main
- 500 North in Salt Lake City (reason for tower is not known, as no tracks crossed UP's tracks at that location)
- Ironton, in Utah County where UP's spur to the iron mill crossed the mainline of Salt Lake & Utah Railroad
- (email from Bob Colquitt to The Streamliner discussion group, February 1, 2000)
Union Pacific (OSL) retired its buildings and facilities at Roy, Utah, between Salt Lake City and Ogden. (UP 1938 annual report)
April 1, 1938
Union Pacific (OSL) received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Portage, at Mile Post 36.73 on the Malad Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2024)
August 21, 1938
"Refrigerator Traffic" "Pacific Fruit Express reports about 300 refrigerator cars of fruit moving into Ogden on the Southern Pacific daily. This figure, 10 per cent above the similar period last year, is expected to continue into the last of September, when it will increase to around 500 per day." "At present, about 50 of the daily 300 are grapes. Idaho potatoes make up 100 cars, and onions, green peas, and other products bring the Idaho movements to 135 cars daily." (Ogden Standard Examiner, August 21, 1938)
September 28, 1938
"Fruit Traffic Running High" "California Sending Large Amounts Eastward Through Ogden" "California fruit and vegetable shipments through Ogden are near their seasonal peak -- 400 to 500 carloads each day -- said the Pacific Fruit Express Co. today." "About half the movement consists of grapes, which are moving from California in huge quantities." "In addition, about 200 carloads of potatoes and apples are being shipped from Idaho each day." "Very few refrigerator cars are iced at Ogden at present, said officials. Most of the cars are iced before loading, with one re-icing either at Kansas City or Council Bluffs." (Ogden Standard Examiner, September 28, 1938)
September 30, 1938
Union Pacific (LA&SL) completed removal of 6.56-mile portion of Fairfield Branch, from Mile Post 23.6 (Five Mile Pass) to Mile Post 30.16 (Topliff, end of branch), including 7.03 miles of spur tracks extending from Topliff, southeasterly to the limestone quarries of American Smelting & Refining Company and United States Smelting, Refining & Mining Company.
The limestone quarries had been opened in 1906 and their operation was abandoned in November 1937. (ICC Finance Docket 11983, 228 ICC 223, approved June 3, 1938; removal date from "Return to Questionnaire" for ICC Finance Docket 13762)
August 1, 1939
Union Pacific applied to the federal Interstate Commerce Commission to abandon the Grass Creek Branch in Summit County, Utah. The application was denied. (ICC Finance Docket 12140; denied on August 1, 1939 for lack of jurisdiction; 233 ICC 639-640)
June 15, 1940
Union Pacific applied to the Utah Public Service Commission to abandon the Grass Creek Branch in Summit County, Utah. The application was approved. (Utah PSC Case 2381, Union Pacific Railroad, Grass Creek Spur; Approved June 15, 1940)
September 6, 1940
Union Pacific, LA&SL, and D&RGW received federal ICC approval for UP to access the Spanish Fork sugar factory of the Utah-Idaho-Sugar company. The ICC approved an agreement dated October 11, 1939 and signed by the railroads and the sugar company, and would allow Union Pacific trackage rights over the following: (1) after leaving its own Provo Subdivision mainline, approximately 1.038 miles over the sugar company's private Lake Shore Spur to its connection and crossing of the D&RGW Tintic Branch; (2) approximately 0.345 mile over the D&RGW Tintic Branch; (3) approximately 1.593 miles of D&RGW sidings and spurs from its Tintic Branch to the sugar factory, including an additional 0.505 mile over the Salt Lake & Utah spur that served the sugar factory. D&RGW and Salt Lake & Utah had jointly served the sugar factory under an agreement signed on October 1, 1918. Construction was to begin by November 1, 1940, and be completed by March 1, 1941. (242 ICC 55; ICC Finance Docket 12812, decided September 6, 1940)
Although the USGS topographic map for Spanish Fork in 1948 shows a connection, research suggests the connection between UP and D&RGW, by way of the private Utah-Idaho Lake Shore Spur was never completed. Mark Hemphill wrote on June 2, 2019, reporting that "the 1951 edition of D&RGW General Traffic Circular 36-E, which shows who served each industry at each competitive point, shows Utah-Idaho Sugar at Spanish Fork as Rio Grande track served by Rio Grande only -- not a reciprocal switch and not with UP access."
January 10-11, 1941
The wooden coaling station at Echo burned and was completely destroyed. It was replaced in March 1941 by a new concrete and steel design by Fairbanks-Morse & Company.
April 2, 1941
Union Pacific completed removal of the 5.75-mile Grass Creek Branch. (Work Order 8737; Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2381, approved June 15, 1940)
June 28, 1941
OSL received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Hyrum, on the Cache Valley Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2478)
March 15, 1942
The joint depot at Mammoth, Utah, was destroyed by fire. The depot measured 20 feet by 76 feet. (LA&SL Work Order 2272; Retire Mammoth depot; Work order closed on October 22, 1942)
On March 15, 1942 the Mammoth depot building was completely destroyed by fire. In the insurance claim documents, the superintendent stated that the fire had likely been caused by children playing around the unmanned structure, and that it would be replaced. However, on November 7th, the 20 feet by 76 feet building, or rather what was left of it, was formally retired. Prior to 1933, the depot building had been used as the location of a joint agency station for both D&RGW and LA&SL. In October 1933, LA&SL removed its agent, who had been serving as the joint agent for both D&RGW and LA&SL. After 1933, the agent at Eureka was responsible for car orders and the paper work associated with car shipments.
In May 1942, Union Pacific retired and removed the western 1.15-mile portion of the Evona Branch, between the connection with the OSL main line (branch Mile Post 3.77), and the crossing with the Roy-Hot Springs Road (Highway 91), branch Mile Post 2.62. (Work Order 89) The Evona Branch was built as the original Utah Central main line in 1869 and became a secondary main line in 1906 after OSL completed its six-mile Sand Ridge Cut Off into Ogden. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2544, approved March 30, 1944)
The portion of the branch to be abandoned had only been used for the storage of cars since 1912 when OSL completed the second track on the new main line. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2544) In July 1930 the state began improving Highway 91 by building a new "modern" concrete bridge over the 1906/1912 built OSL main line. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 1176)
(Abandonment for the portion of the Evona Branch west of the highway crossing was requested because the state wanted to pave the entire route of Highway 91 between Roy and Hot Springs and Union Pacific did not want to pay for a highway crossing for the branch.)
June 30, 1942
LA&SL received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Sandy. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2593)
July 21, 1942
OSL received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Farmington. The last business for the agency had been to accept materials for the construction of the Mountain States Telephone & Telegraph transcontinental cable. Woods Cross is the next station to the south and Kaysville is the next station to the north. Approval to remove the Farmington depot building was given on July 26, 1948. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2599)
Ogden Union Railway & Depot expanded the Ogden East Yard, also called Speedway or Riverdale Yard. On August 5, the Utah Public Utilities Commission approved OUR&D's request to add two tracks to the 33rd Street crossing as part of the expansion, which included construction of the car repair track. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2608)
In 1942, OUR&D built its new East Yard, which later became known as Riverdale Yard. The yard was greatly expanded in 1954.
September 11, 1942
Interstate Commerce Commission dismissed, rather than postponed, LA&SL's application to abandon the Fillmore Branch. The railroad had made application based on projected losses from wartime restrictions on petroleum products and to provide relay rail and other scrap materials for the war effort. The branch was not being operated at a loss. The application was denied because of protests of shippers. Union Pacific had requested an indefinite postponement due to new traffic of crushed volcanic stone, as cinder ash, for use on manufacture of cinder block needed in the war effort. (ICC Finance Docket 13771)
September 11, 1942
ICC dismissed LA&SL's application to abandon the Fairfield Branch, from Mile Post 0.8 (Cutler) to Mile Post 23.6 (Five Mile Pass, end of branch). The application was made on May 23, 1942. (ICC Finance Docket 13762)
On August 24, 1942 Union Pacific withdrew the application because new traffic developed which required that the branch remain in service. The operation of the new Geneva Steel plant at Orem required a special type of clay for use in the mortar of the fire bricking in the blast furnaces. The closest source for the clay was in a quarry which was located on the Union Pacific's Fairfield Branch. The clay was required in quantities that could not be furnished by trucks from the quarry. (Minutes of ICC hearing, Salt Lake City, August 24, 1942)
In November 1942 Union Pacific was operating two trains per week over the Fairfield Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2631)
OSL retired and removed the western 2.9-mile portion of the Benson Branch from Mile Post 0 at Ballard Junction on the Cache Valley Branch, to Mile Post 2.9 at Benson. (OSL work order 428; Abandonment approved by the ICC on October 26, 1942, Financial Docket 13927, 254 ICC 810) The 8.17-mile Benson Branch was completed in October 1912, between Ballard Junction (Mile Post 3.53 on the Cache Valley Branch) and Benson Junction, in Logan, as a direct route (11.7 miles) for through traffic between Cache Junction and Logan, by-passing the Cache Valley Branch (15.3 miles) and the Wellsville Branch (23.9 miles). The branch was used seasonally for 90 days each year for the movement of sugar beets to the Logan sugar factory. The Logan sugar factory operated until 1926 and was dismantled in 1936. In the twenty-five years that the sugar factory was in operation, from 1901 to 1926, it processed 1.5 million tons of beets and produced 3.5 million hundred pound bags of sugar; in its peak year of 1920 the factory processed 100,000 tons of sugar beets. (Arrington: Eccles, p. 243)
OSL retired and removed about a half-mile of track at the end of the Bear River Branch, from Mile Post 9.9 to Mile Post 10.6, at Bear River City. (OSL work order 439) The remaining portion of the branch was in service at least until 1951. The branch paralleled U. S. Highway 30, between Bear River City and Tremonton, from about Mile Post 3 to about Mile Post 7.
OSL retired and removed the 1.24-mile portion of the Thatcher Branch from Thatcher at Mile Post 6.25 to Nelson at Mile Post 7.3. (OSL work order 461) The 7.3-mile Thatcher Branch was built in 1903 for the Utah Idaho Sugar Company to transport sugar beets from the region west of Tremonton to the sugar company's sugar factory at Garland. OSL purchased the line in 1922. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2621, approved October 19, 1942)
August 28, 1943
LA&SL completed removal of 15.29 miles of the Frisco Branch, from Mile Post 1.21 to Mile Post 16.5 (Frisco, end of track). The branch was retired on June 22, 1943, after abandonment was approved by the ICC on July 24, 1942. (Work order 2528; ICC Finance Docket 13611, effective September 24, 1942)
The federal ICC had approved the abandonment of the Frisco Branch on July 24, 1942. (252 ICC 803, Finance Docket 13611; Decided July 24, 1942, "Cases Disposed Of Without Printed Report")
October 8, 1943
Union Pacific issued Work Order and Authority For Expenditure to build a spur 194 feet long, and an engine house (16 feet by 60 feet) at Iron Mountain, Utah. The engine house was specifically needed to protect a recently assigned diesel switcher, which was to be used to switch rail cars at the three nearby iron ore mine plants. The project was funded by UP's own special "National Defense Project," which was funding set aside by the railroad specifically to support the war effort. There were three mining plants loading iron ore, and a diesel switcher was needed to expedite the timely movement of trains. The engine house was to be constructed with a wooden frame, covered with corrugated steel, and was to be equipped with an inspection and service pit, and necessary heat, water and lights. About 200 cars per day of iron ore was being moved to the Columbia Steel plant at Geneva, Utah, and to the Colorado Fuel & iron plant at Pueblo, Colorado. The use of a diesel switcher would be more efficient and economical than the use a steam locomotive with its associated coaling and water facilities. (Union Pacific internal communications dated October 8 and 21, 1943)
Union Pacific built a new powerhouse at the Salt Lake shops. The new brick and concrete structure replaced an earlier powerhouse built in 1918. The new powerhouse used three large water-tube boilers to produce all of the steam needed for UP's entire Salt Lake City terminal. (The powerhouse was torn down in 1999, after UP closed the shops in 1998.)
February 11, 1944
The construction of the Grant Tower automatic interlocking in Salt Lake City was approved by D&RGW. The documentation to support the project shows that there was a 17-lever mechanical interlocking at the combined WP/D&RGW and LA&SL/D&RGW crossing along 700 West and South Temple streets. The formal completion date for the line change was December 20, 1952, and for the tower building itself, the formal completion date is shown as May 20, 1950. (D&RGW AFE records on file at Colorado Railroad Museum)
March 16, 1945
Union Pacific, in the name of Oregon Short Line, leased, with right to purchase, all of the trackage, facilities, and right of way of Southern Pacific's line from Corinne Junction to Corinne. OSL purchased the property, buildings and tracks on October 16, 1947. Southern Pacific had removed their remaining tracks from Corinne Junction to Ogden in 1942, except for a 962 foot stub at Corinne Junction, which they sold to Utah Idaho Sugar Co., for use as a beet loading station. OSL bought the spur from the sugar company on April 21, 1950. (Union Pacific engineering department records)
SP had been running their Promontory Branch trains over OSL between Ogden and Corinne since about 1903. In an unsuccessful 1936 request for abandonment of the Promontory Branch SP stated that most of their trackage between those two points was "gone, removed by parties unknown". (ICC Finance Docket 9791, 212 ICC 402)
OSL retired and removed the 1.03-mile portion of the Evona Branch between the western end at Mile Post 2.62 (the end of the branch at the Roy-Hot Springs highway, U. S. 91) and the spur to the Ogden sugar factory, at Mile Post 1.59. (Work Order 1332)
(The remaining portion of the branch is still in service during 2003, serving the Farmer's Co-op and the former Pillsbury grain elevators.)
OSL retired and removed a portion of the Thatcher Branch, from Mile Post 5.63 to Mile Post 6.25, at Thatcher. (Work order 1429) The siding for Thatcher was moved to the new end of track in November.
October 13, 1945
"The Union Pacific will receive from Fairbanks, Morse & Co., on November 1 a three-unit, 6,000-hp. Diesel-electric locomotive, which has been designed for a maximum operation of 65 m.p.h. This locomotive will be tested on a run from south of Salt Lake City, Utah, to Los Angeles, Cal., in freight hauling and possibly in passenger service. The Union Pacific will also receive a four-unit, 6,000-hp. Diesel-electric locomotive from the Electro-Motive division of the General Motors Corporation, which is to be tested between Green River, Wyo., and Ogden, Utah, under exact loads and conditions to determine comparison of performance of this unit with the Union Pacific's "Big Boys," or 4000 class, 4-8-8-4 type, locomotives. Later tests of the new locomotive will also be conducted between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles." (Railway Age, October 13, 1945, page 622)
February 28, 1946
UP retired and removed the 86-feet by 33 feet, double track engine house at Malad, Idaho, at the north end of the Malad Branch. The engine house was located just south of the wye tracks at Malad, on the west side of the tracks. A total of 200 feet of track in and near the engine house were retired and removed at the same time. (UP CE Drawing 1504, dated February 28, 1946)
Union Pacific completed its new dispatcher's office in Salt Lake City. The all-brick building was located at the southwest corner of North Temple and 3rd West (400 West). (Sanborn Fire Insurance Map, Salt Lake City, 1950, sheet 052)
June 3, 1947
Union Pacific's first diesel-powered freight train to operate between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles, departed Salt Lake City on the morning of Tuesday June 3, 1947. A second diesel-powered freight was scheduled to depart Salt Lake City in the afternoon of the same day. There were already 14 diesel switching locomotives assigned to Salt Lake City and vicinity, and UP had ordered 13 additional switching locomotives for the same service. (Deseret News, June 3, 1947, with photo of UP 1401A)
August 26, 1947
The first depot at Uintah, a Common Standard design, was burned on the morning of August 26, 1947. (Ogden Standard Examiner, August 26, 1947)
November 3, 1947
OSL received ICC approval to abandon the 2.98-mile College Branch, between College Junction, on the Cache Valley Branch south of Logan, to College. The line had originally been constructed in 1873 as the main line of the narrow-gauge Utah Northern Railway between Ogden and Franklin, Idaho. It became the Cache Valley Branch in 1890, upon construction of a new standard-gauge line between Ogden and Pocatello, and in 1906 the line became a secondary line, with the completion of the Wellsville Loop through Wellsville and Hyrum, further south in the Cache Valley. The 2.78-mile western portion of the College Branch between Mendon and College was abandoned in 1932. In 1945 the only traffic on the College Branch had been 23 carloads of beets and four carloads of potatoes. In 1946 there had only been 25 carloads of beets. (ICC Financial Docket 15790, in 267 ICC 640)
By October 1948, Union Pacific had sold all of the property between the junction and College. (Cache County Recorder's office)
November 14, 1947
OSL took possession of the 1.55-mile portion of the SP Promontory Branch (originally the 1869 Central Pacific main line) between Corinne Junction and Corinne. Union Pacific had used the line under trackage rights since July 1903 as part of the operations of the Malad Branch. SP had abandoned their Promontory Branch in 1944. (Union Pacific internal communications dated March 14, 1956 and June 26, 1956; Union Pacific Work Order 4902, approved on August 14, 1956, completed on September 20, 1956)
Southern Pacific sold the following structures on the dates shown, but the buildings remained on railroad property:
- Agent's dwelling, shed and fence on November 6, 1942, building remained on railroad right-of-way
- Depot building on December 11, 1942, building remained on railroad right-of-way
- Two bunk houses on December 19, 1942, buildings remained on railroad right-of-way
No property taxes were paid by SP, or the new owners after the "sales" in 1942. After an assessment in 1956 by the Utah State Tax Commission, Union Pacific internal communications indicate that although information from SP specifically referenced "sales" in 1942, additional documents furnished by SP in 1956 indicated leases rather than sales, with the leases (at $10 per year) assigned to UP by SP at the time of the sale of the Corrine properties in 1947. In 1956, UP proposed raising the leases to $25 per month to cover annual property taxes of $276.21 assessed in 1955, but was refused, and after an on-the-ground field inspection by Union Pacific personnel, UP canceled the leases and ordered that any and all buildings be removed from railroad property. These non-railroad-owned buildings included the following: 30 feet by 80 feet passenger and freight depot; 24 feet by 50 feet agent's dwelling; three bunk houses; two tool sheds; two chicken sheds; a cook house; two wood sheds; two scrap bins; five miscellaneous outbuildings; 708 feet of 1-inch water line, and a gasoline storage tank with pump and filler pipe.
