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Henderson Avenue looking north, Poplar Bluff, Missouri, 1950 - Craig Meador Collection

MoPac Right of Way -
Buildings & Yards

From the Missouri River valley of Omaha south to the High Plains of Texas, from the open expanses of Colorado to the crowded streets of St. Louis, it's the land were the prairie skyscrapers still stand - there's more out here than corn crops, cows, and dusty flatland. Farm country, grain elevators and branch lines lie scattered across the prairie grass that lies in Missouri Pacific country.

Trace the path of the rail line - all up and down the MoPac right of ways - in service, abandoned, preserved or forgotten.




A view of the Poplar Bluff, Missouri roundhouse in 1910's - Craig Meador Collection

M&I enginehouse at Ste Genevieve, MO with M&I caboose sitting on the lead. - David Beckermann Collection

Crossing along the MoPac's Crete branchline
Steam plumes rise under the moonlight in this sentimental scene of the MoPac roundhouse in Falls City, Nebraska. The town still is a major stopping point along the mainline, halfway between Kansas City and Omaha - from a postcard


click on the thumbnails to see a larger image

Hoxie, Arkansas
- looking north on the Hoxie Sub with the interlocker and an old building that may have been Mopac or Frisco..not sure..the old Frisco line is now BNSF into Memphis (Thayer Sub). - Craig Meador Photo

Pence Tower in Momence, Illinois - on 29 April 90. This was the Conrail (PCINYC Kankakee Belt Line) crossing. The Operator was a Conrail employee. The tracks in the foreground are the Chicago Sub northbound (closest to the tower) and southbound (closest to bottom edge of the photo). The Conrail Kankakee Secondary is behind the tower where the train order stand is located. The wye connecting the MoPac and Conrail is to the right and behind the tower out of view. - © JD Santucci Photo

The wooden tower that was here was destroyed in a wreck many years previous, when a southbound C&EI train derailed wiping it out. The NYC replaced it with this structure which was demolished in the mid 90's when it was closed. On Conrail this tower was called MG.

The Milwaukee Road also used to come through here on the Conrail trackage. Their Delmar (a couple of miles east of here) to Joliet Branch connected with the NYC and later Penn Central and Conrail just east of the tower. The lines split again just west of the crossing. This saved the costs involved in maintaining yet another set of diamonds at the crossing. The Milwaukee ceased operations through here in 1980 with MoPac and Conrail taking over the industry work they had in Momence.

Jay Tower, Chicago Heights, Illinois - looking north. Pole line and tracks to very far right edge of the picture are MoPac. The tracks running across the photo is the double track EJ&E Gary, IN-East Joliet, IL main line. - © JD Santucci Photo

Jay Tower - as viewed looking west-northwest. MoPac mains in foreground. - © JD Santucci Photo

Jay Tower - as viewed looking north with clear view of both main tracks of MoPac Chicago Subdivision. The east leg of the wye is too my right (out of view) and the west leg to the left (also out of view). This tower closed in 1994 with control given to the EJ&E Control Operator at their Kirk Yard in Gary, IN. All three photos 29 April 90. - © JD Santucci Photo

Still another view of Jay Tower in Chicago Heights - this time looking south. The EJ&E westbound and eastbound mains (near to far) are in front of the tower with the MoPac to the left. On the Jay this was called Chicago Heights Tower and the Operator was an EJ&E employee. 29 April 90 - © JD Santucci Photo

East Fuel Track - as viewed facing north at Yard Center Diesel. 1990 - © JD Santucci Photo

View looking east towards Yard Center Diesel fuel tracks - GP38-2 2234 is on the west fuel track and former C&EI double-eagle SD40-2 3151 is on the east fuel track. Normally, outbound power was set onto the west fuel track when it was ready to be set out for an outbound crew. The power would be pulled south of the facility onto track 10 or 11. - © JD Santucci Photo

Yard Center East Fuel Track - with West Fuel track in foreground facing southeast. 1987 - © JD Santucci Photo

Yard Center West and East Fuel Tracks - as viewed facing northeast. GTW power is from inbound GTW train 385. - © JD Santucci Photo

Yard Center Diesel in April 1990. This is a view of the south end of the facility. The track closest to the camera is track 11, to its right is 10, the 9 and the crossover to the sand track where locomotives are turned in at the south end of the diesel shop facility. Track 8 is the run-through track that goes through the roundhouse itself (where the large open door is). It can accommodate four, four axle engines and three, six axle engines, four if you allow part of them to stick out the doors. The UP power is on the east fuel track and the west fuel track is clear. Out of view is the switch to the wye that comes off track 11. This is where power is turned. - © JD Santucci Photo

On the north end of the house were two additional service tracks, 7 and 6. Both of them were stub-ended tracks that went onto the house. A single unit could be service on each one. There was a drop table on both tracks that allowed for such chores as changing out wheels and traction motors or replacing broken springs.

Other repairs like power assembly change outs could be performed at Yard Center Diesel. Minor wreck damage, daily, monthly and 92-day inspections were also performed here. Brake shoe change out and piston travel adjustment was handled as well.

