72 A THUMB-NAIL H isrTOY OF
should be allowed to come back to life just to see
what has grown from that first shovel of dirt he
threw up on that January morning, 1858.
The real importance and magnitude of the railroad
situation is shown much better by the terminal
facilities and trackage of the roads within the city
limits. Placed end to end these sidetracks and
switches would make a line of railroad 275 miles
long, or just about the total length of the Houston
and Texas Central railroad.
The Houston yards of the Southern Pacific road
are the largest in the Southwest, having a trackage
of 181 miles and a capacity of 10,000 cars. The
Harriman tracks in Houston accommodate 128 different
industrial plants, handle over 50,000 cars
monthly and employ in that work 547 men. The
round houses contain 72 stalls and 1,600 men are
employed in the round house and shops of this company.
Twenty-two switch engines are kept constantly
in use in these yards, taking cars to and from
the industrial plants and in making up trains.
The Southern Pacific has 788 switches in the
yards here. Among the other properties of the
Southern Pacific are water tanks, for the locomotives,
with a capacity of 100,000 gallons, and fuel
oil tanks with a capacity of 225,000 barrels. The
pay roll of the Harriman interests in Houston is
The Houston Belt and Terminal company's terminals
aggregate trackage of about fifty-five miles.
Among other properties of this company, in addi-
Young, Samuel Oliver. A thumb-nail history of the city of Houston, Texas, from its founding in 1836 to the year 1912. Houston, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24649/. Accessed May 21, 2013.