• 150th Anniversary of the Completion of the Transcontinental Railroad

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    2019 will be a big year for the Pacific Locomotive Association and our Niles Canyon Railway.

    The Pacific Locomotive Association will be celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Completion of the Transcontinental Railroad all summer long in 2019, beginning with a commemoration of the May 10th, 1869 “Golden Spike” connection at Promontory, Utah between the Union Pacific and the Central Pacific. Every weekend from then will have a celebration theme, with at least one major weekend event each month, culminating with the celebration of the true final completion on September 6th, 1869 when the Last Link of the Transcontinental Railroad was opened from Sacramento to Oakland.

    The Niles Canyon Railway is the only railroad that runs on the original and best preserved alignment of the Transcontinental Railroad, now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Whether it is the original stone retaining walls built in 1865, the original square Western Union telegraph poles (installed circa 1861) to the later ‘semaphore’ signaling improvements installed in the early 1900s and revamped to modern ‘searchlight’ signals in the 1950s, as well as the connections with Industry and Agriculture that grew up along the Right-Of-Way, the entire history of the corridor will be celebrated. (Little Known Fact: The Southern Pacific Railroad which operated on our ROW,  upgraded their Communications Network in 1978, replacing microwave towers with fiber optic cables along their ROW, and formed a new division known as “SPRINT", an acronym for Southern Pacific Railroad Internal Network Telecommunication – yes, that Sprint) 

    This last link is historically important for the surrounding communities we serve, as their very existence and sustained growth was predicated on the railroad passing through them. It is also historically important for the Railroad Preservation Community locally and nationwide. 

    Visit www.ncry.org to view the Calendar of Events for this celebration. Complete Details of these events will be found here as we finalize them.

    Learn more about the 150th anniversary