Factors in the Growth of
and Ohio System
factors have had an effect upon the growth of the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio
system from 1920 to the present time.
The evidence which is available, however, indicates that the
quality and continuity of executive direction has been the most
important influence on the Company’s development over the past thirty
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
the Board of the old Gulf, Mobile and Northern had several changes in
membership in the years from 1917 to 1940, these changes in personnel
caused no appreciable change in Company policy or tactics. Since the creation of the GM&O in 1940, changes in
Board membership have been more frequent but Company policy, has been
just as constant as it was before the creation of the new Company.
the GM&N was really organized as a company, the men who later were
to form its Board of Directors decided that the primary long run
objective of the new Company, would be to develop a new through rail
route from the Gulf to the Midwest.
Not once in the GM&N’s existence was the policy of
expansion effectively challenged, even though the program allowed few
dividends and in some instances caused hardships for the Directors of
the road. The policy of
expansion was so strong that not even the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy
representatives, who either directly or indirectly, controlled at least
40 per cent of the Company’s stock, tried for long
to prevent the merging of the GM&N and the Mobile and Ohio which
resulted in a change of traffic away, from the Burlington.
This action brought losses to the Burlington, but it allowed the
GM&N to expand into a major sectional road.
Company’s financial policy was specifically designed to assist the
growth program of the road. The
greatest single action in keeping with this policy was elimination of
the bonded debt of the New Orleans, Mobile and Chicago, prior to 1917.
The Board assumed that by this
step the new GM&N would be assured of a credit potential with which
it might build a bigger and better railroad.
The fact that the bonds of the former company were of doubtful
value does not detract from the decision to forgo interest in the hope
of someday receiving greater returns in dividends and stock
evidence of this financial policy, is the fact that in later years
dividends were never paid unless the road had sufficient funds on hand
or in sight to care for planned improvements or expansion.
The stockholders who previously had been bondholders wanted to
receive earnings on their investments, but this desire was subordinated
to a long-run plan of development which could be carried out only
through improvement of the road. Before
the former bondholders of 1915
received a penny in dividends on their new stock, the GM&N had
issued $4,000,000 in bonds, which placed the former bondholders in a
junior position insofar as liquidation of holdings was concerned. Not many railroads have ever had such a strong desire for
expansion that their owners took as much risk as those in control of the
GM&N in the years from 1915 to 1922.
Board of Directors of the GM&N established the corporate and
financial policies of the Company.
The Board also selected their fellow, I. B. Tigrett, to be the
executive to carry out this program.
During the early years of the 1920’s
Executive Committee of the Board was in very close touch with the
administrative activities of the Company.
In a very large measure, however, the day-to-day operating
policies were chosen by Mr. Tigrett and his full-time associates on the
operating management of the GM&N-GM&O has had an even more
remarkable record for length of service than the members of the Board of
Directors. Mr. Tigrett
began his administration of the Company in March, 1920, as President, and as Chairman of the Corporation is
still in full control as the chief executive officer of the road.
Mr. Hicks, who succeeded to the presidency of the GM&O in
November 1952, was chosen by Mr. Tigrett to be
Comptroller in 1919 and has been Mr. Tigrett’s confidant and principal
assistant ever since. No
Class I railroad in the United States has had a longer record of
continuity in top management than the GM&O system.
various department heads of the GM&O have served the Company almost
as long as Mr. Tigrett and Mr. Hicks.
Two of the present vice-presidents, H. E. Warren, in charge of
the Purchases and Stores Department, and S.
A. Dobbs, Chicago
Executive Representative, were working for the Company prior to 1920. R. E. DeNeefe, the Comptroller, and Mr. Brock, Executive
Vice-President and General Manager, joined the Company in 1922.
A. Tibor, Vice-President in charge of Traffic, joined the company in 1926.
T. T. Martin, Vice-President in charge
of Industrial Development, quit teaching school in 1927
joined the employees of the Company.
R. E. Stevenson, Vice-President and Executive Representative in
St. Louis, went to work as secretary to the general passenger agent in 1928.
Brown of New York had been Secretary of the Company as well as assistant
treasurer for several years before 1920. He joined the Board of Directors in the early 1920’s
was made a vicepresident to represent the company in the financial
circles of the east. He
resigned from both positions in 1943 after the company had carried out its merger program with
the Mobile and Ohio.
Flowers, Vice-President and General Counsel at the time of his
retirement in 1947,
an attorney for the road in 1920. His
Special assignment was legal representation in the important state of
Mississippi, and his home was in Jackson, its capital.
