Utah Northern Railroad (1871-1878)

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Utah Northern Railroad existed from 1871 to 1878, when it was reorganized as Utah & Northern Railway. U&N was a UP-controlled company and became part of UP's roll-up in 1889 of its controlled companies in Utah and Idaho as the newly organized Oregon Short Line & Utah Northern Railway.

(Read more about the Utah & Northern Railway)

(Read more about Oregon Short Line & Utah Northern Railway)


(Much of the information presented here is based on research completed by George Pitchard.)

August 23, 1871
The Utah Northern Railway corporation was organized. (The History of Utah's Railroads, 1869-1883, by Clarence A. Reeder, Jr., PhD dissertation, June 1970, page 218 [hereafter: Reeder]; Athearn, p. 238)

August 25, 1871
On August 23rd, "the Utah Northern Railroad Company was organized at Logan city, Cache Co., with the following officers: John W. Young, President and General Superintendent; W. B. Preston, Vice President; Moses Thatcher, Secretary and Treasurer; Franklin D. Richards, Lorenzo Snow, Wm. B. Preston, Joseph Richardson, Legrand Lockwood, Wm. Maughan, 0. N. Liljenquist, Gin. Hyde, Sam'1. Roskelly, M. W. Merrill, Lorenzo H. Hatch, Hezekiah Thatcher and John W. Young, Directors. The road is to be built from some point on the Central Pacific Railroad, in Box Elder Co., probably at or near Willard city, to Soda Springs, and it will be a three feet track." (Deseret Evening News, August 25, 1871)

August 26, 1871
Ground was broken at Three Mile Creek (now called Perry), four miles south of Brigham City. Present were Brigham Young and James Camell, President of the Utah Division of the Central Pacific. The settlement at Three Mile Creek had been established by Mormon farmers in March 1853. (History of Box Elder County, by Lydia Walker Forsgren, 1937, page 30-31; page 273)

(OSL corporate history says that construction began at Brigham City on September 26.)

August 28, 1871
"Ground Broken for the Utah Northern Railroad."

Brigham City, Aug. 26.

"Editor News -- Ground was broken for the Utah Northern Railroad, this evening, by moonlight. The dedication prayer was offered by Lorenzo Snow. John W. Young broke ground, and a portion of the grade was begun and completed, by shovel, pick, plow and scraper, amid the firing of cannon and ringing of bells. A great number of people were present to witness the ceremony. The brass band and Professor Fishburn's choir were present." (Deseret Evening News, August 28, 1871)

September 1871
The work of grading the Utah Northern began during the first week of September 1871, at a connection with the Central Pacific just southwest of Three Mile Creek (now called Perry), four miles south of Brigham City. (Reeder, p. 222; History of Box Elder County, by Lydia Walker Forsgren, 1937, page 30)

September 11, 1871
"Ogden Items.-The following items are from the "Junction," of Saturday: "Two miles of the Utah Northern Railroad have already been graded, near Brigham City, by the people of that place." (Deseret Evening News, September 11, 1871)

September 22, 1871
"Railroad Mass Meeting at Ogden. We learn from the 'Junction,' of Wednesday, that on Saturday last, a mass meeting was held in the Ogden Tabernacle, at which representatives were present from all the districts in Weber County, the object of the meeting being to take into consideration the building of the U. N. Railroad.

"Hon. F. D. Richards delivered an address...

"John W. Young, Esq., President of the Company, stated that he had -for some time past seen the importance of building a railroad from Ogden to Soda Springs, and had introduced the matter to gentlemen of capital in the East, who had, after personal inspection of the route, undertaken-to furnish means for the iron and rolling stock, if the people would do the grading and furnish the ties. A company had been organized, work had commenced, and four miles of the road was ready for the rails, and five miles of rails would be here in a few days. Mr. Young then showed the advantage of building the line on the narrow gauge principle, proving that it would be a saving of over 40 per cent., taking its construction and running expenses into consideration.

"Hon. L. Farr and L. J. Herrick each made appropriate remarks,..." "The meeting is described as having been an animated, earnest and enthusiastic assemblage."

