Virginian in 1909

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Sat Apr 4 10:46:35 EDT 2009

Bluefield Daily Telegraph
June 30, 1909

Substantial Progress Said to Have Been Made Toward Completing The Railway System

For more than a year plans have been discussed by the Hocking Valley and Virginian railways for the construction of a bridge across the Kanawha river at Deepwater, in Kanawha county, where the Kanawha & Michigan meets the latter road and, while the public is not informed as to the status of these negotiations, it is asserted by those interested that substantial progress has been made toward connecting the two systems.
The final disposition of westbound traffic of the Virginian railway after it arrives at Deepwater is a matter of great interest to the railroad world, for here is a high-class road, costing $70,000 a mile, which within the course of a few years, will have to earn perhaps $15,000 gross per mile to be able to pay the interest on its $33,000,000 first mortgage bonds on their debt. This Hocking Valley system, without an actual trunk line reaching to tidewater, and the Virginian railway, without a trunk line reaching to the lakes, meeting at Deepwater (a point above a central line between ocean and lakes) seems to present mutual advantages which cannot but result in close relations between the two companies.
It is the belief of bankers interested in the situation and influential in shaping its further development, that if a traffic alliance should come about, the business of the Hocking Valley would immediately assure the Virginian its fixed charges, while the growing business of the latter would in time make the net earning capacity of the Hocking Valley and the Kanawha & Michigan, its subsidiary, equal to that of almost any of the great railroad systems.
[A Hocking Valley website states that the C&O gained control of the Hocking Valley in March 1910, which would have given the Hocking Valley a route to Tidewater without involving the Virginian. The Virginian's Kanawha River bridge was built, but not until 1930, which was after the Kanawha & Michigan was separated from the C&O and became part of the NYC, according to a K&M website.]

Gordon Hamilton
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