The legal battle to merge the GM&N and the M&O was his
responsibility, and much of the success of the program must be placed to
of the assistant vice-presidents and other key employees have been in
the service of the Company for twenty or thirty years.
men, truly, have “grown up” with the road, so that at the present
time they know without asking what Company policy is and what needs
to be done to effectuate it. Thus,
only a minimum of direction is needed to conduct the day-to-day business
of the Company.
campaign which the GM&N began in 1920 to develop better relations
with the public it served had the full support of the Board of
Directors, but the program was directed by the President and his
assistants. The Board
allowed Mr. Tigrett to pursue his own suggestions to gain public support
for the Company and its growth campaign.
The program of public speeches and newspaper advertisements which
served the road so well was developed in Jackson, Tennessee, and Mobile.
The Company adopted the policy of never making a major move of
any type without fully informing the public as to the causes and
objectives of these moves. Sometimes
the information was not to the public’s liking, but at least the
people along the line felt that they knew what was happening to
addition to informing the public of all moves, the Company has followed
the policy of trying to serve the transportation needs of the territory
insofar as the Company has been able to do so.
The GM&N has never given the impression that it intended to
serve without profit to itself, but the road has been willing to
consider new methods to serve some of its sparsely populated territory. Passenger service has never been a money-making activity on
the southern lines of the GM&O but the Company- has never abandoned
all passenger service in an area unless a substitute method of travel
was available for the people who lived along the road.
modern day, GM&O expects to continue to broaden its public relations
efforts in the days ahead. When
Mr. Tigrett’s title was changed to Chairman of the Corporation in
November, 1952, a new position of Assistant Vice-President, Public
Relations was created. Mr.
Berney M. Sheridan, who has been with the Company for many years, was
elevated to this position.
relations policies, too, have been established by the executives on the
road rather than by the Board. On
a small road like the GM&N in 1920, it was quite easy to be
available to employees to discuss their problems.
In the early years especially, management held informal group
discussions with employees at various points along the line to explain
Company policies and objectives. As
the Company has grown, management has tried to continue these
discussions, even though the problem of size has caused difficulties in
GM&N-GM&O management has tried to serve its employee groups
whenever the needs of the Company would allow it.
The Company set up group insurance as soon as it could
financially arrange to do so and has consistently worked to improve the
health and safety program. The
efforts to improve living conditions of employees by guidance and
assistance have been of great value in maintaining good labor relations.
spite of its desire to maintain good labor relations, the management of
the GM&O system has never hesitated to disagree with the labor
viewpoint if Company policy seemed to call for such action.
The Company has chosen to be frank and outspoken when it does
differ with brotherhood representatives.
As a result, although labor groups on the road may not always get
what they want, almost none of the employees feel that they will be
betrayed by the top executives of the Company.
reason that the management team of the GM&O has had such favorable
labor relations is that, in general, the department heads of the road
have worked as hard as, or harder than, the ordinary employees. Especially in the decade of the 1920’s and the depression
years, the executives of the GM&N worked long hours, they were
personally frugal, and they paid close attention to railroad affairs. One factor in this situation is that Mr. Tigrett’s salary
has always been low in relation to his duties and responsibilities.
Another has been Mr. Tigrett’s insistence that he was a
railroad manager hired to operate the Company for the benefit of his
stockholders and the citizens of the territory traversed by the road.
In no instance has the President’s office or position been used
to enable him to profit from movements of his Company’s stock in the
exchanges of the country. He
is not now, nor has he ever been, a dominant stockholder in the
operations policy of the GM&N-GM&O has been to render full
transportation service to the territory occupied by the road.
The Company began with rail service, but it started to use
highway facilities about as soon as the roads of rural Mississippi made
such activity possible.
During World War II the Company made plans to begin air
transportation for the region it served, but these plans did not
primary objective of the Operating Department of the Company has been to
reduce operating expenses on current operations whenever possible.
The abandonment of unprofitable branch lines and discontinuance
of uneconomical passenger service has peen encouraged.
The Operating Department has been quick to suggest ways to offer
substitute service, however, so that the areas affected would not be
isolated. Much of the
success of the GM&O can be traced to the very active and constant
work by this department to cut expenses while rendering approximately
the same level of service. Executive
Vice-President and General Manager Glenn Brock has a motto which
typifies the operating policy of the road.
He believes that “some item of the expense budget must be
reduced today so the road can be ready to withstand the increases which
are bound to occur tomorrow.”
keeping with the policy of reducing expenses whenever possible, the
GM&O has never tried to develop a “fancy” roadbed.
No one is likely to hear that the GM&O owns the “finest
roadbed in the United States.” The Company does try, however, to apply
the best quality materials which will allow the greatest ease in
maintenance and give the longest life consistent with proper use.