October 14, 1871
"For the Utah Northern. -- A dispatch received this morning, from John W. Young, Esq., who is now in the East, states that an engine and seven cars for the Utah Northern Railroad, have been shipped. That gentleman has also succeeded excellently in procuring iron and rolling stock." (Deseret Evening News, October 14, 1871)

October 31, 1871
"First Engine.- The first engine for the Utah Northern railroad arrived at Ogden last night. It is named the 'John W. Young,' after the president and general superintendent of the road. Iron and cars are expected daily, when track laying will commence." (Salt Lake Daily Herald, October 31, 1871)

November 4, 1871
"The Utah Northern is progressing rapidly. A great number of men and teams are pushing the work ahead in Cache Valley, and all the officers of the road are energetic and sanguine of success. A handsome little narrow gauge locomotive, the 'John W. Young', arrived at Ogden the beginning of the present week, and a telegram from Chicago announces that a complete construction train is on the way for the new line." (Ogden Junction, November 4, 1871)

December 23, 1871
"Mormon Railroad Enterprise" - excerpts from a long letter written by some 'E.N.F.-' to the Newark (N.J.) 'Daily Advertiser', and lifted from that paper by the Herald: "The Utah Northern railroad company is already organized under the presidency of John W. Young, one of the prolific family of the great prophet. It starts at Willard City, a few miles north of Ogden... "This is a narrow gauge road, a small portion of which is already constructed from Willard City, and Mr. Young is quite sanguine that he will be able to bring sufficient capital to his aid for its construction. There is already a locomotive upon the tracks, and with the opening of the next spring the work will undoubtedly be pushed rapidly." (Salt Lake Herald, December 23, 1871)

January 22, 1872
"Utah Northern Railroad. -- There are now at the depot two flat cars, two trucks, and a combined mail car and caboose for the Utah Northern. As soon as the iron arrives, which is on the way, track-laying will commence, and it will not be long before the Loganites will hear the shrill whistle of the little locomotive. Bring on the iron." Item from the Ogden Junction of the 20th. (Deseret Evening News, January 22, 1872)

March 25, 1872
"Utah Northern Railroad. -- the following was received by Deseret Telegraph this afternoon: "Utah Northern RR Junction, March 25 - the first spike on the Utah Northern RR. was driven at 11 a.m. today. Half a mile of track will be laid this afternoon." (Deseret Evening News, March 25, 1872)

March 26, 1872
"Utah Northern. -- 'A.C.' of Brigham City, writing under date of March 29th, says: "Little progress has yet been made in tracklaying on the U.N. line, which commenced last Monday four miles from Brigham City, the tracklayers being engaged most of their time unloading the iron which is now pouring in from the East. We are informed that forty additional car loads of rail are now at Ogden." (Deseret Evening News, March 30, 1872) ("Monday" was March 26, 1872.)

March 28, 1872
About a mile of track is laid on the Utah Northern. (Deseret Evening News, March 28, 1872)

March 29, 1872
Utah Northern laid first rail, connecting with the Central Pacific. (History of Box Elder County, by Lydia Walker Forsgren, 1937, page 31)

March 30, 1872
"Utah Northern. -- 'A.C.' of Brigham City, writing under date of March 29th, says: "Little progress has yet been made in tracklaying on the U.N. line, which commenced last Monday four miles from Brigham City, the tracklayers being engaged most of their time unloading the iron which is now pouring in from the East. We are informed that forty additional car loads of rail are now at Ogden."(Deseret Evening News, March 30, 1872)

April 6, 1872
J. W. Young informs the Deseret Evening News that the Utah Northern Railroad will run trains to meet the Central Pacific trains, for conference visitors. (Deseret Evening News, April 6, 1872)

April 12, 1872
"Utah Northern Railroad. -- Bro. W. J. Silver, master mechanic of this road informs us that he was on the line from Tuesday until Friday of last week, and was engaged in running the engine, which, he says, works splendidly. It has a nine-inch cylinder, with a sixteen-inch stroke, and forty-eight inch driving wheels. Besides the engine, the line has one passenger car, two dump, one box and two flat cars." "The line is narrow gauge, being three feet wide. Up to Thursday night about five miles of track were laid, and it was being put down at the rate of half a mile a day. There is a large amount of iron on the ground and Brother Silver passed seven car loads on his way back to this City. The grading is nearly completed to Cache Valley." (Deseret Evening News, April 12, 1872)

