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Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad - Lines West


RG3913.AM:  Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad - Lines West

Records:  1869-1950s
Size:  116.5 cu.ft.; 109 boxes & 21 volumes

HISTORICAL NOTE

The Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad (CB&Q) started out as the Aurora Branch Railroad on February 12, 1849 in Aurora, Illinois. By 1864, the railroad had 400 miles of track (all in Illinois) and adopted the familiar name Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Co., which properly described its trackage stretching to Burlington, Iowa and Quincy, Illinois on the Mississippi River. The Burlington, as it came to be known, completed its own line from Aurora to Chicago in 1864.

The railroad across Iowa was the Burlington and Missouri River Railroad (B&MR), incorporated in Burlington in 1852. Operations began over the first few miles of track on New Year's Day, 1856. The railroad reached Ottumwa by 1857, through Murray in the fall of 1858 and was completed to the Missouri River in November 1869.

In 1868 the CB&Q completed bridges over the Mississippi both at Burlington and Quincy, giving the railroad through connections with the B&MR in Iowa and the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad in Missouri. The B&MR continued building westward into Nebraska as a separate company, the Burlington & Missouri River Rail Road in Nebraska, founded in 1869. During the summer of 1870, it reached Lincoln, the newly designated capital of Nebraska, and by 1872 it reached Kearney. That same year the CB&Q absorbed the B&MR across Iowa. By the time the Missouri River bridge at Plattsmouth was completed, the B&MR in Nebraska was nearing Denver, Colorado. That same year, the Nebraska B&MR was purchased by the CB&Q. The CB&Q completed the line to Denver in 1882, making it the first direct rail line from Chicago to Denver.

The turn of the century brought about the purchase of the CB&Q by railroad "Empire Builder," James J. Hill, founder of the Great Northern Railroad. Hill's Great Northern and Northern Pacific railroads purchased 97.2 percent of the CB&Q's common stock, paying $200 per share. Perhaps the Burlington's best-known achievement took place in 1934 with the introduction of the Pioneer Zephyr, America's first diesel powered streamlined passenger train. Its high-speed diesel-electric propulsion system was the forerunner of thousands of diesels that replaced steam locomotives on virtually every railroad a few short years after WWII. Burlington's first freight diesels were purchased in 1944, and 95 percent of its trains were diesel powered by 1953.

In 1945 Burlington created America's first vista-dome passenger car. Some of the Burlington's passenger trains included the Aristocrat, the Blackhawk, the Denver Flyer, the Denver Zephyr, the Pioneer Zephyr, the Twin Cities Zephyr, the Mark Twain Zephyr, the General Pershing Zephyr, the Kansas City Zephyr, the American Royal Zephyr, the Nebraska Zephyr, the Ak-Sar-Ben Zephyr, and the Sam Houston Zephyr. In cooperation with other railroads, the Burlington also ran the Empire Builder, Exposition Flyer, California Zephyr, North Coast Limited, Zephyr-Rocket, and the Western Star.

On March 2, 1970, the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad became a part of the Burlington Northern Railroad, which merged the CB&Q with its owners, the Great Northern and the Northern Pacific. Shortly thereafter, America's passenger trains were nationalized with the creation of Amtrak. The silver, stainless steel Zephyrs gave way to a rainbow of equipment from railroads across the nation.

The BN painted the Burlington's bright Chinese red locomotives Cascade green and they continued pulling freight trains of all kinds. On September 22, 1995, another merger took place, combining the BN with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad creating the current BNSF railroad.

Note: This background information is courtesy of the Burlington Route Historical Society.

SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE

Series 1 (88 boxes) consists of field books/survey notes relating to this railroad company's Nebraska Lines, 1869-1950's. The latter designation is considered appropriate for those routes either originating in Nebraska or at least traversing a portion of the state. Specifically, the volumes include topography and transit books as well as those titled "cross-sections" and "levels."

The material within the boxes, though not organized numerically, reflects a basic numerical scheme of arrangement (#1 - #12379) as employed by the Lincoln Burlington office. Individual volumes are labeled with a number that should be included within the general numerical range reflected on each box. Since the items within the boxes were transferred directly from office file cabinets, certain volumes, if initially misfiled, remain so. Thus, the book numbers within a container may not necessarily coincide with the range of numbers delineated on the box. Lastly, the eleven volumes of indexes contained in Box 1 are not relevant to the entire range of field books. A more detailed PDF inventory of this series follows the box list below.

