History of Memphis : the History of the City of Memphis, Being a Compilation of the Most Important Documents and Historical Events Connected With the Purchase of Its Territory, Laying Off of the City and Early Settlement


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MEMPHIS RAILROADS IN EARLY DAYS. The first Railroad terminating at this point was the Memphis andLaGrange, commenced in 1838. She only succeeded in laying six miles of track with bar iron, and putting a locomotive and some old fashioned English cars on, done a sort of pleasure business for several months. Some ten years later the Memphis and Charles- ton Railroad purchased the charter, etc., and the latter road was built toLaGrange on the line staked out for the former. Mention is made of this road in my story of the Memphis Batture. The following communication appears in the Railroad Record (Cincinnati) of 1854, which contains foresight and suggestions which have by no means lost their force, and are therefore deemed worth}" of reproduction: “ Memphis.—We begin with Memphis, because it is the most promising town in the southwest. Memphis lies on one of only three bluffs on the Lower Mississippi, where it is possible, without unnecessary expense for artificial work, to build a great town. It is almost 280 miles from the mouth of the Ohio, and 730 miles, by water, from Cincinnati. It is, however, only 430 miles on an air line, and a railroad to Louisville and Cincinnati will reduce the distance run to’ less than 500 miles, and the time to twenty hours. From Memphis, also, a rail- road is partially completed, and doubtless will be finished, to Charleston, S. C., connecting it with the Central South. Memphis being also precisely east of Little Rock, it may be, and will be, connected with it by a line of railroad, which shall bring within its commercial influence the

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