The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, often referred to as the Santa Fe or AT&SF, was one of the larger railroads in the United States. It was first chartered in February 1859 to serve the cities of Atchison and Topeka, Kansas, and Santa Fe, New Mexico. The railroad reached the KansasColorado border in 1873 and Pueblo, Colorado, in 1876. In the 1880s it creatively began building trackage in California through various paper companies and assorted agreements; the original charter did not provide for expansion into the Golden State. To create a demand for its services, the railroad set up real estate offices and sold farmland from the land grants that it was awarded by Congress.

The Santa Fe was a pioneer in intermodal freight transport; at various times, it operated an airline, the short-lived Santa Fe Skyway, and the fleet of Santa Fe Railroad Tugboats. Its bus line extended passenger transportation to areas not accessible by rail, and ferryboats on the San Francisco Bay allowed travelers to complete their westward journeys to the Pacific Ocean.

The railroad officially ceased operations on December 31, 1996, when it merged with the Burlington Northern Railroad to form the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway.



Book Details




6"x9" hardcover with Sepia tone dustjacket


1995 expanded edition (1920)



About The Author

Glenn D. Bradley

This rare book has provided the historical background for hundreds of subsequent volumes on the Santa Fe Railroad. The first edition (1920), however, did not actually contain Bradley’s complete original manuscript – seven chapters dealing with some of the company’s dark receivership period were omitted. This new special “Limited Edition” reunites the omitted chapters with the 1920 edition and an expanded and updated Appendix of statistics and corporate material, including black & white photographs, add to this history of the Santa Fe making it a more interesting, dramatic and well-rounded story of a railroad at the apex of expansion.


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