Series 2 consists of twenty boxes containing rolled profile maps and drawings (also called alignments) relating to various sections of track of the CB&Q and associated railroads. States included in the profiles are Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Montana, Kansas, South Dakota, Utah, Missouri and Iowa. Some profiles are of proposed lines or changes to lines. Dates of the drawings range from 1871-1933.

Series 3 contains twenty right of way abstract books. These books contain lists of stations (Nebraska & Kansas) and corresponding plat numbers. Plat numbers range from 44103 to 49628. Each subsequent page contains the ROW acquisitions for a corresponding plat number. In some books the plat is also included. Each land acquisition entry contains File Number, Subdivision, Section, Township, Range, Grantor, Grantee, Instrument (type), Date, Record Book & Page, Consideration, and Remarks. If ROW was within a city, the Block and Lot Number are listed. The collection does not include a complete set of books. The books range from 2-39 with various volumes missing.

Series 4, Miscellaneous, contains correspondence and clippings regarding train accidents and the blizzard of 1949 as well as a report on the Plattsmouth Bridge by the Chief Engineer, George S. Morison, dated 1882.

Funding to better organize and describe this collection was graciously provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation administered through the Council on Library and Information Resources.

CONTAINER LIST

Series 1 - Field Books

Box 1 - Indexes to Field Books, c.1870-1940's (11 volumes)
Box 2 - Field Books, 1-64
Box 3 - Field Books, 65-132 (1)
Box 4 - Field Books, 65-132 (2) and 133-198 (1)
Box 5 - Field Books, 133-198 (2) and 199-294 (1)
Box 6 - Field Books, 199-294 (2)
Box 7 - Field Books, 265-380 (1)
Box 8 - Field Books, 265-380 (2) and 381-468 (1)
Box 9 - Field Books, 381-468 (2) and 469-552 (1)
Box 10 - Field Books, 469-552 (2)
Box 11 - Field Books, 553-640 (1)
Box 12 - Field Books, 553-640 (2) and 641-725 (1)
Box 13 - Field Books, 641-725 (2) and 726-817 (1)
Box 14 - Field Books, 726-817 (2) and 818-900 (1)
Box 15 - Field Books, 818-900 (2) and 901-988 (1)
Box 16 - Field Books, 901-988 (2) and 989-1082 (1)
Box 17 - Field Books, 989-1082 (2) and 1181-1263 (1)
Box 18 - Field Books, 1181-1263 (2) and 1264-1350
Box 19 - Field Books, 1351-1435
Box 20 - Field Books, 1436-1525
Box 21 - Field Books, 1526-1610 and 1611-1700 (1)
Box 22 - Field Books, 1611-1700 (2) and 1701-1790
Box 23 - Field Books, 2016-2094 and 2421-2648
Box 24 - Field Books, 2649-2728; 3101-3173 and 3174-3254
Box 25 - Field Books, 3255-3331 and 3332-3416
Box 26 - Field Books, 3417-3490 and 3491-3568 (1)
Box 27 - Field Books, 3491-3568 (2) and 3781-3858
Box 28 - Field Books, 3859-3935 (1)
Box 29 - Field Books, 3859-3935 (2); 3936-4020 and 4021-4085 (1)
Box 30 - Field Books, 4021-4085 (2) and 4086-4158 (1)
Box 31 - Field Books, 4086-4158 (2) and 4159-4239 (1)
Box 32 - Field Books, 4159-4239 (2) and 4240-4318 (1)
Box 33 - Field Books, 4240-4318 (2)