June 5, 1872
The Utah Northern is to open officially, as far as Hampton's, on the 18th. (Salt Lake Daily Herald, June 5, 1872)

June 8, 1872
The Utah Northern had operated its first passenger train, northward from Brigham City. (OSL corporate history)

June 9, 1872
"The Utah Northern R.R. -- The first train for the accommodation of passengers on this line, was run on Sunday last, when about five hundred persons from Cache county were landed in Brigham City by it. (Salt Lake Herald, June 12, 1872) ("Sunday last" was June 9, 1872)

June 13, 1872
Utah Northern tracks reached the foothills about one mile east of Hamptons (or Bear River Bridge), near Hamptons Crossing, a toll bridge and stage station on the Bear River, 23 miles from Three Mile Creek, and the connection with Central Pacific. (Deseret Evening News, June 18, 1872; Reeder, p. 227)

(The station at Hamptons was later renamed to Collinston; this should not to be confused with the present day station of the same name which is located on the relocated 1890 standard-gauge line.)

June 18, 1872
The Utah Northern officially opened today; line runs from CPRR Junction, below Brigham City, to Hampton's, or Bear River Bridge, a distance of some 23 miles. (Deseret Evening News, June 18, 1872)

July 1, 1872
Two trains a day on the U.N.R.R.; item says two more engines and a number of passenger cars. (Deseret Evening News, July 1, 1872)

August 11, 1872
An item, column long, written by editor E. L. Sloan, on the trip recently made by C. R. Savage over the line of the Utah Northern, and mentioning some of the pictures that Savage made that day. (Salt Lake Herald, August 11, 1872)

August 13, 1872
"Local Brevities." "Toohy calls the Young-Hooper pet Northern narrow gauge, 'that scrap-iron affair!' Ta-ta!" (Utah Mining Journal, August 13, 1872)

August 23, 1872
"Local Brevities." "John Young's opinion of the Utah, Idaho and Montana railroad is not flattering. He says the road will never be built, but it is raising h--l with the bonds of the Utah Northern in the New York market! Which, it is not too much to say, is bad enough for the narrow gauge." (Deseret Evening News, August 26, 1872)

August 26, 1872
A telegraph office opened at Hampton's, with Charles Nibley as operator. (Deseret Evening News, August 26, 1872)

August 30, 1872
"New views of the Utah Northern,..., at the Pioneer Art Gallery" of C. R. Savage. (Salt Lake Herald, August 30, 1872)

September 5, 1872
Utah Northern timetable and fare schedule appear in the newspaper for the first time. (Salt Lake Herald, September 5, 1872)

September 10, 1872
Item from Council Bluffs 'Non Pariel' of September 5, 1872: "Two narrow gauge passenger cars intended for use on the Utah Northern arrived here yesterday. They came via the Chicago & Northwestern, and will probably be shipped west today." (Salt Lake Herald, September 10, 1872)

September 11, 1872
"Cars for the Utah Northern. -- We had a pleasant visit this morning from Albert Dutton, Esq., who reached this city on Monday evening, having in his charge two new passenger cars - the 'Ogden' and the 'Soda Springs' - for the Utah Northern line, direct from the Jackson & Sharp Company's Works, Delaware. Mr. Dutton started for Salt Lake on the 25th of last month, and had a very pleasant trip." "These cars are capable of seating 46 persons each; they are constructed with the latest improvements, having the Miller coupling platform, patent ventilators, improved water tanks, etc. They are handsomely finished, the inside being black walnut, ash and chestnut, and cost, we are informed, somewhere in the neighborhood of five thousand dollars each." (Deseret Evening News, September 11, 1872)

September 12, 1872
"Ogden Items - We take the following from the 'Junction' of yesterday: "last Monday evening two handsome palace cars arrived here, and were forwarded northward, for the Utah Northern railroad, named respectively 'Ogden' and 'Soda Springs'. They were constructed by Jackson and Sharp, Wilmington, Delaware, and are as beautifully finished as any standard gauge cars that run. They each contain twenty-two double and two single seats, with patent bowed ends, which give more room than the ordinary kind, and are fitted with the Miller platform, with self-acting couplings. Two hand cars for the little road were also forwarded with them." (Monday was the 9th of September 1872) (Salt Lake Herald, September 12, 1872) ("last Monday" was September 9, 1872)

