The Gulf, Beaumont and Great Northern Railroad was chartered on July 30, 1898. It was planned to begin about a mile south of Sabine Pass on the Gulf of Mexico in Jefferson County and to run north to Paris in Lamar County, for a distance of about 350 miles. The capital was $350,000. The principal place of business was Beaumont. The members of the first board of directors were Nathaniel D. Silsbee of Boston, Massachusetts; James Irvine of New York City; John H. Kirby of Houston; and William A. Fletcher, William Wiess, Mark Wiess, W. S. Davidson, William W. Wilson, and W. C. Averill, all of Jefferson County. In 1901 fifteen miles of track was built between Roganville and milepost 15. Between 1902 and 1904 another sixty-three miles was built, to Center. The GB&GN was leased to the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe on December 1, 1903, and the railroad was operated by the GC&SF from 1903 to 1948. The GB&GN, the Gulf, Beaumont and Kansas City, and the Texas and Gulf formed a through line between Beaumont and Longview.