Union Pacific installed Centralized Traffic Control between Salt Lake City and Caliente, Nevada. Included was a new building located north of the Salt Lake City passenger depot, to house the communications equipment, and personnel needed to operate the new control system and control the train movements. This building later became the South-Central District train dispatching center. (part from Union Pacific annual reports for 1947 and 1948)
Union Pacific (LA&SL) completed installation of Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) between Salt Lake City and Caliente, Nevada. 329 miles, begun in 1947. (Moody's, 1959 p. 848)
Union Pacific purchased the western end, 1.9 miles in length, of the D&RGW San Pete Valley Branch after it was abandoned in December 1947. The line connected with UP's LA&SL subsidiary at Nephi and served the plaster mill at the mouth of Salt Creek Canyon, east of Nephi. The line became LA&SL's Nephi Plaster Mill Spur. the spur ran down the middle of Nephi's main east-west thoroughfare, First North Street, which was also designated as Utah Highway 132. The spur was retired and removed in October 1953 at the request of the state highway department, which wanted the tracks removed to allow improvements along the state highway.
January 6, 1948
"Union Pacific ran its last regularly scheduled steam locomotive out of Los Angeles Union Station on January 6. It was at the head end of the second section of the Pony Express. UP now uses diesels on all through passenger trains between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City." (Trains magazine, March 1938, page 62)
March 24-26, 1948
The American Freedom Train came to Salt Lake City via Western Pacific. It was displayed at Salt Lake City on March 24th, at Provo on March 25th and at Ogden on March 26th, before going to Pocatello, Idaho, via UP.
The following comes from the online ICC Reports, Standard Time Zone Investigation No. 10122, decided March 31, 1948 (270 ICC 15)
Two important dates come from this ICC report: February 29, 1948, when the railroad was rearranged and division end-points were changed; and April 11, 1948, when new operating agreements went into effect.
The rearranged railroad was covered in the issue of new employee timetables for the entire UPRR and its subsidiaries. These new timetables were compiled into a single book and are still available from Union Pacific Historical Society.
Quoting portions of the ICC report...
[Under an order decided in 1928...] The boundary line between the United States standard Mountain and Pacific time zones was defined so as to run from Salt Lake City, Utah, in a southwesterly direction immediately north of and parallel with the Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad to the boundary line between Utah and Nevada near Uvada, Utah. The effect was to provide Mountain time for all points in Utah on and south of the line referred to. [The Mountain time also was extended along certain lines of the LA&SL from the Utah-Nevada state line to Caliente, Nevada.]
The main line which petitioner would have us except from the Mountain zone extends from the Utah-Nevada State line near Uvada to Salt Lake City, via Tintic, Utah, a distance of 282.8 miles. There is also an alternate route between Lynndyl, Utah, and Salt Lake City via Provo, Utah, used principally for freight, 134.1 miles in length; and there are seven branch lines in Utah aggregating 110.6 miles, a total mileage of 527.5 miles, all of which would be included in the exception. While this is a very substantial mileage to be operated under an operating exception, the zone line actually runs along the main line of petitioner from Salt Lake City to the Utah-Nevada boundary, so that, as to the greater portion of the mileage, the practical effect of the operating exception requested would be to transfer the zone boundary, for operating purposes only, from one side of the main line to the other.
The reasons for the modification sought by the petitioner are, essentially, changes in the flow of its traffic and an improvement and modernization program, including the substitution of Diesel for steam power and the installation of centralized traffic control. The petitioner is comprised of five corporate properties, one of which is the Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad Company. These properties have been and are now operated as three districts [Eastern, Northwestern, South-Central]. Operating divisions were established and restricted to conform to the limits of these corporate properties, but with the continuous development of traffic within and through the West, these district lines and operating divisions have become an impediment to the movement of through traffic. The petition states that to meet this changed situation petitioner has been and now is engaged in a system-wide program of modernizing its facilities and streamlining its operations.
In pursuance of this improvement program, effective February 29, 1948, the portion of petitioner's line between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City was established as a single division [California Division] in lieu of the two previous divisions, one extending from Los Angeles to Caliente, and the other from Caliente to Salt Lake City. To expedite train movements and save time previously lost at terminal points in changing engines, Diesel engines for both passenger and freight trains are now operated through, without change, over the entire distance between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles. Heretofore, between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City, all train and engine crews changed at Caliente, the present time-breaking point. Under the rearrangement, freight-train crews and both passenger- and freight -engine crews will change at Las Vegas, Nev., and at Milford, Utah. Passenger-train crews will operate from Las Vegas all the way into Salt Lake City. Under the operating rearrangements, train and engine crews will run in both directions through Caliente, and will have to change the time of their watches en route unless a change in the operating exception is made.
Petitioner now operates daily in each direction, 7 freight trains and 4 passenger trains, a total of 22 trains, through the present time-break point at Caliente and the zone boundary at the Utah-Nevada State line. The proposed exception will avoid hazards resulting from time changes in the middle of train movements.
After extended negotiations, an agreement covering the proposed changes has been reached by petitioner with its operating employees, under which Caliente and Lynndyl will be eliminated as operating terminals, effective April 11, 1948.
UP Lynndyl Roundhouse -- LA&SL retired and removed the roundhouse at Lynndyl, leaving just two stalls along the east side that were connected to the machine shop. (UP drawing prepared on May 25, 1948, showing 685 feet of track to be constructed as a result of the retirement of yard tracks and various shop ground facilities.)
(Read letters from 1939-1943, concerning proposed retirement of portions of UP's Lynndyl roundhouse.) (PDF; 18 pages; 11.3MB)
OSL retired and removed the entire 4.93-mile Urban Branch, between Bakers (OSL Mile Post 25.3) and Urban. (Work Order 2162) The branch was completed in 1918 and was used to move sugar beets to the Garland sugar factory, on the Malad Branch. Beet dumps were located at Natal, Teal, and Urban.
In the six year period from 1941 to 1946, the traffic on the Urban Branch amounted to only 105, 79, 72, 75, 49, and 36 carloads, respectively, all of which were loaded at the beet dumps at Teal, at Mile Post 2.6, and at the end of the branch at Urban. The only trains on the branch were operated about one per day, for the duration of the thirty day beet harvesting season.
The decline in traffic was attributed to the steady decrease in the number of acres that have been planted in sugar beets in the region east of the Bear River. (Abandonment approved by the ICC in Financial Docket 15740, dated November 3, 1947, in 267 ICC 634) The siding at Bakers, Mile Post 25.6, was retired in 1949 (Work Order 2168), while Bakers Spur, at Mile Post 25.3 on the east side of the main line, was retired in December 1947 (Work Order 2162).
July 28, 1948
Union Pacific received Utah Public Service Commission approval to remove the depot building at Farmington. Approval to close the agency was given on July 21, 1942. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 2599)
August 13, 1948
Union Pacific received Utah Public Service Commission approval to abandon its Weber Mine Spur at Coalville, Utah. The spur had been built in 1917-1918, and was 2.57 miles in length, in a general northeasterly direction from Coalville. Trains had been operating at irregular intervals, and there had been no regularly scheduled trains. The Weber mine was operated by the Park Utah Consolidated Mines Company, and active mining had stopped on May 16, 1944 due to a fire in the underground working areas. The working areas in the mine where the fire had occurred had been sealed off by concrete bulkheads. There was 'considerable" amounts of old "slack" coal located on the surface at the mine, and during 1946 a total of 21 car loads of this slack coal had been shipped. But during 1947, only 12 car loads of slack coal had been shipped. Continued operation over the spur track, and projected traffic on the spur, did not justify the cost to maintain the spur. Any future shipments can be handled by motor truck to a loading site in Coalville, adjacent to the Union Pacific Park City Branch. Revenue from the spur during 1947 had been $1,764.00, and expenses to provide the service had been $2,540.00, for a net loss of $766.00. The application had been submitted on July 10, 1948. (Utah Public Service Commission Case 3292)
Union Pacific completed removal of the 2.6-mile Weber Mine Spur, from Coalville to the Weber Mine in Chalk Creek canyon. (Work Order 6926, UP Drawing 19564, UP Drawing 36268, Park City Branch)
OSL retired and removed the 1.57 portion of the Logan Sugar Factory Branch between Logan Junction and the branch's crossing of the Logan River at Mile Post 0.9. (Work order 2617) Included in the abandonment was the one-mile portion of the original branch, from the river to College Junction, along with the 0. 58-mile portion of the College Branch from Logan Junction to College Junction that remained after the College Branch was removed in November 1947. The remaining 0.9 portion of the Logan Sugar Factory Branch is in service today as the Sugar Factory Spur, from Sugar Factory Junction to the river. (source not recorded)
February 1, 1949
Union Pacific received Utah Public Service Commission approval to discontinue Trains 559 and 560 between Ogden, Utah and Malad, Idaho. The two passenger trains provided service by using two "motor passenger coaches" (McKeen or other motor cars). One motor car was designated as Train 559 northbound, departing Ogden at 8:15 a.m. and arriving Malad at 11:00 a.m. The other motor car was designated as Train 560 southbound and departed Malad at 3:15 p.m. and arriving at Ogden at 5:45 p.m. (Utah Public Service Commission case 3291)
Union Pacific had initially applied to discontinue the two trains during 1941, and the Commission had denied the application on January 23, 1942. Union Pacific appealed the Commission's decision to the Utah Supreme Court, which found in favor of the railroad, reversing the Commission's denial on December 12, 1942. On January 27, 1943, the Commission issued its order allowing Union Pacific to discontinue Trains 559 and 560. But the trains' discontinuance was blocked by the Public Utilities Commission of Idaho due to the war emergency. Following the war, patronage of the two trains had declined considerably. The Utah Supreme Court's denial had been based in part on the lack of parallel motor bus route, but following the war, there were now two parallel bus routes, providing morning and evening service on both directions, on schedules that were faster than the train service. With these considerations, Union Pacific applied to the Public Utilities Commission of Idaho to discontinue the two passenger trains, and the Idaho commission held a hearing on September 21, 1948. The Idaho commission approved the application to discontinue the Idaho portion of the service on December 21, 1948. Union Pacific was allowed to replace the two passenger trains with Mixed Train service, with service for passengers and their baggage, as well as providing express service.
March 28, 1950
Most of the roundhouse and associated tracks at Caliente, Nevada were retired and removed. Also retired and removed were the seven yard tracks that paralleled the main line. This change essentially shut Caliente down as a division point on the LA&SL. A few tracks were trained, including the turntable (126 feet in length), seven turntable tracks, the five southern-most roundhouse stalls and two of the approach tracks to the south of the turntable. the wye tracks north and south remained in place, and were used by the Pioche Branch. (Union Pacific Work Order 4249, approved January 21, 1949; completed March 28, 1950; the associated drawing for the proposed changes was dated November 18, 1948)
April 6, 1950
Union Pacific received Utah Public Service Commission approval "to discontinue its station at Stockton, Utah, as an agency station and reporting station." The building was to remain as a non-agency station. Because labor agreements would not allow one full-time agent to be responsible for two stations, the agent at Bauer could not fulfill the responsibilities of delivery and handling of express or L.C.L. freight at Stockton. Therefore, Union Pacific was "to appoint some responsible person at Stockton to be caretaker at Stockton depot," and the caretaker would be given a key to the Stockton freight house to allow shippers and customers to ship and receive shipments to and from Stockton, and to allow access to the telephone at the Stockton depot. The application had been submitted on August 9, 1949. (Utah Public Service Commission, Case 3436)
- Outbound traffic for 1947 was 148 car loads of ore and one car of wool. Inbound traffic for 1947 was 17 cars of coal and one car load of steel pipe.
- Outbound traffic for 1948 was 88 cars of ore and one car of wool. Inbound traffic for 1948 was 16 car loads of coal and three car loads of lumber.
- Outbound traffic for 1949 was 106 car loads of ore and one car load of wool. Inbound traffic for 1949 was 13 car loads of coal.
- Public notice of the changes were posted at these Stockton businesses: Johnson Cash Store; John Bryan's Service Station; Nando Meli's Pool Hall, and Fred Sheldon's Beer Hall, Grocery and Coal Yard.
December 15, 1950
UP constructed new sanding facilities at Provo, including using an elevated second-hand 6-ton, 6.5 cubic-yard sand tank, and pneumatic piping system to move the dry sand from the drying house at the retired coaling station. This new sand facility remained in place north of the Provo Joint shop building until the late 1970s. (Union Pacific Work Order 4566; approved August 8, 1950; completed December 15, 1950),
Union Pacific completed its new laundry building in Ogden. (Ogden Standard Examiner, July 27, 1952)
Union Pacific constructed what it called the "Post Office Annex" for lease to U. S. government. (Union Pacific 1951 annual report)
Work on the new Postal Annex began in mid January 1951, with completion expected in July 1951. The new one-story building was 125 feet by 224 feet, and was being built by Union Pacific, and would be leased to the U. S. Postal Service. (Deseret News, January 30, 1951)
November 16, 1951
The U.S. Post Office began using its new parcel post sorting facility, located in the Union Pacific-owned Postal Annex building, located just south of UP's Salt Lake City depot. Work began in January 1951 and was completed in time for the Christmas rush. The building measured 125 feet by 225 feet. It was built by Union Pacific and leased to United States Post Office Department upon completion. (Deseret News, January 27, 1951; November 13, 1951; December 12, 1951) The building was occupied by the Post Office Department from November 1951 to November 1975 when the Postal Service opened its new sorting facility on Redwood Road.
Work started on the new Diesel Repair Shop at Salt Lake City. (Railway Age, October 3, 1955, p. 34)
April 11, 1952
The federal ICC approved UP and LA&SL's application to abandon the Fairfield Branch. (ICC Finance Docket 17608; in 282 ICC 811, "Cases Disposed of Without Printed Report")
Utah Division Employee Timetable No. 12, dated April 27, 1952, was the last issue to show the LA&SL (UP) Fairfield Branch between Cutler and Five Mile Pass in Utah County. The branch is *not* shown in timetable No. 13, dated November 9, 1952. (Jim Ehernberger, email dated November 18, 2014)
April 10, 1953
Union Pacific received federal ICC approval to build an industrial lead along 3rd (400) West, south from 9th South, to 21st South, a distance of 1.7 miles. The industrial lead was built to serve several existing and potential businesses and industrial companies that had requested the spur. The industrial lead crossed D&RGW's former Salt Lake & Utah line at about 1550 South, for which D&RGW protested and lost. Operation of the industrial lead was within Salt Lake City terminal limits, and was switched similar to the industries all along 3rd (400) West between 2nd South and 9th South. The line remained in place after the construction of Interstate 15, and the connecting access ramp to 9th South, with the access ramp including an overhead viaduct. The industrial lead was removed in 1999 when UP abandoned the entire line along 400 West as part of the I-15 upgrades, and as part of the gateway Project, but the overhead viaduct for 400 West remains in place. (282 ICC 741; ICC Finance Docket 17480, decided April 10, 1953)
"Completion Seen. -- Salt Lake City. -- The Union Pacific Railroad said yesterday construction of its new $100,000 north yard offices here will be completed by June 1. The 36 by 181-foot brick and reinforced concrete structure will house offices and clerical workers for the terminal master and train master." (Ogden Standard Examiner, January 25, 1953)
(These yard offices in Salt Lake City, located at about 700 North, were demolished in February and March 2019.)