September 21, 1872
"Gen. P. Edward Connor arrived this morning from the West. He says the Utah, Idaho and Montana road is to be built. That means the death knell of the Northern narrow gauge, run under Mormon auspices. Well, it is time that the roads in this country are in liberal hands." (Utah Mining Journal, September 21, 1872)

September 23, 1872
"Accident on the Utah Northern -- Last Thursday evening a slight accident occurred on the Utah Northern. The engine ran over a steer, cutting him in two, the collision causing the engine to run off the track and tip over. Slight damage was done, and by Friday noon the engine was running again, the accident causing the omission of one round trip." (Deseret Evening News, September 23, 1872)

October 23, 1872
"Utah Northern. -- Two more engines, more powerful and more suited to the service than the others employed, are running on the Utah Northern R.R., one commenced on Friday morning and the other on Sunday. Each has six wheels coupled, three feet six inches in diameter, with cylinders 10 x 16 inches. The big fill is within six feet of the top and its completion is all that there is any waiting for on the way to Logan, to finish the road to which point there is sufficient iron already on hand." (Deseret Evening News, October 23, 1872)

(Friday was the October 18th, and Sunday was October 20th; the two engines referred to were Utah Northern's first 2-6-0 Mogul locomotives, No. 2 "Utah" and No. 3 "Idaho".)

October 25, 1872
Utah Northern: "The two new passenger cars, handsomely upholstered and elegantly painted, and the two new locomotives that have lately been added to the rolling stock command enconmiums." (Salt Lake Herald, October 25, 1872)

December 11, 1872
As of today, the Utah Northern Railroad runs to a terminus six miles from Logan; Charles Nibley is appointed General Freight & Traffic Agent of the U.N.R.R. (Salt Lake Herald, December 11, 1872)

December 19, 1872
Utah Northern tracks completed to Mendon, after having crossed over the Collinston Divide and entering the Cache Valley. (OSL corporate history; History of Box Elder County, by Lydia Walker Forsgren, 1937, page 31)

December 20, 1872
A shortage of spikes on the Utah Northern has halted tracklaying. (Deseret Evening News, December 20, 1872)

January 16, 1873
The U.N.RR. is about four miles from Logan. (Salt Lake Herald, January 16, 1873)

January 19, 1873
The Utah Northern is now about one mile from Logan. (Salt Lake Herald, January 19, 1873)

January 31, 1873
Utah Northern the tracks were completed to Logan. Completed to within a mile of town on the 19th. (Intermountain Railroads, by Merrill D. Beal, 1962, page 17; History of Box Elder County, by Lydia Walker Forsgren, 1937, page 31)

There were many delays caused by the frigid temperatures and winter storms. The winter conditions were the reason that the completion ceremony at Logan was postponed until February 3, and still a snow storm prevented residents of Salt Lake City and Ogden from attending. (Reeder, p. 229)

(Athearn, p. 239, says the road reached Logan "in January".)

(OSL corporate history says the road was completed to Logan on January 31.)

February 1, 1873
The Utah Northern has been completed to Logan. (Deseret Evening News, February 1, 1873)

February 3, 1873
"Completed.--The Northern Railroad is completed to Logan City, and there is to be a blow-out there to-day on account of it. The Utah Northern is a narrow-gauge, and is forty miles long." (Utah Mining Journal, February 3, 1873)

February 4, 1873
Celebration of completion of the Utah Northern to Logan was to have been yesterday, but snow interfered. New timetable for service to Logan was in this paper for the first time; 'On and after February 1st 1873...'. (Salt Lake Herald, February 4, 1873)

The following comes from History of Box Elder County, by Lydia Walker Forsgren, 1937, page 31:

In 1873, February 4th, Andrew Christensen reported to the Deseret News an account of the celebration held in South Willard. He designates the spot as near Marsh Farm (old residents say it was near the brick school house in South Willard) The celbration was held because the Utah Northern Railroad was completed between Ogden and Brigham. The excercises began at 3:30 p. m. under the direction of Chester Loveland, mayor of Brigham City. Christensen's brass band furnished the music.

The last spike, which was made by John D. Reese, was driven in place by Judge Samuel Smith. Other spikes were driven by Judge Farr of Ogden, Bishop Alvin Nichols of Brigham City, and Bishop George M. Ward of Willard. These men had been the contractors under whose direction the road had been built.

