Eastland, Wichita Falls and Gulf Railroad

By: H. Allen Anderson

Type: General Entry

Published: 1952

Updated: August 1, 1995

The Eastland, Wichita Falls and Gulf Railroad Company was chartered on December 12, 1918, to lay track from May in Brown County to Newcastle in Young County, a distance of ninety-six miles. The capital was $500,000, and the business office was in Eastland. Members of the first board of directors included William B. Munson, Sr., of Grayson County, Oscar B. Colquitt and J. E. Butler of Dallas County, B. S. Walker and Fred W. Frost of Stephens County, and Earl Conner, J. H. Cheatham, H. P. Brelsford, C. U. Conner, and R. E. Sikes, all of Eastland County. The line was financed by Richard T. Ringling, of circus fame, and was known for a time as the Ringling, Eastern and Gulf Railway. The road was constructed during the height of the Ranger oil boom and started at Mangum, where it connected with the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railway. By November 1920 twenty-eight miles had been completed to Breckwalker, where the road linked up with the Wichita Falls, Ranger, and Fort Worth Railroad. A connection was also made with the Texas and Pacific at Eastland. The line was never extended to Newcastle or May. Between June 1921 and March 1922 the Eastland, Wichita Falls and Gulf was leased to the Wichita Falls, Ranger and Fort Worth, but afterward it was operated independently with headquarters at Eastland. In 1926 the Eastland was listed as a Class III road by the Railroad Commission; the company owned three locomotives and three passenger cars and earned $1,241 in passenger revenue, $55,214 in freight revenue, and $408 in other revenue. Earnings for 1931 were $41,558. In the early 1940s Samuel Butler served as president of the line, which was abandoned in 1944 due to diminishing profits.

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

H. Allen Anderson, “Eastland, Wichita Falls and Gulf Railroad,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed September 27, 2021, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/eastland-wichita-falls-and-gulf-railroad.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

August 1, 1995