The following comes from Railway Age:
$4 Million Expansion Planned at Ogden, Utah -- "To handle the heavy volume of traffic arising from the national defense effort and the rapidly expanding industrialization of the west," the Union Pacific and the Southern Pacific, through their jointly owned Ogden Union Railway & Depot Co., and Pacific Fruit Express, will spend $4 million on new and enlarged yard facilities at Ogden, Utah.
One of the major features of the project is expansion of the Ogden Union's East yard to permit handling all eastbound traffic. The present main yard will be used for westbound traffic. Plans call for 111,900 feet of new yard trackage; an overhead viaduct for the Bamberger Railroad; an overhead viaduct for highway traffic at 31st street; two yard office buildings; a diesel fueling station; two control towers; floodlights for both East and Main yards; a pneumatic tube system; radio and paging communication facilities; and a 15,0-ton track scale.
Parallel improvements planned by P. F. E. call for construction of an island-type icing platform with a capacity of 220 cars. Of two present island-type icing platforms, one of 70-car capacity will be retired while one of 66-car capacity will be retained for service.
Plans also call for three mechanical icing machines; a public address system; and a 500-ton ice storage facility with an ice conveyor system connecting it with the platform.
At the same time the UP will construct a four-track car repair yard with an auxiliary shop, office, locker room and storehouse building. (Railway Age, July 20, 1953, courtesy of Thorton Waite, photocopied article received on March 26, 2011)
Union Pacific retired and removed the Nephi Plaster Mill Spur. UP had purchased the spur in 1948. The spur served the plaster mill of U. S. Gypsum Company and was the western portion, 1.9 miles in length, of the former D&RGW San Pete Valley Branch, abandoned by D&RGW in December 1947. The spur ran down the middle of Nephi's main east-west thoroughfare, First North Street, which was also designated as Utah Highway 132. The spur was retired and removed in October 1953 at the request of the state highway department, which wanted the tracks removed to allow improvements along the state highway. (Work Order 5272; end of track was at engineering station 108+39)
May 21, 1958
The federal ICC approved UP's request to end operations over the former New East Tintic Railway in the Tintic District, between Mammoth Junction and the Mammoth mine. (ICC Finance Docket 19917, decided May 21, 1958; "Not printed in full in the permanent series of ICC Reports")
"F. D. No. 19917, Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad Company et al. -- Abandonment -- Mammoth Branch. Decided May 21,1958." (295 ICC 832; "Cases Disposed Of Without Printed Report")
Union Pacific began offering trailer-on-flat-car service. The following comes from Model Railroader magazine, May 2016:
Q -- When did the Union Pacific get into the trailer-on-flatcar business?
A -- Though some railroads explored trailer-on-flatcar (TOFC) service as early as the 1920s, federal regulations limited the practice to short lines, short runs, and intra-state service. But an Interstate Commerce Commission ruling in 1954 clarified the legality of intermodal shipping, opening the doors to railroads nationwide. Quick to jump on the bandwagon that year were the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe; Baltimore & Ohio; Chicago & North Western; Great Northern; New York Central; Nickel Plate; Pennsylvania; and Wabash, among others. A year later, in 1955, Norfolk & Western, Pennsylvania, and Rail-Trailer Corp. combined forces to form Trailer Train.
The UP was among those that started experimenting with TOFC fairly early. Union Pacific flatcars outfitted exclusively for handling trailers first appeared in the Official Railway Equipment Register of January 1954. The 43'-3" flats pictured above appeared in the 1956 equipment register.
You could also run Trailer Train cars in interchange service anytime after 1955, though the UP didn't join Trailer Train until 1960.
The entire F-50-10 class in the 53000-53084 series were converted from 56000-series cars in July 1953, November 1953 through June 1954, and in November 1958. The entire F-50-10 class was built as 56000-series cars in September to December 1939.
(Color photos of UP Fruehauf and Trailmobile trailers, including two loaded on UP F-50-10 53008, are on the back cover of The Streamliner, Volume 18, Number 3, Summer 2004)
UP F-50-10 flat car 53019 was converted to TOFC service in December 1953, from its previous number of UP 56794, and is shown in the UP Equipment Record as "test car Pullman-Standard Trailmobile." Pullman-Standard bought control of Trailmobile in 1951, keeping the company as a separate business unit, known as Pullman-Trailmobile, Trailmobile Inc. Division of Pullman, Inc., until 1989.
OSL retired and removed the remaining 5.2-mile portion of the Benson Branch from Benson, at the end of track, to Benson Junction in Logan. (Work order 4203)
(The wye at Benson Junction, along with about 1,000 feet of the branch, remains today as part of the Cache Valley Branch.)
July 16, 1954
UP retired and removed the 65,000-gallon water tank and two 12-inch Poage water standpipes at Farmingtom, Utah. One standpipe, and drain box was located on the north end of the station platform, east of the double track main line, and the second standpipe and drain box was located at the south end of the platform, on the west side of the double tracks. The water tank was located just east of the former site of the Farmington depot. (UP Utah Division CE Drawing 2171, dated July 16, 1954)
"Now that all of its routes are protected by fast, non-extra-fare streamliners, Union Pacific is dropping two familiar names from its timetable -- the Denver-Los Angeles Pony Express, and the Chicago-San Francisco Gold Coast. Incidentally, removal of the Coast will be somewhat simultaneous with the complete streamlining of the San Francisco Overland on the same route for the first time in its 67-year life." (Trains magazine, January 1955, page 12)
August 2, 1955
Union Pacific formally opened the Diesel Locomotive Maintenance and Repair Shop in Salt Lake City. Announced to be built in October 1951. Construction started in December 1951. (July 20, 1955 "72055" Union Pacific news release; Salt Lake Tribune, August 3, 1955, p. 16; Railway Age, October 3, 1955, p. 34)
August 31, 1955
OSL retired the 2.6-mile portion of the Syracuse Branch, from Barnes at Mile Post 2.1 to Syracuse at Mile Post 4.7, including the 1.8-mile West Point Spur that ran north from Steed, at Mile Post 3.2. The siding at Steed had been retired in December 1946. Barnes is the present end of track for the Syracuse Branch. (Work Order notes in Union Pacific's Salt Lake City engineering office, 1982)
September 1, 1955
Freight trains operating on the McCammon (Idaho) to Ogden segment, per UP's September 1, 1955 "Manifest and Perishable Train Schedules" book (research by Mark Amfahr, posted to UP Modelers group at Yahoogroups, March 26, 2007):
- train 280 (Idaho Falls to Salt Lake City) depart Pocatello 1:00am, arrive Ogden 5:15am; handles "rail truck, perishable and livestock traffic" assembled at Idaho Falls. Picks up similar traffic at Pocatello.
- train SLX "Salt Lake Manifest" (Butte to Salt Lake City) depart Pocatello 3:00am, arrive Ogden 9:30am; handles traffic from Butte, picks up livestock along Butte - Pocatello route, picks up stock from NWD territory at Pocatello, hog shipments (for LA area) connect to DLS ("Day Livestock" train) at Ogden.
- train BUS "Butte - Utah Stock" (Butte to Salt Lake City) depart Pocatello 2:30pm, arrive Ogden 9:00pm; handles traffic from Butte, picks up along Butte-Pocatello route, picks up at Pocatello traffic gathered at Pocatello destined Ogden and Salt Lake City or beyond.
- train PSX "Pocatello - South Manifest" (Pocatello to Salt Lake City) depart Pocatello 8:00pm, arrive Ogden 2:30am; handles perishable, livestock and manifest assembling at Pocatello for Ogden and points south. Connects with train DLS at Ogden or Salt Lake City.
- train BFU "Butte Cleanup" (Salt Lake City to Butte); depart Ogden 10:00am, arrive Pocatello 4:30pm; handles traffic gathered at SLC/Ogden destined north & west of Pocatello.
- train 279 (Salt Lake City to Idaho Falls) depart Ogden 8:55pm, arrive Pocatello 12:30am; handles "rail truck and perishable traffic" destined north & west of Pocatello.
- train 277 (Salt Lake City to Butte) depart Ogden 10:15pm, arrive Pocatello 5:00am; same traffic as BFU.
Note: that listing does not include branch jobs, locals etc that would have operated on the line, such as jobs to/from the Little Mountain branch handling salt, etc.
November 15, 1955
OSL closed the agency station at Trenton, and the work of the depot agent was moved to Cache Junction. The building was sold on May 18, 1956 to the Cache Valley Turkey Growers Association for $600 and was to be moved by January 1957. (Work order 4781; Public Service Commission of Utah, case 3248)
Under work order 4781, approved on May 3, 1956, the 24 feet by 99 feet depot was retired, along with the train order signal and a nearby 8 feet by 16 feet outbuilding. The depot consisted of a 24 feet by 64 feet combination freight and passenger depot, with a 24 feet by 35 feet extension added in 1917. The outbuilding was a combination coal storage and out house. The train order signal was a "No. 150 Assembly B, with Electric Light" with steel mast. The work order included the installation of a 8 feet by 10.7 feet prefabricated metal shelter building for passengers waiting for their train to arrive. The work order was commenced on July 13, 1956, and was completed on March 28, 1957. The foundation for the prefabricated building was completed on December 27, 1956. The depot building was actually moved on January 2, 1957.
The concrete and steel coaling station at Echo was demolished.
March 11, 1956
GM's Aerotrain stopped in Salt Lake City (Salt Lake Tribune, March 12, 1956)
"9,500 Utahns See 'Aerotrain' On U.P. Swing Into State -- After being admired and examined by more than 9,500 Utahns, a forerunner of tomorrows passenger trains was on its way Sunday to other points on the Union Pacific Railroad.
"Aerotrain," a General Motors conception of modern rail transportation, was viewed Saturday and Sunday during stops at stations in Salt Lake City and Ogden.
"The 400-passenger prototype was lent to U.P. so the railroad's engineers could exhibit it and try it on the company's lines.
"Main difference in the 102-mile-an-hour train from present units, is that each 40-passenger, 32-ton car is cushioned by air-filled bellows rather than steel springs as the older 80-passenger, 65-ton models now being used.
"U.P. has no similar lightweight trains in operation, but is merely trying out the new design, officials said.
"Other stops are planned at Boise, Idaho, March 16 from 8 to 11 a.m. and at Pocatello, Idaho, March 16, between 7 and 9 p.m."
"When it fills in an intermediate gap in 1958, Union Pacific will have C.T.C. all the way from Granger, Wyo., to Hinkle, Ore., 756 miles. Also, UP will then boast 2030 miles of C.T.C. systemwide -- more, it claims, than any other U.S. road." (Trains magazine, August 1957, page 12)
Union Pacific began using computers for its payroll and car movement data. Previously, car movement data had been by use of IBM punch cards.
November 25, 1958
UP received ICC approval to purchase the portion of Bamberger Railroad between Ogden and Hill Air Force Base. "F. D. No. 20367, Union Pacific Railroad Company Purchase (Portion), Bamberger Railroad Company. Decided November 25, 1958. (Embraced in F. D. No. 20338)." (ICC Finance Reports, Volume 307, page 804, "Cases Disposed Of Without Printed Report.")
March 30, 1959
Union Pacific donated the Honeyville depot to the National Society of the Sons of Utah Pioneers, at no charge. The depot was to be moved for display at Pioneer Village at Corinne, Utah. The depot was to be moved at the society's own expense by May 9, 1959, and placed on property leased by the society at Corinne, Utah. (Union Pacific Purchasing Department Sale Order No. 337, Omaha, dated March 30, 1959, with accompanying internal communications dated April 1, 1959)
UP joined Trailer Train, the national trailer-on-flat-car (TOFC) pool. UP's connecting road at Ogden, SP, also joined Trailer Train in 1960. Competing road WP started TOFC service, better known as "piggyback" service, in 1959 between Salt Lake City and Oakland. D&RGW joined in 1963. (The Tioga Group, Intermodal Timeline, 1954 to 1966)
"NEW HOME FOR THE HYBRID: Union Pacific, a railroad known for variety in motive power, has picked up an odd one: Bamberger Railroad diesel 570, now UP 1270. Bamberger (which folded last year ) got the early road-switcher from Alco-GE in 1943. Although the few units built up to that time had been partly requisitioned for wartime use in Iran, the Utah electric rated One complete with heating boiler (and a trolley pole to throw signals ) for its troop trains. The Alco's silhouette became truly unforgettable in 1951, when upgrading at La Grange gave it an EMD hood." (Trains magazine, January 1960, page 14)
April 27, 1960
UP retired the small passenger shelter (10 feet by 12 feet) and gravel loading platform at Washakie, Utah, located on the Malad Branch near Portage, Utah. The shelter was served by the daily Malad Local mixed train. (UP Work Order 5761, completed April 27, 1960)
June 11, 1960
With the retirement of the last of UP's steam locomotives in late 1959, and steam locomotives no longer needing to be serviced at Ogden, the large coaling station was demolished and removed. A photo dated June 11, 1960 shows that the large coaling station was being removed at that time. The large and extensive overhead structure was already gone, with only the trackside vertical steel beams and minimal horizontal steel beams still in place.
September 25, 1960
UP combined its City of San Francisco and City of Los Angeles trains between Omaha and Ogden, as Train 103/104. At Ogden the train was split, with Oakland-bound passengers going by way of SP, and Los Angeles-bound passengers remaining on UP. (part from The Streamliners, Kratville, page 517)
Union Pacific Coal Company was dissolved and all properties transferred to the railroad. (Moody's, 1973 p. 511)
December 7, 1962
Union Pacific received approval from the Public Service Commission of Utah to discontinue the agency station at Wahsatch, Utah. The Commission allowed the agency station to be closed, and the depot building to be removed. The depot was to be replaced by a telephone and drop box for use by customers to leave and receive waybills and livestock contracts, and to communicate with the full-time agents at either Echo, Utah (25 miles west of Wahsatch), or Evanston, Wyoming (10-1/2 miles east of Wahsatch). The then-current agent at Wahsatch resided in Echo, and commuted each morning and evening to Wahsatch to perform his duties. (Public Service Commission of Utah case 5170)
"There have been no express shipments at the station of Wahsatch, Utah, either inbound or outbound, and no ticket sales or revenue of any kind from passenger service; and there have been no shipments of incidental items such as baggage and milk or cream from said Wahsatch station for several years. That for several years there have been no LCL shipments moving out from the station of Wahsatch, and in recent years there have been only one or two incidental shipments of LCL freight into Wahsatch, most of such shipments having been made by the applicant railroad itself or by construction contractors at times when there has been construction in the area."
"Over some years past there have been shipments of wool moving out from the station of Wahsatch in the spring, but the sheep men who range their sheep in the vicinity of Wahsatch in the summer have now discontinued shearing at Wahsatch and have sheared their sheep before leaving the desert in the spring, and there is now no wool being shipped out from the station at Wahsatch."
During 1959, 286 cars (253 sheep; 26 cattle) had been shipped from Wahsatch, and 229 cars (201 sheep; 13 cattle) had been received, along with a 1,000-pound LCL shipment. During 1960, 288 cars (256 sheep; 24 cattle) had been shipped, and 297 cars (263 sheep; 30 cattle) had been received, along with a 100-pound LCL shipment. During 1961, 204 cars (185 sheep; 13 cattle) had been shipped, and 214 cars (170 sheep; 14 cattle) had been received., along with a 200-pound LCL shipment.
May 13, 1963
Union Pacific Railroad announced a proposed merger with Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad. (New York Times, May 14, 1963) (Read more about the proposed UP-Rock Island merger)
July 13, 1963
The former Clearfield Naval Supply Depot was turned over to private ownership under the name of Freeport Center, Inc., a Utah corporation controlled by Russell W. Schmacher of Danville, California. Schumacher had purchased the surplus facility from the federal General Services Administration for $5,752,877. Freeport Center, Inc., took title to the supply depot on June 1, 1963. The concept of a freeport center was to take advantage of a recently passed law from the Utah state legislature to eliminate inventory taxes, and certain taxes on certain types of manufacturing. The former Naval Supply Depot had been the largest Naval supply depot in the western United States, and as a privately owned warehouse center, represented five percent of the public warehouse space available in the continental Unites States. The purchase included three miles of railroad line and a locomotive roundhouse. The earliest tenants included Whirlpool-Sears, Westinghouse Electric, and California Packing Corporation (Del Monte), along with Roger Brothers, an Idaho company that stored diced, sliced, mashed and dehydrated potatoes. (New York Times, July 14, 1963)
The following comes from the January 1965 issue of Modern Railroads magazine:
MECHANICAL . . . Acquired 68 diesel-electric locomotives, including 42 with 5000-hp or more, 24 2500-hp and two 2400-hp. Purchased 2700 freight cars, including 50 86-ft 70-ton boxcars, 80 60-ft 90-ton boxcars, 78 60-ft 70-ton boxcars, 400 50-ft 70-ton boxcars, 100 50-ft 90-ton boxcars, 200 50-ft 70-ton insulated boxcars, 300 40-ft 50-ton boxcars, 200 40-ft 50-ton reconstructed boxcars, 50 90-ton hopper bottom cars, 100 60-ft 70-ton flatcars, 300 53-ft 70-ton flatcars, 17 articulated 110-ft 140-ton reconstructed flatcars, 30 triple-deck stock cars, 200 52-ft 70-ton solid-bottom gondolas, 200 90-ton covered hoppers, 25 100-ton covered hoppers, and 100 new cabooses. For PFE, acquired 500 70-ton mechanical reefers and 100 89-ft flatcars for TOFC service. Acquired 100 new 60-ft postal storage cars, nine 44-seat leg-rest coaches, five buffet-lounge cars, and began work on reconstruction of 19 sleepers with 11 bedrooms each.