Bishop George Pitkin of Cache County addressed the assembly and said, "The Cache Valley people will soon push the road to Franklin."

Between four and five hundred people were present.

February 5, 1873
The Utah Northern suffering yet from snow blockade. (Salt Lake Herald, February 5, 1873)

April 13, 1873
Grading for Utah Northern extension to Corinne is nearly completed, and tomorrow work on the bridge over the Bear River is to commence, all the materials being on hand. Also, all the ties are on hand for the line to Franklin. (Salt Lake Herald, April 13, 1873)

June 7, 1873
Utah Northern track completed yesterday to the Bear River Bridge. (Salt Lake Herald, June 7, 1873)

June 9, 1873
The four-mile branch from "Brigham City Junction" to Corinne was completed on Monday June 9, 1873. ("The Year Of 1873", Our Pioneer Heritage, Volume 17, 1974, p. 5)

June 11, 1873
The last spike on the connection of the UNRR to Corinne was driven at 4:00pm on the 10th of June, 1873. (Corinne Reporter, June 11, 1873) (Reeder, p. 231, cites the Salt Lake Herald for October 9, 1873, October 15, 1873, and December 24, 1873, but these issues do not have any reference to the Corinne branch.)

June 11, 1873
On and after June 12, 1873, the Utah Northern will run regular trains to and from Corinne. (Salt Lake Herald, June 11, 1873; Athearn, on page 240, uses this date as the completion of the branch)

(OSL corporate history, p. 14, says that the 4.11 mile branch between Brigham City and Corinne was completed on June 9, 1873.)

(The 1913 ICC Valuation map for Corinne shows the old U&N grade heading north out of Corinne, crossing the Bear River and heading northeast to Bakers, which is 4.5 miles north of Brigham City.)

(The spur for the later Ogden Portland cement plant, built in May 1918, was apparently constructed on the old Utah Northern narrow-gauge roadbed west from Bakers.)

June 12, 1873
"The first regular train to Corinne, by this line, ran today." This was the Utah Northern line to Corinne. (Deseret Evening News, June 12, 1873)

July 7, 1873
"There is now coming out from the east a large amount of iron, and a number of passenger and freight cars for the Utah Northern Railroad." "In six weeks the narrow gauge will be open from Corinne to Franklin." (Corinne Reporter, July 7, 1873)

September 6, 1873
"Resources of Utah." "Statistics of Progress during the Year 1873 -- Summary for Six Months ending June 30th." April -- "The Utah Northern Railroad. Grading on the extension of this line to Corinne was completed and work on the bridge over Bear River was progressing rapidly." (Utah Mining Gazette, September 6, 1873)

September 27, 1873
"Local Summary." "Iron for seven miles more of the Utah Northern Railroad has been received, and is now being laid north of Logan. Sufficient iron for another twenty miles is on the way." (Utah Mining Gazette, September 27, 1873)

October 1, 1873
"The Idaho -- the Utah Northern engine 'Idaho', which for two months has been laid up in the engine house at Logan for repairs, made its trial trip this morning, and worked like a charm. It rendered material assistance to the heavily loaded train which came in from Logan while it was coming up the heavy grades." (Deseret Evening News, October 1, 1873)

October 9, 1873
Utah Northern track completed to Hyde Park. (Salt Lake Herald, October 9, 1873)

October 11, 1873
From the Corinne Reporter of the 9th: "A snow plow is being built for the Utah Northern railroad." (Salt Lake Daily Herald, October 11, 1873)

October 31, 1873
"A locomotive was sent to Ogden today, to assist in laying the track the Utah Northern at that place." from Corinne Reporter, October 31, 1873. (Deseret Evening News, October 31, 1873)

November 3, 1873
Ogden -- "Rails on the U. N. R. R. in placing the rails on this end of the U. N. road was commenced Saturday and is now being pushed forward... The iron 'pony' arrived here this morning and will be placed on the track some time to-day." (Ogden Junction, November 3, 1873)

December 11, 1873
George Richard son is son of Joseph Richardson, the money behind U.N.R.R. (Salt Lake Herald, December 11, 1873)

December 31, 1873
"City Jottings." "The Utah Northern (narrow gauge) has enough iron on hand to complete it from Ogden to Brigham City." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, December 31, 1873)

January 15, 1874
Utah Northern tracklaying south from Brigham Junction to Ogden has begun. (Deseret Evening News, January 15, 1874)

February 5, 1874
Utah Northern tracks completed to Ogden. Work had begun in November 1872 but it was stopped to complete work on other parts of the road. In September 1873 work of grading the line to Ogden was resumed. On January 15 track laying began at Brigham Junction. (Athearn, p. 240; Deseret Evening News, January 15, 1874; Ogden Junction, February 6, 1874)

(OSL corporate history says that operation began between Brigham City and Ogden on February 4, 1874.)