The storage tanks visible in to the left are for lube oil storage. The fuel storage tanks are to the left and behind where I was standing when I shot this picture. The object that resembles an overhead crane above the fuel tracks is actually for sanding locomotives. The yellow structure above the crane is a sand tower. Two old C&EI sand cars were used to store sand.

Out of view but to the left of the sand tower is the oil track. Locomotives are frequently held here in between assignments.

The small building on the right is a storage facility. The RIP track is further to the right attached to the diesel shop. It has two run through tracks.

Shot of the Salem, Illinois fuel tracks - in April 1983. - © JD Santucci Photo

View looking north of Salem, Illinois main line fuel station - Main track is to the right, siding to the left. Salem was the crew change point for train crews. - © JD Santucci Photo

26th Street yard office in South Chicago Heights, Illinois - In its heyday, the Clerk and Yardmaster worked in the offices by the two windows on the far right. The train and engines crews had their quarters at the next two windows and MofW and the Signal Maintainer used the offices towards the left. July 1993. - © JD Santucci Photo

Intermodal facility at Yard Center - Before this facility was built, this was three separate switching yards; 1, 2 and 3 yard. The Bulktainers and flats to the right are part of what is left of 1 Yard. The tall brick structure on the left is the Yard Center offices, once the Chicago Division headquarters. Just above it, the light colored structure is the RIP track. This view is looking north from Sibley Boulevard that spans the entire yard. - © JD Santucci Photo

Yard Center - This is looking south from Sibley Blvd towards 8 and 9 yards at Yard Center. The track the engine us pulling the flats out onto is the southbound. To the left is the northbound, then 8 Yard lead which goes into 16 tracks, 303, 304,1-14 (right to left, 303 and 304 have cars on them and then sarts track 1 and up). To the left of that is track 15,16 (with the cars on it) and 17. To the left of that are tracks 305 through 308 and then all of 9 Yard. - © JD Santucci Photo

Yard Center - The two main tracks are in the middle of this shot looking north. To the right is 8 Yard lead, then 15 and 16, both with cars on them. On the left where the trailers and flats are sitting is the remnants of 1 Yard. Where 8 Yard lead ties into the northbound here is an interlocking called l45th Street which had crossovers between the mains as well. Photos 35-37 were shot April 1990. - © JD Santucci Photo

The South Tower at Yard Center in June 1986. This was during the period Yard Center was closed as a major classification yard. The side in the shade faces the yard which sits to the north. If you look close on the shady side and the sunny side, you see the location of where the Mopac buzzsaw and the L&N rectangles were mounted. Several photographs in Patrick C. Dorm's "Missouri Pacific Freight Train Services and Equipment" were taken from the top level. - © JD Santucci Photo

The same tower in 1990 after Yard Center was reopened as a major classification facility. A fresh coat of paint and UP shields have been applied. - © JD Santucci Photo

This overpass clings to its C&EI heritage in the April 1990 photo. To this very day, it still has its C&EI lettering and has been repainted since this picture was taken. - © JD Santucci Photo

MP Advertisement - painted on exterior wall of a building in downtown St. Louis Missouri. Photo taken in 1979. - Mike Cafferata Photo

The advertisement reads: "WEST SOUTH SOUTHWEST - MODERN TRAINS LOW FARES - MISSOURI PACIFIC - ALL (???) ALWAYS - 'A Service Institution'"

East Hump at Neff Yard, Kansas City, Missouri - a pair of RS-3's are setting on the crest of the hump in March 1966. From the looks of the picture they must have been in hump service at the time. A current shot of the same location would look much the same with the exception of yellow SD38-2's (ex-MoPac SD40-2's) working the hump (thanks to former MP switchman Kevin Love for the info). - Lee Berglund photo, T. Greuter collection

A view of Missouri Pacific's Centennial Yard, Texas from the Yard Masters tower in 1984. Centennial Yard is formerly known as Lancaster Yard from the Texas & Pacific days. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

A look at Missouri Pacific's Yard Master Tower in Fort Worth, Texas in 1984. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo


I-GN Railway shops in 1986 - Jay Glenewinkel Photo/Collection

Tower 92 at the diamonds of the International & Great Northern (MP) and MKT in New Braunfels, Texas. - Photo courtesy of the New Braunfels Railway Modelers Historical Society

Looking North at Tower 92 on the International & Great Northern Railway in the 1950s. New Braunfels, Texas. - Photo courtesy of the New Braunfels Railway Modelers Historical Society

Tower 206 in San Marcos, Texas interchanges the Missouri Pacific with the MKT. It is seen here in 1985. - Photographer unknown/Jay Glenewinkel Collection

Cast iron sawbucks in Louisville, Nebraska still mark an old MoPac crossing. 4/28/01 - T. Greuter photo

Contributing Photographers:
JD Santucci, Craig Meador, Mike Cafferata, Jay Glenewinkel, David Beckermann Collection, New Braunfels Railway Modelers Historical Society, Lee Berglund
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 l Last Update to this page: 16 April, 2008
          All images & text 2000-2008 T. Greuter / Screaming Eagles, unless otherwise noted. All Rights Reserved.
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