SIGNALS AND COMMUNICATIONS . . . Added 785 miles of microwave and began work on another 712 miles. Work completed includes a 750-mile link between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles, and links between Omaha and Salt Lake City, and Portland and Hinkle.
PLANS FOR 1965:
MECHANICAL . . . Will acquire 23 5000-hp diesel-electric locomotive units, 20 44-seat coaches, and 3617 freight cars, including 2000 40-ft 50-ton reconstructed boxcars, 12 86-ft 70-ton boxcars, 105 60-ft 90-ton boxcars, 700 50-ft 70-ton boxcars, 400 50-ft 70-ton insulated boxcars. 200 53-ft 70-ton flatcars, 200 90-ton hoppers and 200 90-ton covered hoppers. For PFE, will acquire 750 70-ton mechanical reefers.
ENGINEERING . . . Convert separate single tracks of UP and WP between Salt Lake City and Garfield, Utah, into paired double-track operation. This will include a fully prestressed concrete bridge and laying continuous welded rail.
"Another O.K. for TOFC -- Over trucker opposition, U. S. Supreme Court has upheld lower court ruling allowing freight forwarders to use piggyback Plans III and IV (under which shippers provide their own trailers or their own trailers and flat cars respectively)." (Trains magazine, January 1965, page 7, "Arrivals & Departures")
The coaling station at Cache Junction was dismantled in June 1965. (A color slide taken by Dave England, dated June 1965 on the slide mount, shows the structure being demolished by a salvage contractor.)
Union Pacific announced that it would spend $32.1 million on new equipment, including 40 locomotives with 3,000 horsepower and five with 2,800 horsepower, and 650 double-door 70-ton box cars, 100 insulated 70-ton box cars, 100 90-ton open top hopper cars, and 15 89-foot flat cars for piggyback loading. (New York Times, May 14, 1966)
December 31, 1966
The ICC approval for the curtailment of Ogden Union Railway & Depot Company freight operations became effective, allowing UP and SP to divide the freight operations of the joint company. At the same time, SP was allowed to build a direct connection with D&RGW at Ogden, opening the Ogden gateway. (Ogden Standard Examiner, December 6, 1966)
January 27, 1967
The United States Postal Service discontinued the use of a Railway Post Office between Ogden and Los Angeles. (The Streamliners, Kratville, page 518)
WP and UP completed a line change to allow the construction of today's I-80, west of Salt Lake City. Included was a new line for WP from about 1000 West, paralleling UP's LA&SL line west to Gladiola Street, at about 3200 West. WP's mainline was abandoned upon completion of the line change, which included a new location called "WP-UP Junction" at about 1100 West. The original WP/LA&SL diamond crossing at Navajo Street was abandoned and the tracks between the new WP-UP Junction and Smelter, 15 miles to the west, were operated as joint trackage. (Track and Time, by Jeff Asay, page 94)
WP-UP Junction, a double crossover at about 1100 West in Salt Lake City, was added in 1967 to replace the "Navajo Street" diamond-crossing at about 1400 West. As noted above, Jeff Asay wrote that the change was to put the WP and UP(LA&SL) lines west from Salt Lake City, on a common alignment in preparation for what today is I-80, and the new superhighway's crossing over the two rail lines at Cheyenne Street (about 1550 West).
(In 1983, with the common ownership of both UP and WP lines after their merger, the need went away to crossover to WP-owned tracks before the ownership changed at the Jordan River, and the double crossover was moved 1-1/4 miles west to Orange Street, west of Redwood Road between 300 and 400 South.)
Sometime in either February of March 1967, the local Promontory Chapter of National Railway Historical Society arranged for a group trip to ride the last UP mixed train providing passenger service between Provo and Salt Lake City. The group traveled from Salt Lake City to Provo by way of D&RGW's Prospector train. At Provo, UP provided a UP combination mail-baggage-passenger car, and a 500-series coach for the group to return to Salt Lake City. This was the last Union Pacific passenger train between Provo and Salt Lake City. (as recalled by Dave England)
October 11-12-13, 1967
The U. S. Post Office discontinued Railway Post Office service between Omaha, Ogden and San Francisco. RPO service was discontinued specifically on SP mail trains 21 and 22 between Ogden and San Francisco, and UP mail trains 5 and 6 between Omaha and Ogden, along with trains 101 and 102 (City of San Francisco) and trains 103 and 104 (City of Los Angeles). (U. S. Post Office letter dated September 21, 1967, from Postmaster in Ogden, Utah, to all affected employees, courtesy of Bob McKeen)
The last trip of RPO "Mobile Unit" service was on the following dates, on the following trains:
- October 11, 1967 -- Train 102; departing eastbound from Lovelock, Nevada
- October 12, 1967 -- Train 22; departing eastbound from Lovelock, Nevada
- October 12, 1967 -- Train 101; departing westbound from Ogden, Utah
- October 12, 1967 -- Train 5; departing westbound from Cheyenne, Wyoming
- October 12, 1967 -- Train 103; departing westbound from Cheyenne, Wyoming
- October 12, 1967 -- Train 6; departing eastbound from Ogden, Utah
- October 12, 1967 -- Train 104; departing eastbound from Ogden, Utah
- October 13, 1967 -- Train 21; departing westbound from Ogden, Utah
In 1968 D&RGW and UP began operation of a unit coal train between Sunnyside, Utah, and the Kaiser steel mill in Fontana, California. The train used dedicated full trains of high-sided gondola cars that were loaded at Sunnyside and unloaded at Fontana. The trains also used dedicated sets of SD45 locomotives from both Union Pacific (12 locomotives) and D&RGW (six locomotives).
In 1968, Union Pacific completed its first automatic classification yard, named Edd H. Bailey Yard in honor of the railroad's president. Located at North Platte, Nebraska, it was built along side an existing classification yard that was completed in 1948. It became Bailey East in 1980 when the original yard, completed in 1948, was replaced by a new more modern automatic classification yard, which took the name Bailey West.
Together with Salt Lake City, UP developed its Centennial Business Park on Salt Lake City's west side. (Read more about UP's west side business parks)
September 18, 1968
The Utah Public Service Commission held a public hearing for the closure of St. John as an agency station on Union Pacific. "Applicant alleges that inasmuch as there have been no passenger tickets sold at St. John for many years, and now Western Union business for over three years and no REA express business remaining, it is no longer necessary from the standpoint of convenience and necessity to maintain an agent at the St. John Station; and that incidental and miscellaneous service such as demurrage, sanding and bedding or similar items can be handled through the Agent at the station of Warner some 12 miles northerly from St. John; also that railroad billings and collections of freight are handled through the Agent at Warner rather than through the Agent at St. John; and there has come to be little or no business which would require the presence of an Agent at St. John." (Utah Public Service Commission case No. 5975, dated August 15, 1968)
October 24, 1968
On October 24, 1968, in Case #6009, the Utah Public Service Commission approved UP's request to close the agency station at Devils Slide. The agent assigned was Glenn S. Ridge, and he apparently retired on January 30, 1969, after 57 years service. He had been Devils Slide station agent since 1956. (Utah Public Service Commission case index cards, Case 6009, Utah State Archives; Park Record, February 29, 1968; January 30, 1969)
November 22, 1969
Santa Fe's Super Chief passenger train was detoured between Barstow, California, and Denver, Colorado, by way of Union Pacific's route through Las Vegas and Salt Lake City. It was reported that the detour was most likely because of the November 1969 derailment near Maine, Arizona. A westbound potash train with remote control mid-train helpers derailed when the helpers failed to stop pushing and jackknifed the train. Unfortunately, a eastbound high priority freight was passing it at the time and got derailed itself. The scene of the derailment was reported as being "spectacular, with debris everywhere." (Date and detour route from a Union Pacific internal "Telegram" dated November 22, 1969, advising of the details of the detour.)
"SLake - Nov 22, 1969
ATSF No.18 Super Chief Unit 106-103-102, SD45 3600-HP,
90 MPH units, 19 cars detoured Barstow to Denver via UP, leave Yermo
1215PM PST date. Doubled crew with SFE crews.
Will require condr-pilot to work LVegas to SLake, Engr-pilot
to work LVegas to Milford, and Milford to SLake.
SLake furnish condr and engr-pilot SLake to Ogden and DH home
first available train or bus. RAF 1159a"
May 7, 1970
Union Pacific moved its Salt Lake City freight offices from the freight depot at 5th West and 1st South, north to its North Yard freight office at 701 North 4th West. (Deseret News, May 7, 1970)
The following comes from the September 1970 issue of Railroad magazine, through the courtesy of Thornton Waite:
Ogden, Utah, once a famous railroad center, no longer has a redcap employed in its Union Depot. The last two porters there have retired. This community is less than 75 miles from where the nation's first transcontinental railroad was joined. Twenty-five passenger trains once stopped at Union Depot daily, enough to keep 12 redcaps busy.
Today only one train--Union Pacific's City of Los Angeles, which runs between the West Coast and Chicago--brings passengers through on a daily basis. Three other trains, six if you count the round trips, pass through on a tri-weekly basis.
The following comes from the February 1971 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 3, Number 3, February 1971, page 3):
1971 Capital Expenditures Will Total $121 Million -- John C. Kenefick, chief executive officer of the transportation division, announced that Union Pacific's 1971 capital expenditures program for roadway and equipment will total $121 million.
Kenefick said the program is down from last year's $166.9 million investment and reflects the unsettled situation of national rail earnings. He said the figure will be broken down to $20.4 million for road and $100.6 million for equipment.
The equipment outlay will go for 75 new diesel locomotives, 2,619 new freight cars, 182 diesel main engines and $4.1 million of work equipment.
The 75 locomotives ordered are comprised of three groups. One group of twelve consists of 6,600 horsepower EMD DD-40-X (Centennial type) locomotives. The Centennial types are members of the 6900-series. Twenty-three of the locomotives ordered will be 5,000 horsepower General Electric U50-C's; these locomotives bear numbers in the 5000-series. The final forty locomotives consist of 3,000 horsepower EMD SD-40's; other UP locomotives of this type are currently numbered in the 3000-series.
The freight car order will contain 600 high capacity covered hopper cars rated at 100 tons each. The covered hoppers are much preferred by grain shippers over the standard boxcar because of their capacity and ease of loading and unloading.
Other freight cars on order for 1971 include 1,000 70-ton boxcars, 50 feet six inches in length; 100 70-ton boxcars, 51 feet eight inches in length; 50 air slide covered hopper cars of 100-ton capacity, 200 open top hopper cars of 100-ton capacity; 61 solid bottom gondola cars of 125-ton capacity; eight 50-ton gondola cars and 600 mechanical refrigerator cars for Pacific Fruit Express Company.
The equipment order will also contain 50 container chassis used for shuttling containers between West Coast container facilities and the dock areas. This investment reflects the growth in container traffic through UP's Pacific ports.
UP's $20 million roadway program for 1971 calls for the installation of 820,500 new cross ties, 215 miles of new rail and track surface and lining work on 1,200 miles of track.
First ACI Scanner -- Union Pacific has taken another big step into the field of electronic operations with the installation of its first automatic car identification (ACI) scanner and computer at Julesburg, Colorado.
The scanner is located on the south side of the eastbound main line just west of the depot at Julesburg. It will monitor all eastbound trains headed for Bailey Yard at North Platte, and provide the yard with an advanced list of all cars on incoming trains to be double checked against the advance consist report which normally precedes each train.
UP, along with the other railroads in the United States, began two years ago to label all freight cars with rectangular, color-coded identification plates. The high-speed scanner has the ability to read each plate three times as the train flashes by at any speed up to 80 mph
A light from the scanner reflects the color code on each plate back into the scanner. It is then fed into a computer housed in a nearby building. The computer deciphers the reflected color code into a car number and ownership and transmits this information over the microwave communications system to Bailey Yard. There, the information comes out on a teleprinter, listing in order the cars which are in the train.
This accurate double check enables Bailey Yard personnel to program the classification and switching of the train before it arrives in the yard.
John C. Kenefick, chief executive officer of the transportation division, said the unit was installed to develop the potential of ACI equipment as well as provide North Platte with a double check on inbound trains.
East L. A. Yard Progresses -- August 1 is the scheduled completion date of the new $2.8 million retarder yard in East Los Angeles, California. The new yard, which will be able to handle two to three cars per minute over the crest of its hill, is smaller than either of the retarder yards at North Platte or the one at Pocatello.
Capacity of the new facility's sixteen tracks is listed as 571 cars. The automatic, weight sensitive retarders (the first such on UP) and the electrical equipment for controlling the automatic switches was produced by the General Railway Signal Co.
The switches in the yard will be operated from controls housed in a structure located at the crest of the hump. Small retarders at the end of each classification track will prevent cars from rolling completely through the yard.
Though August 1 is the scheduled completion date, first operations in the yard should begin after June 1.
The new retarder yard is a very important addition to Union Pacific operations in the Southwest. The tremendous increase in traffic both into and out of Los Angeles resulting from increased demands imposed by import-export traffic, as well as industrial growth in the area, was severely taxing the older yard. This addition to the East Los Angeles facilities will help solve the acute problems of car handling and result in more expeditious delivery of cars to UP customers in Southern California.
The following comes from the April-May 1971 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 3, Numbers 6 and 7, April-May 1971, page 3):
More Developments In Coal Traffic -- Union Pacific and Eastern Gas and Fuel Associates announced an important forward step in a plan to mine low sulphur coal throughout the Western United States for sale in domestic and foreign markets. This is being done through the formation of Rocky Mountain Associated Coal Corp. and will involve an initial investment of $10 million for the construction and development of additional coal producing facilities in Wyoming. Further substantial investment is contemplated to meet the known demand for Wyoming low sulphur coal.
Rocky Mountain Associated Coal Corp. will acquire from Rocky Mountain Energy Company, a UP subsidiary, the Reliance Mine near Rock Springs, Wyoming, which will be enlarged to 1,500,000 tons per year. Development of several additional mines is being planned for the production of coal from Rocky Mountain reserves.
Chairman of the board of directors and chief executive officer of Union Pacific Corporation, Frank E. Barnett, said, `This significant development will help meet the growing demand for low sulphur fuel. It represents a major advance in our efforts to develop Union Pacific's Rocky Mountain low sulphur coal reserves, initially in Wyoming, and we are confident it will rapidly lead to a substantial increase in our present Wyoming activities."
Eli Goldston, president of Eastern Gas and Fuel Associates, said that its subsidiary, Eastern Association Coal Corp., regards the move westward as an opportunity to participate in the substantial long-term growth of electric energy generation in this rapidly developing area of the country.
Amtrak (Railpax) -- As of April 16, 1971, Union Pacific has entered into a contract with the National Railroad Passenger Corporation as a result of which, effective May 1, 1971; Union Pacific has discontinued all intercity rail passenger service.
However, UP operates an NRPC train for that corporation between Denver and Ogden on a triweekly basis. This train, operated between Chicago and San Francisco, is routed over Burlington Northern between Chicago and Denver and over Southern Pacific between Ogden and the San Francisco area.
Utah Improvements -- A total of $4.8 million will be spent on the Utah Division, including the replacement of 63.83 miles of main line with continuous welded rail. Strings of the new rail are being installed between Cruz and Champlin.
New 133-pound rail will be installed in .88 miles between Curvo and Gateway. Rail of this weight has already been installed on .75 miles of curves between Pehrson and Lofgreen.
Resurfacing and lining between Ogden and Brigham City and between Wahsatch and Echo will use 29,100 cubic yards of ballast while tie gangs will replace 22,100 ties.
PFE Receiving 1,200 New Cars -- Acquisition of 1,200 new multi-purpose mechanical refrigerator cars for operation by Pacific Fruit Express Company was announced recently by its owners, Union Pacific Railroad Company and Southern Pacific Transportation Company.