February 6, 1874
"Utah Northern Connection." "Yesterday at 4:40pm the connection on the Utah Northern Railroad was made at a point opposite the brick schoolhouse in Willard Precinct near the residence of Mr. George Marsh." "An immense audience assembled at this place, and at 4:35 the engines John W. Young and Utah approached and saluted each other." The John W. Young from the Ogden side, and the Utah from the north. Much speechifying, several 'last spikes,' and "...the last spike, of silver, made in the Brigham City Co-operative Blacksmith shop, was driven by Judge [S.] Smith,..." "The two engines then closed up and met, and were coupled, the northern and southern parts of the road thus being joined..."; and later on, "...the two engines bore off a large company in triumph to Brigham City." Thus the Utah Northern arrives in Ogden. (Ogden Junction, February 6, 1874)

"Just as we go to press, the Utah Northern is being connected. Tomorrow, (Feb. 6th), passage will be clear along the line from Ogden to Logan. Let us rejoice! We understand that a celebration will be held at Brigham City, tomorrow at noon. Now push the line to Franklin, and then on to Soda and the North, and let Montana come down to meet us." ("Our Pioneer Heritage, Volume 18, 1975, page 11, "1874, An Eventful Year")

March 31, 1874
"For the Narrow Gauge -- four new flat cars, also a mail and baggage car, have arrived for the Utah Northern. They are all neat, trim and well-made, and match the rest of the handsome rolling stock of the Company;" (Ogden Junction, March 31, 1874)

April 24, 1874
Item lifted from the Helena 'Independent', of recent days, says the paper; a letter sent to someone in Helena by Mr. George S. Kennedy, of the firm of Creighton & Co.; Kennedy wrote from New York under date of March 31, 1874 - all arrangements for another 25 miles of railroad have been made -- "The iron is bought and paid for, and also two new engines and sixteen new freight cars." also says "Mr. Richardson, of New York, controls the road." (Salt Lake Herald, April 24, 1874)

April 25, 1874
Extract from letter dated 31 March 1874, written by George S. Kennedy, and lifted by the News from the Deer Lodge Independent: "We have all the arrangements made now to have the Utah Northern finished twenty-five miles beyond Franklin' this season. The iron is bought and paid for, and also two new engines and sixteen new freight cars. The road is now running from Ogden to Franklin." (Deseret Evening News, April 25, 1874)

May 2, 1874
Utah Northern tracks were completed to Franklin, Idaho, at Noon. (Deseret News, May 2, 1874)

Work had begun from Logan on September 17, 1873. Tracks had reached Hyde Park on October 9 and Smithfield on November 17, where work was halted for the winter. Work resumed at Smithfield in late March 1874. (Reeder, page 234)

May 3, 1874
From Deseret Evening News of 2nd; Utah Northern Railroad was completed to Franklin, Idaho Territory, at noon on May 2, 1874, to which place regular trains will commence on the 4th of May, 1874. (Salt Lake Herald, May 3, 1874)

May 27, 1874
"Trial Trip -- the new locomotive, 'Logan', lately purchased by the Utah Northern Company for their road, has been put in running order, and made a trial trip to Logan today." (Ogden Junction, May 27, 1874)

May 30, 1874
"Runs Well -- Mr. S. Gordon, a locomotive engineer, from Paterson, N. J., who has put the new U. N. engine 'Logan' in running order, and who took her on her trial trip to Logan a few days since, called this morning and informed us that the engine runs admirably. It took fifteen cars over the road with ease, three of which were loaded and six of them new, the new ones running as hard as an old one loaded. Mr. Gordon thinks the engine is able to take twelve loaded cars over the road with ease, notwithstanding the heavy grades on portions of it." (Ogden Junction, May 30, 1874)