Box 34 - Field Books, 4319-4399 (1)
Box 35 - Field Books, 4319-4399 (2) and 4400-4477
Box 36 - Field Books, 4478-4559
Box 37 - Field Books, 4560-4637 and 4638-4712 (1)
Box 38 - Field Books, 4638-4712 (2); 4713-4783; 4784-5015 and 5016-5095 (1)
Box 39 - Field Books, 5016-5095 (2) and 5096-5168 (1)
Box 40 - Field Books, 5096-5168 (2) and 5169-5242 (1)
Box 41 - Field Books, 5169-5242 (2) and 5243-5317 (1)
Box 42 - Field Books, 5243-5317 (2) and 5318-5399 (1)
Box 43 - Field Books, 5318-5399 (2) and 5400-5470
Box 44 - Field Books, 5471-5563 and 5564-5619 (1)
Box 45 - Field Books, 5564-5619 (2) and 5620-5664 (1)
Box 46 - Field Books, 5620-5664 (2) and 5665-5719 (1)
Box 47 - Field Books, 5665-5719 (2) and 5720-5810 (1)
Box 48 - Field Books, 5720-5810 (2) and 5811-5899
Box 49 - Field Books, 5900-5989 and 5990-6074 (1)
Box 50 - Field Books, 5990-6074 (2)
Box 51 - Field Books, 6075-6149 (1)
Box 52 - Field Books, 6075-6149 (2) and 6150-6237
Box 53 - Field Books, 6238-6316; 6480-6559 and 6560-6636 (1)
Box 54 - Field Books, 6560-6636 (2) and 6637-6717 (1)
Box 55 - Field Books, 6637-6717 (2) and 6718-6786
Box 56 - Field Books, 6787-6875
Box 57 - Field Books, 6876-6959 (1)
Box 58 - Field Books, 6876-6959 (2) and 6960-7056 (1)
Box 59 - Field Books, 6960-7056 (2) and 7057-7199 (1)
Box 60 - Field Books, 7057-7199 (2) and 7200-7304
Box 61 - Field Books, 7435-7438; 4580-7669 and 7670-7759
Box 62 - Field Books, 7760-7839; 7840-7929; 8007-8083 and 8084-8153 (1)
Box 63 - Field Books, 8084-8153 (2) and 8154-8235
Box 64 - Field Books, 8236-8299 and 8300-8360 (1)
Box 65 - Field Books, 8300-8360 (2); 8361-8425; 8426-8486; 8558-8623 and 8624-8689
Box 66 - Field Books, 8690-8773 and 8774-8849
Box 67 - Field Books, 8850-8903 and 8904-9035 (1)
Box 68 - Field Books, 8904-9035 (2) and 9036-9116 (1)
Box 69 - Field Books, 9036-9116 (2); 9117-9139; and 9140-9200 (1)
Box 70 - Field Books, 9140-9200 (2) and 9201-9280 (1)
Box 71 - Field Books, 9201-9280 (2); 9281-9360 and 9361-9440 (1)
Box 72 - Field Books, 9361-9440 (2) and 9441-9520 (1)
Box 73 - Field Books, 9441-9520 (2); 9521-9599 and 9600-9680 (1)
Box 74 - Field Books, 9600-9680 (2); 9681-9760 (1)
Box 75 - Field Books, 9681-9760 (2); 9761-9840 and 9841-9920
Box 76 - Field Books, 9921-9999 and 10000-10080 (1)
Box 77 - Field Books, 10000-10080 (2); 10081-10160 and 10161-10240 (1)
Box 78 - Field Books, 10161-10240 (2) and 10241-10320 (1)
Box 79 - Field Books, 10241-10320 (2) and 10321-10489 (1)
Box 80 - Field Books, 10321-10489 (2) and 10490-10599 (1)
Box 81 - Field Books, 10490-10599 (2) and 10600-10699 (1)
Box 82 - Field Books, 10600-10699 (2); 10700-10799 and 10800-10899 (1)
Box 83 - Field Books, 10800-10899 (2) and 10900-10999 (1)
Box 84 - Field Books, 10900-10999 (2)
Box 85 - Field Books, 12000-12083 and 12084-12175 (1)
Box 86 - Field Books, 12084-12175 (2) and 12176-12250 (1)
Box 87 - Field Books, 12176-12250 92) and 12251-12333 (1)
Box 88 - Field Books, 12251-12333 (2) and 12334-12379 (1)
Box 89 - Field Books, 12334-12379 (2)

PDF Inventory of field books in Series 1 (incomplete).

