The Dallas and Greenville Railway Company was chartered on February 15, 1886, to build a railroad and telegraph line from Greenville to Dallas. The initial capital was $800,000, and the business office was in Dallas. Members of the first board of directors included H. M. Hoxie, D. S. H. Smith, and George C. Smith, all of St. Louis; A. W. Hunter, Joseph Herrin, and G. J. Gooch, all of Palestine; and James A. Baker of Houston. The road had its beginnings when the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad Company, owned by Jay Gould, decided to renew its program of construction in Texas. The Katy already served Dallas and Greenville, but these cities were not connected, and the "black belt" country between them was productive. Fifty-two miles of track connecting Dallas and Greenville were completed by December 2, 1886. On that date the line was sold to the Missouri, Kansas and Texas, and subsequently deeded to the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railway Company of Texas on November 18, 1891.