The first cars of this $40 million order rolled off the Pacific Car & Foundry Company assembly line at Renton, Washington, about April 1 and the entire 1,200 on order should be in service by mid-July. This order will increase the mechanical refrigerator car fleet to 13,200-half of the entire national supply.
These cars are the most advanced refrigerator cars that modern technology has developed, L. D. Schley, vice president and general manager of PFE, stated. "Along with other refrigerator equipment in the PFE fleet, they will be used to transport fresh, frozen and other perishables from Western growing areas to consuming areas throughout the United States and Canada.
"They will provide constant pre-set temperatures ranging from below zero to plus 70 degrees F. and will provide shippers with the lowest cost per unit in transportation today, if the full capacity of the car is utilized. These high-cube cars can carry 65 tons in a 4,000-cubic-foot chamber," Schley added.
June 21, 1971
Union Pacific and Western Pacific began operating a run-through train between North Platte and Stockton, California, pooling both locomotives and cabooses. (Pacific News, September 1971, page 13, reported by Richard Dorn)
June 26, 1971
All non-railroad properties transferred to Union Pacific Corporation. (Moody's, 1973 p. 511)
September 23, 1971
Union Pacific formally completed its Little Mountain Branch, northwest of Ogden, serving the new industrial development complex northwest of Ogden, Utah, on the east shore of Great Salt Lake. (Union Pacific Info magazine, November 1971, page 15)
In May 1967, Great Salt Lake Minerals and Chemicals Corp. had begun building a large plant for commercial extraction of potassium sulfate, sodium sulfate, and magnesium chloride, along with common salt. The plant included 17,000 acres of evaporation ponds just north of Little Mountain, west of Ogden on the lake's eastern shore. (Peter Behrens, "Industrial Processing of Great Salt Lake Brines by Great Salt Lake Minerals & Chemicals Corporation", Great Salt Lake, a Scientific, Historical and Economic Overview, p. 223)
The following comes from the November 1971 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 3, Number 12, November 1971, page 15):
John C. Kenefick Elected Union Pacific President -- "It was a joy to came back." October 1, 1971 was an important day for Union Pacific Railroad. On that day John C. Kenefick. became the company's president.
Born December 26, 1921, in Buffalo, New York, Kenefick was the son of an attorney. As a boy, he was fascinated by trains and, in fact, subscribed to Railway Age when he was 12. Early in life he decided he wanted a career in railroading. When it came time to attend college, he chose Princeton because it was a good school and he majored in mechanical engineering because he thought it would be useful in railroad work. After graduating from Princeton and serving three years as a Navy officer, primarily in the Pacific, Kenefick went to work as a machinist's helper in the New York Central roundhouse at Buffalo, New York. In six months he left NYC, and heeding Horace Greeley's advice, loaded his possessions in a 1939 Buick and headed west.
Kenefick came to Omaha and succeeded in landing a job in UP's mechanical department. He was hired as a draftsman in the section that designed and made drawings of locomotives. After a year, he left the mechanical department and hired out as a brakeman-he thought it would be a good way to learn more about the railroad business. In six months he was appointed assistant trainmaster at Kansas City, and he later became trainmaster at Salina. In 1952, Kenefick joined the Denver & Rio Grande Western where he served in various capacities, finally becoming division superintendent at Alamosa, Colorado.
In 1954, he went back to New York Central where he served as a trouble shooter. He held various jobs as assistant superintendent and superintendent. He rose through the ranks and became general manager of the New York District. Kenefick was named general manager of transportation for the system in 1958, assistant vice president-operations in 1965 and vice president-operations in 1966. Effective with the merger of the New York Central and the Pennsylvania railroads on February 1, 1968, Kenefick became vice president-transportation for the Penn Central.
John Kenefick returned to Union Pacific on May 1, 1968, as vice president-operations. He said, "it was a joy to come back." Kenefick became executive vice president in 1969, was elected chief executive officer of the transportation division September 1, 1970 and became president October 1, 1971. Union Pacific's new president is a firm believer that the more an employee knows about UP, the more valuable he will be to the company. He applies that rule to himself, as well, having recently completed an eight-day inspection tour of the Eastern and South Central Districts. He summed up his approach by telling INFO, "You can't see the railroad from 35,000 feet in the air!"
Little Mountain Branch Opened -- On September 27, the Little Mountain branch was opened for service. Approximately 13 miles in length, the trackage serves the Great Salt Lake Minerals & Chemical Corporation located on the shores of Utah's Great Salt Lake.
Council Bluffs One-Spot -- During the month of October, it was reported that the new car repair facility located in Council Bluffs was approximately 73% complete. Work was also underway on the new diesel house and fueling and sanding facilities in Pocatello.
Evanston Reclamation Plant Closes -- Union Pacific will transfer the functions of the Evanston, Wyoming reclamation plant and store to Cheyenne. Transfer allowances and other protective benefits are being worked out for the employees of the Evanston plant and store who will be affected.
PICL At Green River -- Installation was begun of the new PICL system to be incorporated at various major yards and terminals. The first terminal to be included is Green River. The new PICL system is designed to be an integral part of the future COIN II, as well as improve the quality of present COIN I reporting. A report on the new PICL system will be featured in a future issue of INFO.
Ford Fast Train -- On November 18, Union Pacific will begin receiving at Denver unit trainloads of Ford Motor Company parts for assembly line production at Milpitas, California. Operating on an extremely fast schedule from Flat Rock, Michigan, to Milpitas, the train is designated FAST for Ford-Auto-Service-Train. (The original source states the origin as Flat Rock, Illinois)
Beginning in January, 1972, UP will begin receiving this train for a six month period at Kansas City. Concentration of auto parts into a single-unit train operated on close schedule has enabled Ford Motor Company to reduce in-transit inventory of parts.
8444 Completed -- Steam locomotive No. 8444, fresh from the Omaha shops, made a round trip from Omaha to Valley, Nebraska, on November 3, and again on November 7. On board the first trip were president Kenefick and his guests, Omaha mayor Gene Leahy and commander of the Strategic Air Command, General Bruce K. Holloway.
Ore Shipment Moves Over New Track -- Union Pacific raised its operating track mileage from a little under 9,473 miles to a little over 9,473 October 27, when the first train crossed over a section of rail completed just minutes before. Built to accommodate a unit train which made its initial trip October 24, the 751-foot Thenard Connection in the Wilmington district of Los Angeles joins the UP's San Pedro branch with Southern Pacific trackage leading to Los Angeles harbor.
The first train carried the second of a planned 100-a-year, 5,000-ton shipments of iron ore to the Port of Los Angeles bulk loading facility. The ore is from the Standard Slag Company's mine at Beck Springs, about 20 miles southeast of Tecopa, California. John Harmon, the Standard Slag Company's western division manager at Reno, Nevada, said the ore has been sold to Tonan Trading Company, Tokyo, agents for Japanese steel mills.
Trucked 49 miles from the mine in northeast San Bernardino County to Cima, California, the ore is loaded into a 50-car "unit train". A 15-hour, 280-mile rail haul brings it to the bulk loader at Berth 49 for transfer to the holds of ore-carrying vessels.
UP has ordered 55 new ore cars especially for the service at a cost of about $900,000 and has assigned four 3,600 horsepower locomotive units to handle the train. Until delivery of the new cars at year's end, the ore is being hauled in gondolas.
The train is known as the "CUW" (Cima Unit West). The CUW with its opposite and eastbound empty train, the CUE; is one of seven UP unit trains in coal or ore service and the second unit train in export service.
Frank Acord -- Frank D. Acord has been appointed chief mechanical officer, effective October 1. Acord, a 35-year veteran, joined the UP at Cheyenne, Wyoming as machinist apprentice in 1936. After being promoted to machinist in 1940, he became enginehouse foreman at Ogden in 1944. Serving as general foreman at Provo, Utah; district foreman at North Platte, Nebraska. and master mechanic at Los Angeles, Salt Lake City and Cheyenne, Acord was named mechanical superintendent of the eastern district in 1962.
Becoming assistant general superintendent of motive power and machinery in 1966, he was appointed general superintendent, motive power and machinery in Omaha, June 1, 1970.
John McDonough -- John F. McDonough, a 22-year railroad veteran, has been named mechanical superintendent of shops in Omaha, effective October 1. Coming from the Penn-Central Railroad, McDonough has been general shop superintendent at their locomotive shop in Cleveland, Ohio since 1969. Previously he worked in various positions for the New York Central Railroad, starting in the road's mechanical department and later being appointed general shop superintendent in 1967 in East Rochester, New York.
The following comes from the December 1971 issue of Pacific News:
NEW UN IT TRAIN -- In addition to Southern Pacific's ore trains from Eagle Mountain and Union Pacific's unit coal train from Utah, the U.P. has begun bringing in iron ore from the Standard Slag Company's mine at Beck, Ca. The ore is mostly magnetite with some hematite and will be sold to the Tonan Trading Company of Tokyo who are the agents for different Japanese steel mills. The 15-hour, 280-mile rail haul originates at Cima, California, where the ore is loaded into the train known as the "CUW" (Cima Unit West). The current schedule includes 8 hours for loading, 24 hours for unloading and four hours for servicing at Union Pacific's East Los Angeles Yard. Currently gondolas are in used with 55 new ore cars on special order for the service at a cost of about $900,000. Consist of the train on November 9th was SD24 #421, SD24B's 418B, 425B, 440B and GP9 #322. There are a planned 100 5000-ton shipments per year, to be unloaded at Berth 49 in San Pedro. (reported by Leon Callaway, Pacific News, December 1971, page 15)
The following comes from the December 1971 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 4, Number 1, December 1971, page 3):
More On Auto Parts -- Beginning December 7, at Chicago and December 8, at Council Bluffs, and daily thereafter, General Motors assembly line parts for the Warm Springs-Fremont, California assembly plant as well as autos and parts for Oakland, California, will be operated as a unit train routed CRI&P-UP-SP on an expedited schedule of 62 hours from Chicago to destination. General Motors traffic moving through Kansas City will be added to the main segment of "ARRO", as the train is designated, at North Platte. The benefits to General Motors will be one day less transit time and a corresponding reduction in the inventory on the traffic moving via Chicago.
New Power For 1972 -- Orders have been placed with Electro-Motive Division of General Motors for 50 3000-HP SD40-2 diesel electric locomotives for delivery in January and February, 1972. The SD40-2's will be numbered 3123-3172. Orders have also been placed with General Electric Co. for 20 3000-HP U30-C diesel electric locomotives. The GE units, numbered 2810-2829, are scheduled for delivery April through June, 1972.
Shop Renovation Plans Underway -- Preliminary planning is nearly complete on the $4-million renovation of the Omaha shops. The plans, announced earlier, call for a complete remodeling and rearrangement of the 150,000 square foot main machine and boiler shop building and the installation of more than $1.6 million worth of new equipment. After completion of the project, Omaha shops main function will be the repair of diesel components.
Council Bluffs Repair Facility -- The half million dollar, one spot car repair facility at Council Bluffs is scheduled for completion by January 1, 1972.
Maintenance Of Way Progress -- According to engineering department reports, this year's maintenance of way programs had accomplished the following as of November 12, 1971: 210.15 miles of new rail laid; 563,488 cross ties installed; 710.11 miles of track surfaced and lined.
Frank Bruner -- Frank D. Bruner has been appointed assistant chief mechanical officer, effective October 1. Bruner joined the UP in 1949 as electrician at Ogden. He was appointed general foreman at North Platte, Nebraska. in 1954. Four years later he was named supervisor of turbine power in Omaha followed by his appointment as mechanical superintendent of eastern district. In 1968 he was named mechanical superintendent of the UP system. He was then appointed assistant general superintendent of motive power and machinery in 1970.
Union Pacific removed the train sheds for the west side of the Salt Lake City depot. (Historic American Building Survey, by Utah State Division of History)
The Union Pacific depot at Layton was moved from the station grounds just south of the Gentile Street crossing (today's Veteran's Park), south about one-third mile to a new location. The building was turned 180 degrees so that the station agent's bay window faced east instead of west. Improvements were made and the building opened as Doug and Emmy's Restaurant.
The following comes from the January 1972 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (INFO, Volume 4, Number 2, January 1972, page 3)
Box Car Program -- Union Pacific's executive committee has authorized the construction of 375 box cars in company shops. The 50'6", 70-ton capacity cars, featuring combination 14' plug and sliding double doors, will replace a like number of older 40' box cars being retired.
Cars To Greatest Show On Earth -- Thirty UP passenger cars have been sold to Ringling Brothers-Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, Inc., for use in their circus trains. The big circus, which still moves by rail, purchased 14 baggage cars and 16 coaches.
CoB One-Spot Facility Open -- January 18, saw the opening of the new Council Bluffs car repair facility previously reported on this page.
Omaha Realignment Begins -- Realignment of the tracks from the Missouri River bridge to 16th St. in Omaha is underway. The new alignment will allow for more convenient movement of freight trains through Omaha.
Union Pacific demolished the Smithfield depot. (Photo by Rick Burn, dated January 1972, courtesy of Keith Ardinger)
April 27, 1972
The North Temple Street viaduct in Salt Lake City opened for traffic, two months ahead of schedule. The viaduct took street traffic over Union Pacific and D&RGW tracks. Weyher Construction Company served as general contractor for the $3.5 million project that replaced a "narrow and dilapidated structure". Construction was said to have taken only five months. (Deseret News, April 27, 1972)
Union Pacific rebuilt its tracks along Fourth West, between Second South and Ninth South, in Salt Lake City. The tracks were completely removed and new sub-roadbed was installed. New ballast, ties and heavier rail, including 6,000 feet of track and 23 new switches, were installed. The major feature was separating the track structure from the street structure with a curbing. Many of the original, but unused spurs were removed at the same time. The project cost $650,000, all at Union Pacific's expense, and was expected to be complete by the end of November. UP had 60 customers along the line. About six trains per day used the track, including the southbound iron ore train to Geneva Steel. The line was previously all double track. The new line included double track only between Fifth and Sixth South. (Deseret News, October 19, 1972)
October 25, 1972
Union Pacific formally donated 4-8-4 steam locomotive no. 833 to Salt Lake City in a ceremony in front of the locomotive's new home in Salt Lake City's Pioneer Park. The locomotive had been moved into place using a series of temporary panel tracks laid end-to-end from the railroad's line along 400 West. The move had taken place on October 23rd and 24th. The locomotive had been stored in Cheyenne, Wyoming since its retirement in 1962, and was offered as a donation to Salt Lake City in August 1972. (Deseret News, October 24, 1972, with a photo of UP 833 on 400 West; Union Pacific INFO, December 1972, page 13, with photos of the donation ceremony)
Union Pacific completed the "one-spot" car repair facility in Salt Lake City. Construction was begun in July. The facility was the latest of many one-spot car shops being built all over the Union Pacific system, the first was at Council Bluffs, opened in early 1972. (Union Pacific 072772r news release)
The following comes from the December 1972 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
More One-Spots Approved--Construction will begin soon on three more one-spot car repair facilities. The new one-spots will be located at Albina, Kansas City and North Platte. The Kansas City and North Platte installations will feature a "rabbit" car-moving system hitherto not included in the other one-spots. The "rabbit" uses a cable to move cars through the repair area, automatically stopping them at the appropriate repair spot. After repairs are complete, the cars will be moved to a holding area.
Equipment For 1973--Box cars, open top hoppers and bulkhead flats are among the new cars to be acquired in 1973. A total of 900 boxcars will be added to UP's fleet, including 500 70-ton, 52-foot insulated cars, and 100 each 60 feet 9 inches, 100-ton plain wall cars; 60 feet 9 inches, 70-ton high roof appliance cars; 60 feet 6 inches 100-ton insulated cars; and 40 feet 6 inches wood floor cars for zinc loading. For use in serving the ever-expanding coal market, 300 open-top, triple cross dump hoppers of 100-ton capacity will be added. Also included are 50 new 62 feet bulkhead flat cars of 100-ton capacity.
At Cheyenne--The trackage rearrangement at the west end of Cheyenne will be placed in service in the spring. Once the improvements are complete, control of the area will be handled from the CTC office.
Pocatello Car Shop--Springtime will also see the beginning of operations at the new Pocatello heavy car repair shop. Construction is well underway on the facility changes and additions.
Salt Lake City One-Spot Progress--Construction continues on the new Salt Lake City one-spot car repair facility. It is expected that the one-spot will be placed in service in January 1973.
Albina Progress--Mechanical Department office and locker rooms located in the old store building at Albina are nearing completion. Demolition of a portion of the old machine shop will start in January. Demolition will not begin until a new end wall has been constructed on the portion that will be retained.
