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 Louisville and Nashville Railroad

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tranthuongbn



Posts : 81
Join date : 2010-12-25

PostSubject: Louisville and Nashville Railroad   Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:40 am

Its first line extended barely south of Louisville, Kentucky, and in fact it took until 1859 to span the 180-odd miles to its second namesake city of Nashville. There were about 250 miles (400 km) of track in the system by the outbreak of the Civil War, and its strategic location, spanning the Union/Confederate lines, made it of great interest to both governments.
During the Civil War, different parts of the network were pressed into service by both armies at various times, and considerable damage from wear, battle, and sabotage occurred. However, the company benefited from being based in the Union state of Kentucky, and the fact that Nashville fell to Union forces within the first year of the war and remained in their hands for its duration. It profited from Northern haulage contracts for troops and supplies, paid in sound Federal "greenbacks," as opposed to the rapidly-depreciating Confederate dollars. After the war, it found that its Southern competitors were devastated to the point of collapse, and the general economic depression meant that labor and materials to repair its roads could be had fairly cheaply.
Buoyed by these fortunate circumstances, the firm began an expansion that never really stopped. Within thirty years the network reached from Ohio and Missouri to Louisiana and Florida. By 1884, the firm had such importance that it was included in the Dow Jones Transportation Average, the first American stock market index. It was so active a customer of the Rogers Locomotive and Machine Works, the country's second largest locomotive maker, that in 1879 the firm presented L&N with a free locomotive as a thank-you bonus.

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