The Choctaw Route

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The Choctaw Route: History Through the Miles by Dr. Barton Jennings

The Rock Island Railroad is one of those railroads that many have heard about, but few know the details. In particular, little information is available about the southern routes of this large granger system.

One of these was the Choctaw Route, almost 900 miles of mainline from the Old South at Memphis, Tennessee, to the Wild Southwest at Tucumcari, New Mexico. The Choctaw Route started as an effort to make Memphis the rail destination for freight from the west. The route crossed swamps, mountains, high prairie, and desert. Over the more than 100 years since the line’s initial construction, the Choctaw Route served as a conduit for the movement of agricultural products, timber and lumber, livestock, oil, coal and minerals, machinery, and the ordinary products needed by the communities along its route. While much of the railroad is gone today, parts survive, operated by railroads large and small.

This book is for those who want to know more about the Rock Island Railroad’s Choctaw Route, and the almost twenty companies involved with building and operating the line. It is written as if the reader has left Memphis and is riding the line westward, helping to answer the questions of “Where are we and what once happened here?”

Information on the Choctaw Route’s history and current status, as well as a mile-by-mile route guide, are included. Enjoy this review of the Choctaw Route, one of the Rock Island Railroad’s mighty fine lines.

This is the 12th book in the History Through the Miles series.

ISBN: 978-1-7327888-6-2

Retail price: $39.99

Available through Amazon, Ron's Books, Ingram, and your local bookstore.