July 8, 1874
"Another Locomotive - Another locomotive for the Utah Northern arrived last evening. It is to be christened the "Franklin" and was built at the Grant Locomotive works, Paterson, New Jersey, the same firm who built the "Logan." Mr. Gordon, who was sent here to put the "Logan" in running order will also put the "Franklin" in working condition." (Ogden Junction, July 8, 1874) (See also, Deseret News, July 9, 1874)

July 9, 1874
"Another Locomotive -- the Ogden Junction of July 8, says: Another locomotive for the Utah Northern arrived last evening. It is to be christened the 'Franklin' and was built at the Grant Locomotive Works, Paterson, New Jersey, the same firm who built the 'Logan'. Mr. Gordon, who was sent here to put the 'Logan' in running order will also put the 'Franklin' in working condition." (Deseret Evening News, July 9, 1874)

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

January 26, 1875
From a longer item on the Utah Northern: "There are now five locomotives - two 17 ton engines - on the Utah Northern, and plenty of cars. The trouble heretofore was with the engines...[which] are now adequate to the work and are running regularly." (Deseret Evening News, January 26, 1875)

December 29, 1875
Last appearance of Utah Northern timetable dated October 13, 1875, which showed service to Corinne. (Ogden Junction, December 29, 1875)

December 30, 1875
"Utah Northern." "...has adopted a new timetable, which appears in this morning's Herald. It goes into effect on January 1st, 1876. Hereafter the running of trains into Corinne will be discontinued, as the custom of the town does not pay the company for keeping up the Corinne branch." (Salt Lake Daily Herald, December 30, 1875)

December 30, 1875
"Local Items." "Utah Northern.--Travelers by U. N. R. R. should take notice of the change of schedule. Trains will leave Ogden on and after January 1st, 1876, at 9:20 a.m., reaching Franklin at 3:30 p.m.; and start from Franklin at 9:00 a.m., reaching Ogden at 4:00 p.m." "Traffic to Corinne will be discontinued. See time table." (Ogden Junction, December 30, 1875)

December 30, 1875
"The Utah Northern. - It is announced that on and after Jan. 1st trains on the Utah Northern R. R. will leave Ogden daily at 9:20 a.m., Franklin at 9:00 a.m., and Logan at 10:55 a.m. Trains to and from Corinne will be discontinued." (Deseret Evening News, December 30, 1875)

January 17, 1876
"Local Items." "Wanted." "A competent boiler maker. Steady employment is guaranteed if satisfaction is given. Apply to 'M. W. Merrill, Supt., U.N.R.R., Logan." (Ogden Junction, January 17, 1876)

February 15, 1876
A wreck, one mile south of Deweyville, on Utah Northern; engine without snowplow hit a snowdrift, pilot bent down, caught, and engine went over on its side; comment is made that "the mail and baggage car and coach were left on the track uninjured." (Ogden Junction, February 15, 1876)

March 11, 1877
Two new postal cars on the Utah Northern; made at Omaha. (The Utah County Enquirer, Provo, March 11, 1877)

October 16, 1877
Item headed "U. & N. R. R.", about meeting of the directors at Logan on the 10th; Royal M. Bassett. president; Geo. W. Thatcher, superintendent. Twice the road is mentioned as 'U. & N. R. R.'. (Salt Lake Herald, October 16, 1877)

November 8, 1877
Tracklaying on the Utah Northern north of Franklin is expected to be commenced soon, there being 20,000 ties on hand. (Ogden Junction, November 8, 1877)

November 9, 1877
Several miles of grade on the Utah Northern are ready for tracklaying, which was to begin yesterday, says the 'Junction.' Some 20,000 ties are on hand at the present time. (Salt Lake Herald, November 9, 1877)

(This was when Union Pacific interests took over the Utah Northern, reorganizing it as the Utah & Northern in April 1878.)

