Rio Grande and El Paso Railroad

By: Chris Cravens

Type: General Entry

Published: June 1, 1995

The Rio Grande and El Paso Railroad Company was chartered on October 28, 1880, to run from the boundary of Texas near where the Rio Grande enters the state south to a point in El Paso County opposite Guadalupe Bravos, Chihuahua. The initial capital was $1.2 million, and the business office was in El Paso. Members of the first board of directors included T. Jefferson Coolidge of Boston, Massachusetts; William B. Strong and A. A. Hurd of Topeka, Kansas; Robert J. Brekinridge and Oscar Archer of Austin; and S. C. Slade and J. B. Tays of El Paso. The twenty miles of the Rio Grande and El Paso between the Texas-New Mexico Territory border near La Tuna (now Anthony), Texas, and El Paso was completed in 1881. The company was controlled by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Rail Road and was part of the Santa Fe route between Albuquerque, New Mexico Territory, and El Paso. In 1892 the Rio Grande and El Paso owned three locomotives, ninety-six freight cars, and ninety-six company cars. Passenger revenue that year was $17,710, freight revenue $67,295, and other revenue $17,488. Total earnings for 1895 were $76,705. On May 21, 1914, the road was renamed the Rio Grande, El Paso and Santa Fe Railroad Company.

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

Chris Cravens, “Rio Grande and El Paso Railroad,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 29, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

June 1, 1995