Series 2 - Profiles and Drawings

Box 1 - Atchison & Nebraska; Burlington & Missouri River Railroad in Nebraska; Beaver Valley; Beaver Valley & Denver
Box 2 - Big Horn
Box 3 - Big Horn Southern
Box 4 - Black Hills & Fort Pierre; Burlington & Colorado; Burlington Kansas & Southwestern
Box 5 - Chicago Burlington & Quincy
Box 6 - Cheyenne & Burlington; Colorado & Wyoming; Denver & Montana
Box 7 - Grand Island & Northern Wyoming
Box 8 - Grand Island & Wyoming Central
Box 9 - Lincoln & Black Hills; Lincoln & Northwestern; Lockett Pipeline; Midland Pacific
Box 10 - Montana & Wyoming Eastern
Box 11 - Nebraska & Colorado; Nebraska Railway
Box 12 - Nebraska Wyoming & Western
Box 13 - Oxford & Kansas; Republican Valley; Republican Valley & Wyoming
Box 14 - Eastern Wyoming; Sioux City & Western; and all others marked oversize
Box 15 - A O & L RW; Atchison & Nebraska; Burlington & Missouri River Railroad in Nebraska
Box 16 - Big Horn; Black Hills & Fort Pierre; Burlington & Colorado; Burlington & Southwestern; Colorado & Wyoming; Denver & Montana; Denver, Utah & Pacific
Box 17 - Chicago Burlington & Quincy
Box 18 - Grand Island & Northern Wyoming; Grand Island & Wyoming Central; Grand Island & Wyoming Central in Dakota; Kansas City & Omaha
Box 19 - Lincoln & Black Hills; Lincoln & Northwestern; Nebraska & Colorado; Nebraska, Wyoming & Western; Not Identifiable; Omaha & Southwestern
Box 20 - Republican Valley; Republican Valley & Wyoming; Republican Valley, Kansas & Southwestern; Wyoming Central

Excel Inventory of profile drawings in Series 2 (incomplete).

Series 3 - R.O.W. Abstract Books

Book 2 - Concordia (Kansas) to Odell Jct (Nebr)
Book 6 - Lincoln (Nebr) to Central City (Nebr) via Germantown and Aurora
Book 8 - Superior (Nebr) to Dewitt (Nebr)
Book 9 - Edgar (Nebr) to Elwood (Nebr)
Book 10 - N & C RR: Kenesaw (Nebr) to Oxford (Nebr); R V RR: Hastings (Nebr) to Lester (Nebr)
Book 11 - Crete (Nebr) to Wymore (Nebr); Aurora (Nebr) to Hastings (Nebr); Aurora (Nebr) to Grand Island (Nebr); Chester (Nebr) to Fairmont (Nebr)
Book 12 - Nemaha (Nebr) to Beatrice (Nebr) & Nemaha (Nebr) to Salem (Nebr)
Book 13 - N & C RR: Kenesaw (Nebr) to Oxford (Nebr); R V RR: Hastings (Nebr) to Lester (Nebr). Also Lester (Nebr) to Oxford (Nebr)
Book 14 - Lester (Nebr) to Oxford (Nebr)
Book 14A - Bartley (Nebr) to Nebraska State Line
Book 15 - Lester (Nebr) to Section 6, T1S, R4W
Book 18 - Lincoln (Nebr) to Columbus (Nebr)
Book 20 - Central City (Nebr) to Ericson (Nebr); Palmer (Nebr) to Farwell (Nebr)
Book 20A - Ashton (Nebr) to Sargent (Nebr); Sargent (Nebr) to Brewster (Nebr); Burwell (Nebr) to Greeley Center (Nebr)
Book 24 - Grand Island (Nebr) to Linscott (Nebr)
Book 25 - Grand Island (Nebr) to Linscott (Nebr); Dunning (Nebr) to Ashby (Nebr); Ashby (Nebr) to Rutland (Nebr)
Book 32 - Eustis (Nebraska) to State Line (Colorado-Nebraska)
Book 33 - State Line (Colorado-Nebraska) to Cheyenne (Wyo)
Book 37 - Benedict (Nebr) to York (Nebr)
Book 38 - Alma (Nebr) to Alma Jct (Nebr)
Book 39 - O'Neill (Nebr) to Sioux City (Iowa)

PDF Inventory of R.O.W. Abstract Books in Series 3.

Series 4 - Miscellaneous

Box 89 (with Field books)
Folder

  1. Misc. correspondence and clippings regarding the blizzard of 1948-1949
  2. Fireman rescues child, Beaver City, Neb., 1925
  3. Train accidents, etc.
  4. Train accidents, etc.
  5. Red Cross Canteen, Omaha depot
  6. Employee seniority lists, ca. 1955-1957 (2007.0069)

Volume

  1. "The Plattsmouth Bridge: A Report to Charles E. Perkins, President of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad by George S. Morison, Chief Engineer of the Plattsmouth Bridge," 1882

Blueprint showing the Lincoln Freight Yard (see oversize)

 

TMM/cj   11-12-2013
Encoded TMM   12-17-2013

 

For additional information about this collection, please contact our Library Staff.


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Last updated 17 December 2013

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