Granger, Wyoming--The trackage realignment at Granger will be completed and put in service sometime in January.
The following comes from the January 1973 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 5, Number 2, January 1973, page 5):
Traction Motor Transporter -- At a time when everything is being containerized, the shipping of company material is no exception. For years, Union Pacific has been shipping mounted traction motors to different points over the system on wooden blocking in open gondola cars. Built over 50 years ago, these cars are today outdated and have seen years of service.
Covered gondola cars are currently being modified in the Omaha shops to carry both mounted traction motors and to ship containerized material. Two of the gondola cars are already in service with three more to come. In all, there will be three for Salt Lake City service and two for North Platte service. Three of the converted gondola cars will be used exclusively to ship traction motors, with a capacity of ten motors each, while two cars will be modified to each carry a total of six traction motors and miscellaneous containerized material.
Each car is capable of carrying either 13,000 pound GE traction motors or 11,000 pound EMD traction motors. All the cars have removable bulkheads for loading and unloading. The roof is divided into three sections for easy removal. When the car roof is intact, the words, "KEEP THIS CAR MOVING -IMPORTANT COMPANY MATERIAL" can be read printed across the car top.
When all five cars are in operation, there will be a car coming into Omaha and one leaving Omaha every day. Since speed is essential, it is estimated that the approximate time to complete a one-way trip can be cut from the previous seven days to one and one-half. This is divided into 31 hours of in-train time, two hours to load and unload and three hours of switching to complete a one-way trip.
The car weighs 70 tons; is 57 feet 1 inch long, 10 feet 8 inches wide and 10 feet 10 inches in height. When loaded to capacity, the cargo is valued at $108,000.
The following comes from the February 1973 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, February 1973, page 8)
Growth At Clearfield-Freeport -- A new railroad office building at Clearfield Freeport Center was opened on January 16, 1973. The new building combined the offices of UP, D&RGW, and the Western Weighing and Inspection Bureau. UP's offices had formerly been in UP's Clearfield depot. The offices of the other organizations had been in smaller buildings at the Freeport Center.
The following comes from the March 1973 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 5, Number 4, March 1973, page 4):
1972 Sets Record -- During the year 1972 Union Pacific Railroad set a new all-time record in the transportation of freight. Our railroad moved over 51.8 billion ton miles of freight. This total exceeds all previous records set in the 104 years since the driving of the golden spike.
Addition To 1973 Capital Expenditures -- UP's 1973 capital expenditures program has been expanded by an additional $19 million to a total investment this year of $139 million. The additional money will be spent for 600 new 100-ton covered hoppers and 20 additional 3,000 horsepower locomotives.
The cars will help bolster UP's supply of grain hauling equipment. The locomotive order is comprised of ten General Electric U30-C's and ten EMD SD40-2's. These equipment increases bring UP's '73 acquisitions of covered hoppers to 1,000 units and brings the total locomotives to be added to the fleet to 80.
Green River One-Spot -- Another of the successful one spot car repair facilities will be added to UP's growing list of modern repair plants. The one-spot will be similar to six others either in operation or under construction at various places on the system. Cost of the Green River one-spot will be nearly one-half million dollars.
New In The Past Two Months -- Since the first of January, UP has taken delivery on 891 pieces of new equipment. Leading the list was a delivery of 400 100-ton covered hoppers from Pullman-Standard. Other cars received were 300 open-top 100-ton hoppers from Bethlehem Steel; 100 60-ft 100-ton box cars from Gunderson, Inc.; 35 60-ft. 70-ton box cars also from Gunderson; and 54 40-ft. 70ton box cars from Albina shops.
Also added were a 250-ton diesel powered derrick, numbered 903050, and a 60-ton truck-mounted Holmes crane. Both derrick and crane have been assigned at Hinkle. The new derrick, manufactured by American Hoist & Derrick Co. of Bay City, Michigan, is the first 250-ton machine on the Northwestern District. When fully equipped, the derrick cost in excess of one-half million dollars.
Salt Lake City One-Spot Opens -- March 2, saw the opening of the new Salt Lake City one-spot car repair facility. The $640,000 installation is the second of seven planned one-spot plants to be placed in operation.
New UP-C&NW Run Through -- Effective March 2, a new schedule designed to handle high-class traffic such as containers, piggyback and other merchandise was established between Chicago and North Platte, via Fremont, Nebraska. The train operates from Chicago five days a week, Friday through Tuesday. At North Platte connections are made with already scheduled trains for west coast destinations.
The following comes from the April 1973 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 5, Number 5, April 1973, page 12):
New Era Of Freight Car Repairs, Salt Lake -- Maintenance of locomotives and cars has been undergoing dramatic changes on Union Pacific in recent years. The opening of another new one-spot gives us a good opportunity to make a comparison between the new and the old. Salt Lake City's one-spot will, as in Council Bluffs, replace the old rip track operation.
The opening of the Council Bluffs one-spot marked the beginning of UP's new era of freight car repair. The new Salt Lake City facility is the second such plant to be opened on Union Pacific property. Others are either planned or under construction at several locations on the system.
Traditionally, repairs to freight cars were performed by spotting the bad order cars on repair tracks. The car men would then take the necessary tools and materials to each car and then make the repairs. This system, at best, was inefficient.
In the "one-spot" operation, the cars are moved through well-tooled, well-stocked repair stations-in effect reversing the sequence of events by bringing the car to the repairman, his tools and materials. The new system is designed to achieve substantially increased efficiency and productivity and at the same time provide vastly improved work areas for the employees.
The Salt Lake City "one-spot" car repair facility consists of a 114 x 22-foot car repair service canopy with three tracks running the length of the structure. Two of the tracks are equipped with built-in jacking systems, jib cranes, air, lubricating oil, grease, gas for cutting torches and power for arc welding. All of these utilities are piped to each repair station.
A 30 x 170-foot shop building adjoins one side of the car repair service canopy, in which are offices, a carpenter shop, blacksmith shop, locker and washroom facilities.
The Riverdale By-Pass track was completed in September 1973, taking mainline trains along the west side of Riverdale Yard between Bridge Junction and East Riverdale. This by-pass track did away with the congestion of mainline trains needing to cross the west (compass north) end of Riverdale to get to the double track mainline that was along the opposite side of the yard. The construction of the Riverdale By-Pass track, and the addition of CTC from East Riverdale to Strawberry in 1974, was an extension of the CTC territory that was already in place between Salt Lake City and Ogden at Bridge Junction. (Union Pacific Utah Division Employee Timetable No. 48, dated September 16, 1973; not shown in No. 47, dated May 1, 1972)
October 9, 1973
There was a wreck involving a southbound freight train, on the curve in Draper, Utah. Motive power on the train was SD40-2 3190 in lead position, with the following units trailing: SD24B booster units UP 438B, 428B, 407B, 402B, and SD24 cab unit 424. (Extra 2200 South, Issue 41, July-August 1973, page 13, reported by Don Strack)
"UP -- At 7:30 a.m. 10/9/73, at Draper, Utah, SE of Salt Lake City, a northbound consist of 3190 SD40; 438B, 428B, 407B, 402B, all SD24B's and 424 SD24, all derailed except 3190."
Union Pacific will install a test section of catenary at Farmington, Utah, and Emkay, Wyoming. Each of the two half-mile sections will be used to test the characteristics of electrical catenary under varying weather and operational conditions, including interference with communication and signal lines. The test are preparatory to a decision of whether or not Union Pacific will electrify its mainline between North Platte, Nebraska, and Salt Lake City to the south and Pocatello, Idaho, to the north. (Extra 2200 South, Issue 42, September-October 1973, page 12)
The Strawberry to Riverdale CTC territory was added in 1974 as a continuation of CTC control of the Riverdale By-Pass track, completed in September 1973. The addition of CTC through to Strawberry was an extension of the CTC territory that was already in place between Salt Lake City and Ogden at Bridge Junction, and the Riverdale By-Pass between Bridge Junction and East Riverdale.
UP began using its eight unique SD40X locomotives, numbered UP 3040-3047, on the Atlantic City, Wyoming, to Geneva, Utah, iron ore unit train for U. S. Steel. The eight units replaced similar sets of SD24s and SD24Bs. (Extra 2200 South, Issue 43, November-December 1973, page 12, reported by Don Strack)
February 18, 1974
Union Pacific announced plans to demolish the wooden depot building at Cache Junction. The 1300 square-foot building was to be replaced by a easy-to-heat metal trailer. The adjacent cafe had received a notice that its lease was to expire on April 1, 1974. (Deseret News, February 18, 1974)
Union Pacific completed expansion of Salt Lake City diesel shop, including construction of the new locomotive servicing facility. Construction was begun in March 1973. (Union Pacific news release, dated March 27, 1973) The construction of the locomotive servicing facility and the "one-spot" car repair facility required removal of the old rip track and old coach yard.
The following comes from Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
Aspen Tunnel: A Report -- Sometime near the end of 1975, construction crews will complete renovation of the Aspen Tunnel giving Union Pacific Railroad two broad passageways through the rugged western Wyoming terrain. Finished originally in 1901, the mile long tunnel has been a bottleneck for oversize loads in recent years.
The $6 million effort calls for enlarging the bore by dropping the floor five feet, a move that will enable the tunnel to accommodate high and wide loads. This action will simultaneously make room for overhead wires if the line through the area is electrified. In the course of construction, new 133 pound continuous welded rail and a new drainage system will be installed and repairs made to the existing tunnel lining.
Located in Wyoming's Wasatch Mountains just east of Evanston, the Aspen Tunnel rests on Union Pacific's double track mainline. During the rebuilding operation, traffic is being routed through the companion Altamont Tunnel, which has for years accommodated loads too high or wide for the Aspen Tunnel.
Track was removed from the 5,941 foot tunnel in July in preparation for excavation work that has already begun at both the east and west portals. Work on the portals of the tunnel will be completed first as a precaution against damage during the remainder of the construction period. And at these locations, the old concrete floor and part of the walls have been removed and a new floor and walls poured.
Excavation and clearing operations will proceed from both portals to the center of the tunnel. To lower the top of the rail five feet, nine feet of concrete and natural tunnel floor material is being removed. The old concrete floor, varying in thickness from two to eight feet, is being blasted away in 10 foot sections. As the supporting floor and walls are removed, the remaining tunnel lining is being held in place with horizontal struts and underpins.
Except for problem areas such as a point near the east end of the tunnel, old flooring and walls will be removed completely before new walls and floor are poured with work beginning at the center and moving to both ends.
The 23,000 cubic yards of concrete estimated to complete the project will be mixed at a batch plant situated on the hill through which the tunnel courses. A 12 inch shaft, 340 feet deep, was drilled through the hill piercing the tunnel lining just east of the center point. Inside the vertical shaft are an eight inch steel casing (through which concrete will be pumped into the tunnel), a two inch water pipe, and a pair of communication wires.
To secure the quantities of water needed, a water well was drilled adjacent to the batch plant. Using geological maps maintained by the original construction crews three-quarters of a century earlier, engineers were able to accurately predict and locate water at a depth of 500 feet (100 feet below the base of the tunnel) in a layer of fractured sandstone. The amazingly accurate geological information recorded from 1899 to 1901 is proving to be valuable as it details the materials and formations the excavation will encounter, and it gives indications of water levels, locations of gas formations and a geological blueprint of the area through which the tunnel passes.
Outside of the tunnel proper, earthmoving machines are at work broadening the approaches to the tunnel. Some 364,000 yards of fill will be moved at the east approach alone.
The first parts of the Aspen Tunnel were dug in 1899 to shorten the mainline through the area by 10 miles and reduce the grade. Work on the tunnel itself was completed in 1901, but it was 1914 before the concrete lining of the tunnel was applied.
During the course of construction, the tunnel claimed eight lives. Two men were killed in August, 1900, when a heavy slab of shale fell on them from the roof. A month later, two more men died when their drill struck a stick of dynamite that had not detonated. In December, 1900, a gas explosion resulted in the death of four men. Today automatic monitors continuously check the tunnel for a build-up of gas.
Approximately 115,850 cubic yards of material was excavated from the tunnel proper in the original excavation. In 1899, when the digging began, four tunnel headings were opened simultaneously-one each from the east and west ends and two more in a vertical shaft that had been sunk near what was to be the center of the tunnel.
Work on the tunnel is being conducted by an outside contractor working under the supervision of Union Pacific resident engineer Dave Monson. The excavation is proceeding 24 hours a day, six days a week. And the tunnel will be heated so that work can continue through the winter season. (Info magazine, Volume 6, Number 11, October 1974, pages 6-10)
The TOFC piggyback ramp at Salt Lake City was of the drive-on type until 1975, when they received their first "Piggy-Packer."
February 6, 1975
Cache Junction was closed as an agency station; business referred to the agent at Logan. (Union Pacific notification letter attached to depot door, dated December 24, 1974, courtesy of Dave England)
The following comes from the April 1975 (Volume 7, Number 5) issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine, pages 16-17:
Old Salt Lake Route Dedicated -- A 70-year-old oversight was rectified Jan. 30 when the State of Nevada and Union Pacific commemorated the completion of the line that linked Salt Lake City and Los Angeles - and along the way gave birth to Las Vegas. The occasion was the dedication of Nevada Historical Marker No. 195 near the point 28 miles south of Las Vegas where in 1905 the last spike of San Pedro, Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad was driven. "The Salt Lake Route" as SPLA&SL was called, made up what now is most of the South Central district.
This time there was considerably more ceremony than was evident at the actual event. Some 60 participants, reporters and special guests, including Old- and Junior Old Timers and auxiliaries' representatives and several retirees with service from the early 1900s came from Vegas aboard a short special train. UP's first female engineer-trainee, Bonnie Leake, was at the throttle. A hundred or more drove out.
Harold Brandt, South Central district general manager, delivered the principal address. He told the assembly of the impact railroading had on the region and compared railroading in 1905 with that of today. Leo Maskill, California division superintendent, welcomed the group and after the pledge to the flag by Warren Neustrom, GTA Las Vegas, and the invocation by The Rev. Jerome Blankinship turned the program over to Dr. Ralph Roske.
President of the Southern Nevada Historical Society, Roske sketched the early history of "The Salt Lake Route", introduced guests and displayed a one-inch replica gold spike that had been furnished in 1905 by Mrs. Ralph E. Wells, wife of the road's first general manager. William Swackhamer, Nevada secretary of state, read a proclamation from Gov. Mike O'Callaghan declaring the date to be "Union Pacific Day".
The marker was unveiled by Wilbur E. Wieprecht, Nevada State Parks System, and Jack Parvin, Nevada Department of Highways. With a Nevada outline shape, the 10-foot tall marker's plaque reads:
THE LAST SPIKE
"This site is near where workers drove the last spike which completed the railroad between Salt Lake City, Utah and Los Angeles, California. It was driven January 30, 1905. This was the last 'transcontinental' line to Southern California and one of the last lines built to the Pacific Coast. There was no formal celebration at the time of the last spike. The men on the spot gave some recognition to the event.
"Las Vegas owes its existence to the railroad then known as the San Pedro, Los Angeles and Salt Lake Railroad, as the men in charge laid out the town and established a division point there, taking advantage of a good supply of water."
(The event was also reported in the March 1975 issue of Pacific News magazine, page 9, with photo)
May 16, 1975
The Utah Public Service Commission approved Union Pacific's request to close the agency station at Echo. (Utah PSC case 7133)
The following comes from Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
The Name Without A Town -- 70 years ago, when the old Salt Lake Route - now Union Pacific - was pushing track toward Los Angeles, it was simply siding No. 33 where trains could pass. It was 24 railroad miles south of Las Vegas, and aside from the tracks, there wasn't much there but a boxcar with office space in it for Erie L. Parker, telegrapher.
When the railroad was near completion late in 1904, employees were invited to submit station names for these sidings - 62 of them about five miles apart between Caliente and Daggett - so that a timetable could be printed.
Parker put his name in the suggestion box.
That was the last he thought about it until the booklet appeared and there was "Erie."
After diesels displaced steam locomotives and pushbutton railroading afforded by CTC routed the telegraph, some of these sidings were not needed and were removed. Erie still is there, though, and until a few weeks ago, a sign declaring it to be so remained on its post in the desert landscape.
These free-standing boards have been replaced with signs on the CTC instrument houses.
The elder Parker's grandson, Robert L. "Bob" Parker, quality control supervisor for Southwest Gas Corp., Las Vegas, recently noticed the old sign was gone, felt it should have been preserved and told Union Pacific so.
UP section man at Sloan, Rocklyn D. Roofe, had felt the same way about the old sign when it was removed three weeks ago and stored it until section foreman L.D. Barnum learned of Parker's interest in the relic.
At an informal presentation, it was handed to Parker by UP's Warren Neustrom, general traffic agent, and Tom Wingstad, trainmaster in charge of the Las Vegas-Yermo territory.
