[The Weatherford, Mineral Wells, Northwestern Railroad Depot]

Description

The Weatherford, Mineral Wells, and Northwestern (WMW&NW) Railroad began operations October 1,1891, and it owned two locomotives. It was chartered in 1889 to build a road from Weatherford to Mineral Wells--about twenty-five miles. in 1895, it had earned $15,561 in passenger revenue, and $38,070 in freight. The Texas & Pacific Railway bought out the railroad in 1902, and extended the line eighteen miles to include the town of Graford. It built this depot shortly thereafter to replace a former wooden structure that had been destroyed by fire. The rail line had a colorful history, operating through World War II and ...

Creation Information

Creator: Unknown. 1990?.

Context

This photograph is part of the collection entitled: A. F. Weaver Collection and was provided by Boyce Ditto Public Library to The Portal to Texas History, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 1306 times , with 14 in the last month . More information about this photograph can be viewed below.

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Boyce Ditto Public Library

Located in Mineral Wells, the Library holds over 50,000 materials and is dedicated to providing free access and services for the community in a friendly and professional manner. Because of the work of the Boyce Ditto Public Library, residents of Palo Pinto County have access to books, online resources, events, and much more.

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Description

The Weatherford, Mineral Wells, and Northwestern (WMW&NW) Railroad began operations October 1,1891, and it owned two locomotives. It was chartered in 1889 to build a road from Weatherford to Mineral Wells--about twenty-five miles. in 1895, it had earned $15,561 in passenger revenue, and $38,070 in freight. The Texas & Pacific Railway bought out the railroad in 1902, and extended the line eighteen miles to include the town of Graford. It built this depot shortly thereafter to replace a former wooden structure that had been destroyed by fire.
The rail line had a colorful history, operating through World War II and into the 1990's. Construction of an extension of the line to the city of Oran was completed in 1907, which connected it to Graford.
In 1912 two McKeen motor coaches (called "Doodlebugs" by the locals)were added. These were self-contained, 200 Horsepower, 70-foot long, gasoline-powered, 80-passenger coaches which provided service between Mineral Wells, Weatherford, Fort Worth and Dallas. A round trip took less than six hours, and two "Doodlebugs" provided service in each direction every three hours.
In 1913, the Gulf Texas and Western Railroad, building south from Seymour, Texas, began operations over the WMW&NW line from Salesville to Mineral Wells, thus connecting the cities of Seymour, Olney, Jacksboro, Graford, Oran, Salesville, Mineral Wells, and Weatherford with daily round-trip service to Dallas.
The demise of the railroad was slow. In 1928, passenger traffic had declined to a point that passenger service was discontinued, and did not resume until the nation began mobilizing for World War II in 1940. Nearly a half million troops (429,966) passed through the depot during the war years in transit to and from Ft. Wolters training base. In 1936, twelve miles of line between Salesville and Graford was abandoned. Only freight traffic was maintained by 1945. The WMW&NW was merged with the Missouri Railroad Company (The successor to Texas and Pacific) in 1988. The City of Mineral Wells bought the twenty-two and eight-tenths miles of track to Weatherford October 1, 1989. It was the last operator, and kept the road open for freight traffic, for the benefit of local businesses.
The passenger depot was restored after The Mineral Wells and Eastern ceased operations in May of 1992, when Mineral Wells retracted its operating subsidy. It is now [2008] the offices of the Elliott Waldren Abstract Company, and lawyer George Gault.

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Collections

This photograph is part of the following collection of related materials.

A. F. Weaver Collection

This colorful panorama covers the founding of Mineral Wells through its mercurial growth as a resort center and army town up to the present. It features photos from local historian and photographer A.F. Weaver as well as local families and established research sources.

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Creation Date

  • 1990?

None Date

  • November 19, 2007

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Added to The Portal to Texas History

  • Nov. 29, 2007, 6:41 p.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Feb. 18, 2017, 5:16 p.m.

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Citations, Rights, Re-Use

[The Weatherford, Mineral Wells, Northwestern Railroad Depot], photograph, 1990?; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29853/: accessed February 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Boyce Ditto Public Library.