The Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific was a major railroad which first operated on 10 October 1852, a year after construction began in October 1851. It was formally known as the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific from 1866, by which time three main routes, and 633 miles (1,019 km) of track, crossed Texas, its home state. Its other main routes, known as the Golden State Route and Choctaw Route, ran across the mid-continent, extending northwards to South Dakota and Minnesota, westwards to Colorado and New Mexico, and eastwards through Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska to Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas and Louisiana. It did not extend to Houston and Galveston until 1964 when it merged with the Burlington-Rock Island Railroad (of which it had a 50 per cent share from 1906). The railway struggled financially and entered receivership in 1975 and ceased operations in 1980s when several different railroads purchased its stock.
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