Parker has said that he will pass it along to his grandmother, Erie's widow, who lives at Phoenix.
Both Mrs. Parker and her husband were telegraph operators. They moved to Los Angeles in 1912 where he became a locomotive engineer on Southern Pacific, running between Los Angeles and Yuma for 35 years.
Mrs. Parker's sister, Mrs. Georgie Griffeths, Upland, California, also lived at Erie where her husband was the section foreman. (By Al Krieg, Info magazine, Volume 7, Number 7, July 1975, page 22)
August 4, 1975
UP withdrew its application to merge CRI&P due to the financial condition of the company. The federal ICC approved the UP-CRI&P merger on November 8, 1974, but due to conditions imposed by the ICC to satisfy the objections of D&RGW and SP, UP withdrew its application.
October 15-19, 1975
The American Freedom Train came to Salt Lake City from Billings, Montana, by way of Butte and UP's Montana Subdivision. It was displayed in Salt Lake City (15th) and at Ogden (19th) before heading back north via UP to Boise, Idaho.
The U.S. Postal Service moved its Parcel Post sorting facility to its new main post office and new sorting facility at 2100 South and Redwood Road, vacating the Post Office Annex building south of Union Pacific's Salt Lake City depot. (Deseret News, December 17, 1975) (The United States Post Office Department became the United States Postal Service in August 1970) (USPS had put out bids for the new main post office and sorting facility in August 1969, with the planned facility encompassing 272,000 square feet, with a projected cost of $8.6 million; see Deseret News, June 4, 1968)
The Post Office Annex , or Postal Annex Building, was renovated and became UP's South-Central District offices.
The following comes from Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
Aspen Tunnel Open Again -- When "Scotty" Durrant, general manager-Eastern District, piloted the 71car SLX-8 through the Aspen Tunnel on December 9, 1975, his was the first train through in 18 months.
The Aspen Tunnel has been the focal point of construction efforts over the past year and one-half that saw $6,000,000 invested in an operation to enlarge its bore. Now completed, it will compliment the companion Altamont Tunnel and provide a second passageway through the Wasatch Range capable of accommodating oversize loads.
A good deal of fanfare accompanied the opening. With Durrant in the right hand seat, engineer S. O. "Sod" Dean was free to bring forth a few strains of "We're a Great Big Rolling Railroad" on his harmonica accompanied by conductor Wilcox, brakeman Layman, and fireman Hicks as the train rolled through the tunnel.
On hand for the reopening of the tunnel were Eugene Rigdon, trainmaster, Lynn Jensen, Wyoming division engineer, Dave Monson, project engineer, and Durrant. (Info magazine, Volume 8, Number 2, January 1976, pages 8-9)
March 19, 1976
"When part of the mountain fell into a valley at about 7 a.m. on March 19 at Uintah, Utah, it buried both east and westbound main lines. In at least one area, though, fortune was on the side of UP. It occurred near a place where a contractor was working with large earth moving equipment. Using this equipment to clear the way, the westbound main was back in service by 12:30 p.m. The eastbound line opened to traffic again by 11:30 that same night." (Info magazine, Volume 8, Number 6, May 1976, page 23)
The following comes from Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
Big Slide -- When part of the mountain fell into a valley at about 7 a.m. on March 19 at Uintah, Utah, it buried both east and westbound main lines. In at least one area, though, fortune was on the side of UP. It occurred near a place where a contractor was working with large earth moving equipment. Using this equipment to clear the way, the westbound main was back in service by 12:30 p.m. The eastbound line opened to traffic again by 11:30 that same night. (Info magazine, Volume 8, Number 6, May 1976, page 23)
Robert E. Irion was named as General Superintendent of Union Pacific's South-Central District. He replaced Harold H. Brandt who was promoted to General Superintendent of the railroad's Eastern District. Mr. Irion started with UP as a agent-telegrapher at Baileyville, Kansas in 1941. He was promoted to Trainmaster at Grand Island, Nebraska in 1959, then to Superintendent of the Kansas Division in 1964, then Assistant Superintendent of the Utah Division in 1966, then Superintendent of the Wyoming Division in 1972, then General Superintendent of the Northwest District in 1975. (Deseret News, November 19, 1976)
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon portions of the Ironton Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 77-400-06)
During late 1977 Union Pacific received ICC approval to abandon the loop track at Cedar City. With the abandonment and removal of the loop track, the Cedar City depot building was sold to a local developer. Passenger service to Cedar City ended in 1960, but UP still provided freight service to Cedar City, and would move its team track and freight tracks north to Third West street. (Salt Lake Tribune, July 23, 1977, "by the end of the year")
UP sold the Cedar City depot and surrounding property "last fall." The new owners removed the rail and ties during February 1978. (The St. George Daily Spectrum, February 26, 1978)
Union Pacific moved into the newly renovated, former Post Office Annex building, south of the Salt Lake City depot. With this move, the railroad vacated leased office space at 10 South Main Street in downtown Salt Lake. (UP letter to Julian Caviler, dated October 28, 1976) The downtown location was in the "Union Pacific Building", formerly called the "Oregon Short Line Building", which the OSL had occupied since 1901. The original OSL offices on West Temple Street in Salt Lake City had burned completely in September 1901. (interview with C. R. Rockwell, UP public relations representative, circa 1978)
June 6, 1977
At a hearing to be held on June 6, 1977, Union Pacific requested authority from the Utah Public Service Commission to discontinue Arsenal as an agency station. Arsenal was on the former Bamberger line adjacent to Hill Air Force Base, and the former Ogden Arsenal, and served as the agency for railroad business to and from Hill AFB. (Salt Lake Tribune, May 25, 1977)
June 21, 1977
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Arsenal, which Union Pacific had purchased from the Bamberger Railroad in 1959. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 77-400-01)
June 21, 1977
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon the stockyards at Henefer. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 77-400-03)
August 19, 1977
A westbound freight train carrying hogs to Los Angeles, collided at Lakepoint with a set of two locomotives and a caboose that had gotten away from Warner, Utah.
UP 3336, 3375, and 3353, along with UP 3071 and 3146, were all involved in a wreck at Lakepoint , Utah, on August 19, 1977. UP 3336, 3375, and 3353 were the power on the westbound CLS, when it was hit head-on by a light set of road power, with caboose, that were rolling east as a runaway that started at Warner. The runaway power was UP 3071 and UP 3146, along with UP caboose 25652. UP 3071, 3146, and 3336 were destroyed, along with the caboose. UP 3375 and 3353 were sent to Omaha for repair. Estimated loss of $1.3 million to company property was $1.3 million, along with $700,000 loss to cargo (hogs). (CTC Board, September 1977, page 7)
UP 3353 and 3375 were returned to service after repairs at Omaha. (Pacific News, October 1977, page 20)
A later report shows that the three destroyed units (UP 3071, 3146, 3336) were not scrapped on site, but were instead sent to Omaha in gondolas for damage assessment and possible removal of usable parts. (Pacific News, November 1977, page 17)
October 29, 1977
Utah Department of Transportation invited bids to relocate the Salt Lake Garfield and Western to a route adjacent to the UP and WP between 9th West and approximately 40th West. This would move the SLG&W tracks away from the proposed alignment of Interstate 80. (Salt Lake Tribune, October 29, 1977)
The following comes from Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
W.I.P. - Newest On Line Station -- The newest station on the UP system was officially dedicated recently just outside Ogden, Utah.
Beneath a bright new sign which designates the station as "WIP," for Weber Industrial Park, railroad and Weber County officials shared in a traditional groundbreaking ceremony, using a plated and engraved shovel presented by UP traffic manager Bill Whalen to the Weber County Industrial Development Bureau for use in future groundbreakings for new industry in the industrial park.
The 475-acre industrial area was established by Weber County to attract new industry into the area. Upland Industries and UP railroad personnel worked closely with the county from initial planning sessions right through to final establishment of the park.
Buildings for one industry have been completed and three others are now under construction in the industrial park, as are roads, curb and gutters, water sewer lines, storm drains and other facilities. Spot tracks will be built as needed to serve industries that will require rail transportation. Officials expect traffic will eventually amount to 1,000 or more cars from industries in the park. (Info magazine, Volume 6, Number 1, December 1977, page 24)
May 14, 1978
Union Pacific (LA&SL) received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon the stockyards at Milford. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 78-400-07)
August 21, 1978
Union Pacific (LA&SL) received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon the Eureka Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 78-400-04)
During mid October 1978, Union Pacific operated its 1944-built 4-8-4 steam locomotive, numbered UP 8444, from Cheyenne to Salt Lake City. The occasion was UP's donating Ogden Union Station to the City of Ogden. A special dedication ceremony was held in Ogden on October 21, 1978, and the locomotive returned to Cheyenne. The actual sale of Ogden Union Station to Ogden City took place in early 1977, with renovation by the city taking place over the following time period prior to the October 1978 dedication.
UP's "Project K" was a proposal for a 200 mile rail line from the coal rich Kaiparowits Plateau in southern Utah, to the UP mainline in southwestern Utah. A proposed northern route was from the UP at Cedar City, south into Arizona, then northeast to the Plateau. Estimated cost ranges from $316.7 Million to 349.8 Million and would be the largest project of its type in the U.S. in fifty years. Sponsor for the coal field development was Southern Utah Coal Resource Group, a consortium of coal, utility, and transportation companies. To meet the proposed schedule, construction on the railroad portion must start early in 1983. Development was being sought for three major reasons: first, in anticipation of coal fired power plants in Southern California, replacing oil and natural gas installations that depend on energy resources that were becoming scarce; second, for possible exports to Japan; and third, to ease pressures on existing Utah, Colorado, and Wyoming resources. (Pacific News, March 1979, page 17)
The following comes from the April 1979 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 11, Number 4, April 1979, page 4):
A new LeTourneau straddle crane was to be delivered to the Los Angeles intermodal terminal early in April. The crane, purchased for $430,200, brings to four the number of overhead cranes in use in the terminal, plus one piggy packer. The additional crane is needed to handle the steady increase of trailer traffic in and out of Los Angeles. R. W. Wright, general manager-trailer-container operations, said the LeTourneau crane is the first of its type purchased by UP. It operates with electric motors, rather than a hydraulic system. Wright said the electric motor crane is believed to be more efficient and dependable.
Refrigerator trailers owned by the Pacific Northwest Perishable Shippers Association began moving on the Union Pacific during March. The association has brought more than 200 trailers to use between the Pacific Northwest, Chicago, St. Louis and Memphis. The eastbound trailers carry frozen fish, frozen foods and perishable fruits and vegetables. Westbound, they carry merchandise traffic. The concept of shipper association-owned refrigerator trailers is new, and it is expected to provide railroads a greater share of the perishable traffic. In addition, since there is round-trip traffic arranged for the trailers, there is full utilization of the equipment.
The following comes from the May 1979 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, Volume 11, Number 5, May 1979, pages 4 and 5):
Union Pacific will spend a record $153 million to purchase 200 new locomotives that will arrive later this year and in early 1980. "We simply need more power to handle the rapid expansion of our freight business," said John C. Kenefick, president of the railroad. "Last winter's severe weather put a tight squeeze on our existing fleet and we don't want that to happen again."
The 200 locomotives represent the second largest number purchased since the railroad converted to diesel power in the early 1950s. They include 160 EMD models SD40-2 and 40 GE models C30-7. Deliveries begin in September and end in March of 1980.
The new locomotives, each with 3,000 horsepower, will range in price from $726,000 to $811,000 each. This order comes not long after other large purchases of locomotives. In 1977, UP purchased 90 locomotives. In 1978, it added 100 and had already placed orders for 150 locomotives to be delivered this year. This is an investment of $373 million for 540 locomotives in this four-year period.
Omaha's new freight car truck shop is another step toward centralizing of the railroad's specialized repair facilities. The shop is supplying the entire railroad with rebuilt freight car trucks. "We're doing more work, and we're doing a better job," said a Mechanical Department spokesman. By centralizing the work, UP is able to use assembly line procedures and highly trained employees to improve efficiency.
Grain hauling records set in 1978 are already being broken in 1979. In 1978, UP moved more than 11 million tons of grain, a 22 per cent increase over the year before. So far this year, UP has hauled 25 per cent more grain than a year ago. During the last week in April, UP increased carloadings of corn by 34 per cent, wheat by 61 per cent and all other grains by 50 per cent over 1978.
Union Pacific and other California railroads began an Operation Lifesaver program in that state on April 17, 1979. The grade crossing safety information campaign was kicked off in Sacramento at the Golden West Safety Congress.
Union Pacific is upgrading more branch lines in Nebraska. -- Besides the work which has been underway since last year on the North Platte Branch, the company has ordered extensive improvements on two other branches; Cedar Rapids and Albion.
More than 50 men working on the Cedar Rapids Branch are renewing ballast with a "sledding" machine which lifts up track and grades away old ballast At the same time, old ties are removed. Following completion of sledding, a gang of more than 100 track-laying employees will move into the area and begin replacing ties and 80-pound rail with 133-pound rail. The heavier rail will accommodate the bigger loads expected on these branches. In addition to the 45-mile project between Spalding and Genoa, 13 miles of track relaying will be done from Genoa to St Edward on the Albion Branch.
March 20, 1980
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon the stockyards at Springville. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 80-400-01)
Daily carloadings were down 8 percent in May 1980, compared to May 1979; 2,861 cars for 1980 compared to 3,093 for 1979. The number of trains per week through North Platte fell 21 percent, with 345 trains eastbound and westbound in 1980, compared to 434 in 1979. The tonnage moving through North Platte on June 1, 1980 compared to June 1, 1979 was down 25 percent, with 254,462 tons in 46 trains in 1980 and 338,153 in 61 trains in 1979. Also on June 1, 1980 there were 176 serviceable locomotives in storage and 2,294 cars in storage, including 341 DF boxcars and 430 flatcars. (Union Pacific INFO magazine, June 1980, page 13)
February 16, 1981
Union Pacific operated the last train of iron ore from Iron Mountain in Utah, to the Colorado Fuel & Iron plant in Pueblo, Colorado. (source not recorded)
UP demolished the Milford depot. The following comes from Arden Fowles, Milford City Secretary:
The Beaver County News followed the demolition of the Milford Depot during the first week of June 1981. The demolition was started on the 2nd of June and took just a few days to complete. The newspaper has a page of demolition photos in its June 18th issue. (Arden Fowles, Milford City, email dated January 16, 2003)
The following comes from John Bromley, Director of the Union Pacific Museum, Council Bluffs, Iowa:
The old Milford depot was torn down in 1981 and replaced with a new "Spanish style" depot amid great ceremony. The towns people had raised hell about their beloved station being razed and the railroad went to extensive effort to smooth feathers with a modern replacement. I think it was the last "new" depot for UP, although basically it was a yard office. I was there as the regional PR representative for UP the ribbon-cutting on October 1, 1982. (John Bromley, Trainorders.com, March 15, 2008; with photo of new depot)
The following comes from the July-August 1981 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine (Info magazine, July-August 1981, pages 2-3):
Brady Depot -- The Brady, Nebraska, depot, measuring 30 feet by 50 feet, was moved to North Platte in 1976, and in 1981, moved again to the Western Heritage Museum.
Valmy Coal Train -- A new unit coal train to the North Valmy Generating Station, began moving on July 2, 1981. Coal was loaded at Sharp, on the Utah Subdivision. The trains were made up of 65 cars, and UP delivered three trains per week to maintain a 90-day supply.
Wood Products By TOFC -- Union Pacific began tests moving wood products by trailer-on-flat-car (TOFC) in February and May 1980, as a return eastbound move for empty westbound flatbed trailers. The tests were for various tie-down methods that would ensure no damage to the plywood and dimensional lumber wood products. Regular shipments from Boise-Cascade in Emmett, Idaho, began in November 1980. The shipments also came from LaGrande, Oregon, where trailers trucked from the mill in Elgin, Oregon, were loaded on to flat cars. Shipments from both mills were bound for the Boise-Cascade distribution center in Denver, Colorado.
Shipments of particle board to Chicago began in April 1981 from the Boise-Cascade plant in Baum (near LaGrande), Oregon, and from the Willamette Industries plant in Albany, Oregon. Boise-Cascade was shipping two trailers per week.
Helper Locomotives -- Union Pacific began using helper locomotives regularly between Yermo and Riverside, California, in April 1981.
Union Pacific tore down the Provo "Joint Shop Facility" that was shared with Utah Railway. The building was a large two-track steel structure with numerous windows, an interior overhead crane, and large jacks that could raise a locomotive. It was the last remaining structure of the former joint locomotive facility owned by UP and Utah Railway that had included a roundhouse, turntable and coaling station, all built in 1917. The backshop, 75 feet by 240 feet, was built in 1920, with a formal completion date of January 25, 1921.
