What line am I seeing?

Discussion in 'General' started by Iantha_Branch, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. Iantha_Branch

    Iantha_Branch Member

    I think this is the correct place to put this question.
    Long story short I happened to notice a line thursday looking at a map (barton county soil map in ag class) I think I had seen it before but paid it no mind.

    I wonder what is this branch/sub? I traced it on google earth to start by spliting off the ash grove sub at Arcadia, going south crossing the Mop main that runs from Neveda to Pittsburg, then curving south of Mindenmines and going into pittsburg then going on to Cherokee an joining the Afton Sub. Was this built buy the Frisco, or by the KCFS&M (or ancestor of that line)?

  2. gstout

    gstout Member Frisco.org Supporter

    According to the SPV Atlas (Prairies East and Ozarks, p. 49) this is a Frisco branch.

  3. FriscoFriend (Bob Hoover RIP 4/12/2018)

    FriscoFriend (Bob Hoover RIP 4/12/2018) Passed Away April 12, 2018 Frisco.org Supporter


    Did you mean Bourbon County? Barton County is in central Kansas and includes Great Bend.
  4. bob_wintle

    bob_wintle Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Bob, I believe he is talking about a Barton county Missouri map.
  5. mark

    mark Member


    This line is the Frisco's Parsons Subdivision.

    At one time it ran from Acardia KS to Cherryville, KS. Stations in order from the north were Arcadia, Clemens No. 22, Mertz, Mulberry, K.C.S. Crossing (state line), M.P. Crossing, Minden Mines (MO), Midway (KS), Litchfield, Pittsburg, K.C.S. Crossing, Atlas, Maxine, M.P. Crossing, Empire, Opolis, M.P. Crossing, Afton Sub (S.L.S.F.), Cherokee, Monmouth, McCune, Strauss, Lakeview, Brownstone, Parsons, M.K.T. Crossing, Dennis, Mortimer, Carthage Sub (S.L.S.F.), Cherryvale.

    At the station Kramer and later Weir City Jct. there was a mine spur that departed southwest and south for Sinclair and Wier City West Weir. After the abandonment of the Tuckahoe Subdivision the Frisco use trackage rights over the K.C.S. from Pittsburg southeast to Empire to a 3 mile industry spur, through Maxine (on the former Tuckahoe Branch) to an Empire District Power Plant in Missouri. Just east of Parsons, at the station Brownstone there was a 6 mile industry spur that departed south for the Kansas Ordanance Plant (more formerly the Kansas Army Ammunition Plant).

    Hope this helps.


  6. Rancho Bob

    Rancho Bob Member

    Is this the line...it sort of curves through the SW quadrant of Mulberry then crosses the KCS at a shallow angle?

  7. mark

    mark Member


    Yes, this line approaches from the north, passes through Mulberry toward the southeast, crosses the K.C.S into Missouri to Minden Mines, then turns southwest to cross back into Kansas to Pittsburg.

    The Parsons Subdivision was largely a coal branch that also served an important ammunition plant in its day.

    Hope this helps.


  8. Iantha_Branch

    Iantha_Branch Member

    Thanks Mark. This answered my question. But one other thing, when was it tore out? Did the Frisco do it or BN or sections at a time?

  9. mvtelegrapher

    mvtelegrapher Member


    The old Frisco timetable I gave you should have the Parsons Sub in it. Also, I've got lots of information on the line, let me know what your looking for and I can get it together for the next time your over. I did a construction history of this branch for a college paper and it was also an article in the Meteor. Dave Parker, one of our Heartlands members worked this line and can tell you lots of stories about it.

  10. Iantha_Branch

    Iantha_Branch Member

    John, It'll be December before I can make a heartlands meeting. Basically my question now is when was it built and when was it put out of service.

  11. Karl

    Karl 2008 Engineer of the Year Frisco.org Supporter

    Ft Scott and Carthage Railroad: Arcadia to Alston, 1881
    Kansas & Missouri Railroad: Alston – Pittsburg - Kramer, 1882
    Memphis, Kansas City, and Colorado Railway: Kramer – Cherokee - Parsons, 1878
    Parsons – Cherryvale, 1881
    Dennis to Cherryvale abandoned during 1960 by SL-SF
    Parsons to Dennis abandoned during 1976 by SL-SF
    Arcadia to Mindenmines abandoned during 1987 by BN
    Cherokee to West Parsons abandoned during 1990 by BN
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 23, 2012
  12. mvtelegrapher

    mvtelegrapher Member

    Most of these records are correct except it was the Memphis, Kansas & Colorado which was a narrow gauge line, no City in the name. It actually built from Cherokee to Parsons first then extended from Cherokee east to Weir City then on to Messer, Kansas. It was then purchased by the KCFS&G in 1880 who actually extended the line west from Parsons to Cherryvale using the MK&C name then the line was standard gauged in one day. The line from Messer to Weir had been abandoned by the Gulf road in 1880 after they acquired the line. It is one of the first rail abandonments in Kansas. The junction where the original MK&C line to Weir and the later extension on into Pittsburg is actually Weir Junction and not Kramer. Kramer is several miles east of this point and was the location of the old Frisco line known as the Pittsburg and Columbus which went to Weir crossing the Gulf line from Cherokee to Pittsburg. Southeast Kansas is a spaghetti bowl of rail lines built by many railroads under several subsidiaries and the exact locations, names and construction/abandonment records can be very confusing and not always up to date.

    John Chambers

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