November 17, 1877
A long letter on the Utah Northern, dated at Logan on the 15th; it says that George W. Thatcher became the superintendent of the road in January. At present, the Logan shops are repairing the old engines 'as good as new,' and "two very fine mail cars ... have been added to the rolling stock,..." (Salt Lake Herald, November 17, 1877)

November 19, 1877
Track is some 4-1/2 miles beyond Franklin as of 15th. (Ogden Junction, November 19, 1877)

November 20, 1877
The Ogden 'Junction' reports that ten miles of track have lately been laid on the Utah Northern line north from Franklin. (Salt Lake Herald, November 20, 1877)

November 30, 1877
"The iron for the Utah Northern having been released, a construction train will be put on as soon as possible." (Ogden Junction, November 30, 1877)

January 29, 1878
"Some 100 car loads, or twelve miles, of iron have arrived for the Utah Northern extension, and been forwarded to their destination, within the past month. The rails are of a superior character, being five pounds to the yard, heavier than narrow gauge iron usually is." (Ogden Junction, January 29, 1878)

February 6, 1878
"NOTICE -- Sale of Utah Northern Railroad" first appears; the order is dated January 31, 1878, from Third District Court, in cause of Union Trust Co. v. The Utah Northern Railroad Company. This notice is dated February 5, 1878, and sale is to be March 20, 1878 at Salt Lake County Courthouse. (Ogden Junction, February 6, 1878)

March 21, 1878
Sale postponed to April 3, 1878. (Ogden Junction, March 21, 1878)

March 23, 1878
Grading and tracklaying have resumed. The bridge over the Bear River (at Battle Creek) has been completed. (Ogden Junction, March 23, 1878)

April 3, 1878
Utah Northern Railroad was sold under foreclosure to the Utah & Northern Railway, organized by Union Pacific interests for the purpose of buying the bankrupt company. The foreclosure sale resulted from a Third District Court order of January 31 in case Union Trust Company versus Utah Northern. (Ogden Junction, February 6, 1878; March 21, 1878)

April 3, 1878
"The Utah Northern Railroad was sold yesterday, at public auction." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, April 4, 1878, "yesterday")

April 3, 1878
"The U. N. Sale -- the sale of the Utah Northern RR took place at Salt Lake yesterday; it was bought by Mr. S. H. H. Clark, for $100,000. He passed over the road on a special train today." (Ogden Junction, April 4, 1878, "yesterday")

Clark, who was the General Superintendent of the Union Pacific, deeded the old Utah Northern to the new Utah & Northern on May 3, 1878. (OSL corporate history).

April 5, 1878
"The Utah Northern." "The Utah Northern was purchased by Mr. S.H.H. Clark, of the Union Pacific, for $100,000, and yesterday he went to Logan to be installed in his new estate. He made the purchase for Jay Gould and his associates,..." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, April 5, 1878)

April 20, 1878
"Utah Northern." "The Utah Northern Railroad is being pushed rapidly towards the Snake River, where the scream of the locomotive will be heard before the summer is gone. The company have already received ten new flat cars and seven new box cars for the road. They are in every respect superior to the old rolling stock, and will be put immediately on the track for service in transferring freight to and from the terminus." (Salt Lake Daily Tribune, April 20, 1878)

April 26, 1878
New timetable on the Utah Northern, trains now running to Round Valley. (Round Valley Marsh shows on 1879 map as south of Oxford.) (Ogden Junction, April 26, 1878)

Franklin remained the terminal of the road from May 1874 until the foreclosure sale in April 1878. The old Utah Northern had completed 14.5 miles of grading towards Soda Springs, northeast of Franklin, but when Union Pacific resumed construction on November 8, 1877, they built in a northwesterly direction and abandoned the grade to Soda Springs. (Salt Lake Herald, November 9, 1877)

Three years later, on December 15, 1881, the road was completed to Butte, Montana, 466 miles from Ogden, Utah. (Reeder, pp. 243-252; OSL corporate history)


Utah Northern Railroad Locomotives

More Information

Utah Northern Railroad Corporate Information -- Information about the Utah Northern Railroad corporate organization

Clarence Reeder -- Information about Utah Northern Railroad from Reeder's manuscript

Ogden Rails -- An excerpt about Utah Northern and Utah & Northern from Don Strack's "Ogden Rails".

Utah Northern -- A excellent article about the need and construction of the Utah Northern is in Leonard Arrington's "Railroad Building And Cooperatives 1869-1879," Chapter VIII of History of a Valley: Cache Valley, Utah-Idaho, Editor Joel E. Ricks, published in 1956 (PDF; 18 pages; 5.5MB)