September 16, 1981
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon the stockyards at Wahsatch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 81-400-01)
The new Yermo yard was placed into service in September 1981, at a reported cost of $9.3 million. (UP INFO magazine, January 1981, page 2; October 1981, page 5)
"What year did we go from a 500 mile inspection to the 1000 mile?"
The FRA rule that called for 500-mile inspections was 49 CFR 232.12(b).
According to a very long Federal Register web page from September 1994, the rule was changed in 1982 to allow 1000-mile inspections. "In the 1982 revisions to the power brake rules, FRA extended the distance between these inspections from 500 miles to 1,000 miles."
Here is the rule as it currently reads...
"Trains must receive an intermediate inspection at points not more than 1,000 miles apart. It is the carriers responsibility to designate the points where the 1,000 mile inspection will be made and provide this information to FRA personnel upon request. All mileage accumulated from the point of the initial terminal air brake test will count toward the 1,000-mile requirements in Section 232.12(b). It should be noted that mileage accrued in Canada and Mexico will count toward the 1,000-mile requirements. When cars are received in interchange, the receiving railroad is responsible for knowing the distance that all of the cars have traveled since their last inspection."
March 26, 1982
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon 2.54 miles of tracks in Weber County. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 82-400-02)
The following comes from the August 1982 issue of Union Pacific's INFO magazine:
UP donates depot. -- LaSalle, Colorado, celebrated July 31, as Union Pacific Railroad officially donated its 72-year-old depot to the city. LaSalle has set aside more than $50,000 and enlisted dozens of volunteers to renovate the depot for use as a community center and museum.
Merger argued. -- Oral arguments in the merger of Union Pacific, Missouri Pacific and Western Pacific were made July 22 before the Interstate Commerce Commission. During the day-long session, final arguments in support and opposition of the merger were presented by 21 parties representing the merger partners, other railroads, states, the Departments of Transportation and Justice and other interested individuals and organizations.
The oral arguments concluded the application process that began on September 15, 1980. The ICC will rule on the UP/MP/WP merger on or before October 20, 1982.
September 7, 1982
The following comes from the September 1982 issue of INFO magazine, page 4:
As of September 7, a total of 8,326 cars were in storage across the system. These included 1,119 plain boxcars (112 40-foot and 1,007 50-foot double-door plain boxcars), 1,272 DF cars, 1,144 UPFE mechanical refrigerator cars, 1,640 open top hoppers, 419 small covered hoppers, 2,377 large covered hoppers, 292 plain flatcars and 63 specially equipped flatcars. This is 1,870 more cars than were stored as of August 9.
As of September 10, 632 freight locomotives were stored across the system, 546 serviceable and 86 unserviceable. That is 19 fewer than were stored as of August 9, when 569 were stored serviceable and 86 were waiting for repair.
The diesel fuel consumption rate for July was 1.8830 gallons per thousand gross ton miles, 1.4 percent above the July, 1981, rate.
September 7, 1982
Union Pacific (OSL) received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Tremonton, on the Malad Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 82-400-06)
January 1, 1983
Union Pacific control of Western Pacific Railroad took effect. UP had received federal ICC approval for its control of WP and MP on December 22, 1982.
(From here on, this chronological history includes all references to events and actions on former Western Pacific tracks and locations in Utah.)
In 1983, after their recent merger, and with the common ownership of both UP and WP lines west of Salt Lake City, the need no longer existed for WP-UP Junction at 1100 West in Salt Lake City. The junction had been put in place in 1967 as part of the 15 miles of joint operations between Salt Lake City and Smelter (15 miles to the west), to allow WP trains to crossover to WP-owned tracks before the ownership changed at the Jordan River. WP-UP Junction was removed and the double crossover was moved several miles west to Orange Street, about a mile west of Redwood Road.
Union Pacific completed the installation of Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) on the Provo Subdivision south from Provo to Lynndyl. (Union Pacific press release dated September 8, 1982)
"UP announced that work is well under way on installation of a Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) system on UP's coal line from Provo south to Lynndyl. The 87-mile connection from Provo to UP's main line at Lynndyl will then have an electronic signal system similar to the system already in use on the Ogden-Salt Lake City- Los Angeles main line. Because of the remote location of much of the Provo line, solar energy will be used to power many of the signals where commercial electricity isn't available. The CTC system is expected to be operational early in 1983. The $6.1 million CTC system will give the Provo line extra capacity and will increase train operating flexibility by providing remote control of switches and trackside signals from a CTC panel to be located in the Salt Lake City dispatching center."
The new CTC went into service in time for the Union Pacific employee timetable No. 7, dated June 12, 1983.
July 21, 1983
Union Pacific received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to abandon the stockyards at Wanship, on the Park City Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 83-400-03)
Union Pacific operated the first regularly scheduled doublestack train for American President Lines, from Los Angeles to Chicago. The train passed through Salt Lake City on its first eastbound trip on or about April 16, 1984.
UP removed the short test installations of catenary at Farmington, Utah, and Emkay, Wyoming. These had been installed during the early 1970s to test the two most feasible designs of catenary for electrified locomotive operations. (Extra 2200 South, Issue 81, July-August-September 1984, page 15)
June 11, 1984
Union Pacific (LA&SL) received ICC approval to abandon the Fillmore Branch from Delta (Mile Post 0.5) to Fillmore (Mile Post 32.26).
UP Fillmore (Utah) branch approved for abandonment June 1984. 32 miles long; Delta to Fillmore, Utah; sold to Gammel and Ollendick, scrapper. (Pacific News, August 1985, page 22)
October 7, 1984
Union Pacific's first official cabooseless train left westbound out of Salt Lake, City, Utah. The train was a double-stack container train for American President, Lines. The substitution of an end-of-train device for the caboose was the beginning of the end of caboose operations on UP. Within a week, cabooseless operations began in all directions from Salt Lake City, and within a month, cabooseless operations began in all directions from Cheyenne. Cabooses were required on trains in the Northwest until September 1985, when the State of Oregon allowed the operation of cabooseless trains. Down on the former Missouri Pacific lines in Texas, cabooses were required on all trains until November 1989. There were still 740 cabooses in use by Union Pacific when that first cabooseless doublestack train went west out of Salt Lake City.
Union Pacific placed a "Piggy-Packer" in service at the intermodal ramp in Salt Lake City. The new machine included weigh-in-motion capability. Trailer-On-Flat-Car (TOFC) traffic for UP at Salt Lake City had doubled since 1982. (Pacific RailNews, Issue 257, April 1985, page 5, from Railway Age)
U.S. Steel's Iron Mountain mine on UP's Cedar City/Iron Mountain Branch was closed in 1983, along with the Atlantic City, Wyoming, mine. U.S. Steel's Geneva Works were furnished with taconite from Minnesota. The Iron Mountain mine reopened in spring 1985 to furnish the new Geneva Works, with about two unit trains running per week. (CTC Board, July 1985, page 14)
April 21, 1985
The former Union Pacific depot in Park City was heavily damaged by an arson-set fire. (Deseret News, April 22, 1985)
May 1, 1985
Union Pacific closed it sales office in Salt Lake City. The office was located in the north end of the UP depot at 400 West South Temple. (Deseret News, April 2, 1985)
October 22, 1985
Union Pacific and D&RGW exchange trackage rights on each others lines between Ogden and Salt Lake City (D&RGW operating on UP), and between Salt Lake City and Provo (UP operating on D&RGW). (CTC Board, December 1985, page 43, reported by Ryan Ballard)
At the same time, UP and D&RGW removed the angled crossing at Lakota Junction, near Orem, and replaced it with a switch that allowed UP trains direct access to the D&RGW mainline to Salt Lake City. (James Belmont, March 19, 2005 email to Trainorders.com)
(Read more about the Lakota Crossing; on the D&RGW 1908-1988 page)
Mines in Iron Mountain region were independent. By summer 1984 all machinery at the mines had been sold to various gold mines developing in Nevada. In January 1985 UP was considering total abandonment of the 31-mile Cedar City Branch, along with the connecting 14-mile Iron Mountain Branch. In April 1985, just after UP had informed U.S. Steel of its intention to abandon the branches, U.S. Steel let UP know that they were considering reopening the mines to furnish ore to the Geneva Works. By June 1985, one mine had reopened and was furnishing ore to the Geneva Works. Mine owned and operated by Gilbert Construction Co. of Cedar City, Utah. Trains being operated were the SUW (Steel Unit West) empties and the SUE (Steel Unit East) loads; on a one train per week schedule. A summary of operations included information that Gilbert Construction Company (of Cedar City, Utah) was the new operator of the Iron Mountain iron mines, plus operational notes that Union Pacific picked up loaded iron ore cars on Thursdays at 4 p.m. The main iron mine was at Comstock. Other iron ore loading facilities were at Iron Springs, Deseret, Mound, and Iron Mountain. (CTC Board, November 1985, pages 49-50)
Union Pacific announced that all customers along the Wyoming-Ogden main line in Utah, together with customers on the Park City Branch and Ontario Branch, will be served by a toll-free customer service number in Salt Lake City. The stations served include Ogden, Baskin, Castle Rock, Devils Slide, Echo, Emory, Henefer, Morgan, Peterson, Strawberry and Uintah on the main line and Calgas, Coalville, Keetley Junction, Park City, Wanship, and Phoston on the branches. (Union Pacific news release, dated January 1, 1986)
January 13, 1986
Union Pacific (OSL) received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Logan, on the Cache Valley Branch. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 85-400-02)
January 13, 1986
Union Pacific (OSL) received Utah Public Utilities Commission approval to close the agency at Brigham City. (Public Service Commission of Utah, case 85-400-02)
April 29, 1986
The Utah Division was eliminated. The new Western Region covered everything west of Green River, Wyoming, and was made up of the new California Division, Idaho Division, and Oregon Division.
May 5, 1986
Grant tower in Salt Lake City was closed. The facility controlled the crossing of D&RGW's double track mainline between Roper (Salt Lake City) and Ogden, and UP's ex LA&SL mainline, and WP's line to Oakland. There were at times up to 80 movements per day through the tower trackage. Control was taken over by two screens on the D&RGW dispatcher's station in Denver. (CTC Board, May 1986, page 12)
(See CTC Board, June 1986, page 6, for information about UP's battle against the Great Salt Lake during the spring of 1986.)
December 29, 1987
The Des Chutes Railroad in Oregon and the Oregon-Washington Railroad & Navigation Company were both merged into the Oregon Short Line Railroad.
December 30, 1987
The Oregon Short Line Railroad was merged into the Union Pacific Railroad.
December 31, 1987
The Los Angeles & Salt Lake Railroad was merged into the Union Pacific Railroad. The one day delay was necessary because the LA&SL was owned by both the OSL and the Union Pacific. The OSL was merged into the Union Pacific on December 30. Also on December 31, the Spokane International Railroad was merged into the Union Pacific Railroad.
June 1, 1989
The new Harriman Dispatching Center in Omaha began operations by taking control of the Seattle to Hinkle portion of the railroad. Control of the remaining parts was to take place over the following 15 months. (Pacific RailNews, Issue 308, July 1989, page 7)
The following was part of the online timeline at UP150.com, for Union Pacific's 150-year anniversary, celebrated throughout the summer of 2012:
Harriman Dispatching Center Opens -- Originally a freight depot, and the site where Union Pacific was sold out of receivership in 1897, the Harriman Center is the heart of train operations. Each day, it coordinates movement of more than 800 trains over more than 32,000 route miles. More than 750 people are employed at the facility, including those in “The Bunker” who monitor every switch and signal track on UP’s lines. The 1989 opening effectively centralized operations for the railroad, bringing together 10 regional dispatching centers from around the country.
July 27, 1989
The new Harriman Dispatching Center in Omaha was officially dedicated. (Pacific RailNews, Issue 311, October 1989, page 13)
After the Harriman Center opened in mid 1989, the Salt Lake City dispatching center was closed. The building was located just to the north of UP's passenger station, on the southwest corner of North Temple street and 400 West. The entire LA&SL, that part of Union Pacific between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles, including all of the LA basin, was dispatched from Salt Lake City, until June 1989 when the new Harriman Center opened in Omaha.
October 18, 1989
Union Pacific donated its Salt Lake City depot to the State of Utah, at a ceremony and dinner attended by Michael Walsh, Union Pacific president; Drew Lewis, Union Pacific chairman, and Utah governor, Norm H. Bangerter. (Deseret News, October 19, 1989)
December 31, 1992
ICC approved UTA's acquisition of UP's Provo Sub between 900 South in Salt Lake City, and Mount, at the line between Salt Lake County and Utah County. (ICC Finance Docket 32186)
March 31, 1993
Union Pacific sold a portion of its right-of-way between Salt Lake City and Provo to the Utah Transit Authority as part of its planned operation of light rail along the Wasatch Front. The actual trackage and railroad right-of-way involved includes the former Union Pacific route from 900 South in Salt Lake City south to the county line between Salt Lake County and Utah County. UTA also purchased the rights to first refusal on the UP line from the county line south to Lindon, Utah, in Utah County. Also included in the sale to UTA was the Dahl Spur, which runs west from the former UP tracks, under the Southern Pacific (former D&RGW) tracks and Interstate 15, to the west side of Midvale, at the former location of the abandoned smelter of the United States Smelting, Refining & Mining Company, later known as Sharon Steel Company. UTA acquired this trackage because of the existing access under the Interstate, saving them from having to fund such an underpass in the future. There was also some existing rail business at the end of the spur. To ensure continuous and seamless freight service to those customers, UTA negotiated an operating lease for its new rail property with Railtex Corporation, an operator of small, shortline railroads nationwide. The Railtex operating lease went into effect concurrent with the March 31, 1993 sale of the UP line to UTA. (Telephone conversation with Bruce Barnes at Utah Transit Authority, August 1994.)
UP set up a concrete tie facility in Ogden. Quoting Pacific RailNews, issue 356, July 1993, page 49:
A major manufacturer of concrete ties, CXT Inc. of Spokane, Washington, announced the signing of a six-year contract with UP. During this period, 50 percent of CXT's annual production will go to UP. Approximately one-third of this total will be used in the UP track expansion programs on the Marysville Subdivision in Kansas and Nebraska plus the Blue Mountain project in Oregon. CXT will establish a shipping depot in Ogden, Utah, where the concrete ties will be stockpiled for delivery.
August 3, 1995
UP and SP announced on August 3, 1995 that they intended to consolidate their operations and merge. In Utah, both Geneva Steel and Kennecott Utah Copper were concerned that the new rail-monopoly in the state would result in increased rates. Geneva shipped about 70 percent of its finished products by rail, using either UP or SP. UP has agreed to allow a second railroad to have access to serve companies that were once served by both railroads, but following the merger, would be only served by the new merged company. At the time of the proposed merger, SP operated 564 miles of route in Utah, with 300 employees, and UP operated 859 miles of track in Utah, with 1,500 employees. (Ogden Standard Examiner, August 21, 1995, p. 4A)
The following comes from the October 1995 issue of CTC Board, page 10:
The Octopus Gets Swallowed UP ... For avid followers of the SP, the unthinkable was announced on August 3, 1995 when the Union Pacific announced that it was going to acquire the Southern Pacific. Even as late as a year or two ago, such a union would have been unthinkable, but with the recent acquisition of the C&NW by the UP and the BN/SF merger approved recently, it seems anything is possible now.
The merger would save the two railroads approximately $500 million a year through reduced costs, much of which will come through reduced employee ranks. While about 20 percent larger in track miles than the SP, the UP has about 35 percent more employees than the SP. The UP announced that it will spend about $500 million upgrading the SP with new track and equipment.
Some of the areas where this money may be spent are replacing the double track on the Overland the SP has been pulling up in the last two years; Double-tracking the Sunset Route from Los Angeles to at least El Paso; expansion of the West Colton Yard and the closure of the UP yard at Yermo; putting in a connecting track from the eastbound SP to the southbound Santa Fe track at Colton; double-tracking the Tehachapis; and building a central locomotive repair shop somewhere in the Los Angeles area. It will be interesting to watch and see in what priority these things will come about with the UP.
The UP would achieve great savings in transit time by combining certain SP routes with the business they already have. The SP route from Portland to the San Francisco Bay Area and to Los Angeles is much shorter, likewise from Los Angeles to all points in Texas, and the SP's Overland Route from Ogden to the Bay Area is faster. The SP would benefit by combing UP trackage with its own between Los Angeles and Sierra Blanca, Texas for Dallas and Memphis traffic, and traffic rights the SP will receive from the BNSF merger between Texas and the Wyoming coal fields will certainly see stiff competition.
September 11, 1996
Union Pacific received federal Surface Transportation Board approval to control Southern Pacific Rail Corporation (formerly Rio Grande Industries), including its Southern Pacific and Denver & Rio Grande Western subsidiaries.