Missouri Pacific Corporation certificate 1954
Nice MoPac stock with a great vignette of a modern steam locomotive. Issued and cancelled. Dated 1954.
The Missouri Pacific Railroad (MP), commonly abbreviated MoPac, was one of the first railroads in the United States west of the Mississippi River. MoPac was a Class I railroad growing from dozens of predecessors and mergers, including the St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railway (SLIMS), Texas and Pacific Railway (TP), Chicago and Eastern Illinois Railroad (C&EI), St. Louis, Brownsville and Mexico Railway (SLBM), Kansas, Oklahoma and Gulf Railway (KO&G), Midland Valley Railroad (MV), San Antonio, Uvalde and Gulf Railroad (SAU&G), Gulf Coast Lines (GC), International-Great Northern Railroad (IGN), New Orleans, Texas and Mexico Railway (NOTM), Missouri-Illinois Railroad (MI), as well as the small Central Branch Railway (an early predecessor of MP in Kansas and south central Nebraska), and joint ventures such as the Alton and Southern Railroad (AS).
On January 8, 1980, the Union Pacific Railroad agreed to buy the Missouri Pacific Railroad. Lawsuits filed by competing railroads delayed approval of the merger until September 13, 1982. After the Supreme Court denied a trial to the Southern Pacific, the merger took effect on December 22, 1982. However, due to outstanding bonds of the Missouri Pacific, the merger with Union Pacific become official only on January 1, 1997.
On July 4, 1851, at St. Louis, ground was broken on the Pacific Railroad, the earlier predecessor of the Missouri Pacific Railroad. The first section of track was completed in 1852; in 1865, it was the first railroad in Kansas City, after construction was interrupted by the American Civil War. In 1872, the Pacific Railroad was reorganized as the Missouri Pacific Railway by new investors after a railroad debt crisis. Because of corporate ties extending back to the Pacific Railroad, Missouri Pacific at one time advertised itself as being The First Railroad West of the Mississippi.
From 1879 Missouri Pacific was under the control of successful but controversial New York financier Jay Gould until his death in 1892. Gould developed a system extending through Colorado, Nebraska, Arkansas, Texas, and Louisiana. His son George Gould inherited control upon his father's death. The younger Gould lost control of the company after it declared bankruptcy in 1915. In 1917 the line was merged with the St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railway (SLIMS) and reorganized as the Missouri Pacific Railroad. Missouri Pacific later acquired or gained a controlling interest in other lines in Texas, including the Gulf Coast Lines, International-Great Northern Railroad, and the Texas and Pacific Railway.
In 1928, the Missouri Pacific Corporation was formed as a holding entity. MoPac declared bankruptcy again in 1933, during the Great Depression, and entered into trusteeship. The company was reorganized and the trusteeship ended in 1956.
By the 1980s the system would own 11,469 miles of rail line over 11 states bounded by Chicago to the east, Pueblo, Colorado, in the west, north to Omaha, south to the U.S.-Mexico border in Laredo, Texas, and southeast along the Gulf seaports of Louisiana and Texas. MoPac operated a fleet of more than 1,500 diesel locomotives, almost all purchased within the previous 10 years. Under the leadership of Downing B. Jenks, who became president and chief executive in 1961 the company became a pioneer in the early days of computer-guided rail technology. It was a major hauler of grain, TOFC (Trailer on Flat Car), coal, ore, autos and dry goods. At the time of their mega-merger in 1982 the MoPac owned newer locomotives, more locomotives and operated more track than partner Union Pacific Railroad.
On December 22, 1982 the Missouri Pacific merged with Union Pacific and Western Pacific Railroad companies to create the largest system in its day, the "Pacific Rail Systems," under the holding company Union Pacific Corporation, but maintained its own corporate and commercial identity. On December 1, 1989, the Missouri Kansas Texas and the Galveston, Houston & Henderson were merged away into the Missouri Pacific after acquisition by the Union Pacific in 1988. By 1994 all motive power of the Missouri Pacific was repainted and on January 1, 1997, its corporate and commercial identity was officially merged away into the Union Pacific. UP continued to use the MoPac headquarters building at 210 N. 13th St. in downtown St. Louis for its customer service center until February 15, 2005. The former MoPac building is undergoing rehab as condominiums and is now known as Park Pacific.