The roadway and equipment of the GM&O are considered as tools
designed for a special task. These
tools are to be given the best care possible to lengthen their useful
life, but the primary aim of the GM&O is not to possess the finest
tool chest in the country at the expense of a full purse.
For the same reason, much of the roadbed of the GM&O is still
“rolling.” The expense
of removing the humps is so great that elimination is not justified by
present use, especially since Diesel power makes them less troublesome
from an operating standpoint.
traffic policy of the GM&O has been as tightly controlled as has its
operating policy. The basic
objective has been to add profitable tonnage to the line in every
acceptable manner. In the
early days of the 1920’s
road had little to sell but employee loyalty.
This the road began to do in a series of campaigns designed to
get more business. Because
the employees were so interested in the growth of “their” railroad,
the campaigns were very effective in “pulling the road up by its own
boot straps.” At the same time, the Company began to seek interchange
agreements with other roads by “trading” tonnage when it left the
territory of the GM&N. The
effort was successful because of the loyalty of most of the shippers
along the lines of the GM&N.
the Company was seeking all the profitable traffic available to its
existing lines, it also was busy mapping plans to extend its lines by
construction, rental agreements, or merger.
The primary purpose of any extension of the GM&N was to
increase the volume of traffic over the existing lines of the Company or
to get a longer haul on available traffic.
All additions to traffic volume had as their purpose the
enlarging of net revenues of the operations of the Company.
No one was allowed to forget for a minute that an improved net
income was the objective of the road.
The GM&N itself was created as a result of the collapse of
the New Orleans, Mobile and Chicago after an unwise traffic agreement
and rental contract had weakened the company.
The management of the GM&N did not intend that that should
happen to the new Company, and all major policy was designed to provide
funds to protect the growth of the line.
though a capable group of executives may be in control, the success or
failure of any railroad is greatly influenced by the loyalty and
effectiveness of the total employee group.
The GM&N family in the early 1920’s developed a magnificent spirit of
co-operation, and it devoted its best efforts to learning how to operate
a railroad effectively. Certainly
the early success of the GM&N would not have been so great if the
employees had not given of their best to make the road grow.
the number of employees of necessity grew considerably larger after the
founding of the GM&O, much of the spirit of co-operation and
interest in the affairs of the Company remains in the employees of 1953.
The GM&N-GM&O has been
blessed with a splendid group of workers which makes all the Company’s
problems seem lighter to those in charge of the affairs of the road.
INFLUENCE OF OTHER RAILROADS
The Illinois Central
of the vital factors in the growth of the GM&N-GM&O has been the
influence of other railroads. By
far the most important of these lines is the IC.
Prior to 1926 the IC acted as a friendly big brother
to the little GM&N and at one time there was much talk of the
impending purchase of the GM&N by its big neighbor.
This development never took place, but during these early years
the IC was the GM&N’s best friend.
The IC gave better joint rate divisions, it exchanged tonnage at
Jackson, Tennessee, and it gave helpful advice to the operators of the
GM&N After Mr. Odell came to the GM&N from the Operating
Department of the IC and brought several operating men with him, the
operations departments of the two companies were very close.
in 1926, the GM&N announced its plan to enter into the preferential
traffic agreement with both the New Orleans Great Northern and the
Burlington, conditions between the two companies immediately changed.
The IC endeavored to pull business away from the GM&N and to
reduce the volume of New Orleans traffic which the new route might
obtain. The IC, however,
did not attempt to block consummation of the plan by opposing it before
the Interstate Commerce Commission.
the bitter days of the depression, the GM&N needed a new trackage
agreement to reach Paducah from Jackson, Tennessee, and the IC rather
surprisingly agreed to let the GM&N use its tracks.
The primary reason for this development was the desperate need of
all railroads for any increase in revenues, and the trackage agreement
provided for substantial payments to the IC.
trackage agreement was cancelled by the IC in 1936 under pressure from
its railway brotherhoods. The
cancellation threw the two companies into a bitter legal battle which
lasted up to the time of the GM&N-GM&O merger in 1940.
The IC fought to prevent the merger, but the Interstate Commerce
Commission refused to give much weight to the arguments put forth by the
larger road. Once the IC
saw that it was defeated on this proposition, it made peace with the new
GM&O and since 1941 the two companies Dave adopted a
live-and-let-live policy. Competition is very keen, but both managements have been
careful to avoid acrimonious situations.
The IC offered no opposition to the merger of the GM&O with
the Alton Railroad and only appeared at the hearings to request that all
existing gateways be kept open. This
the GM&O agreed to by stipulation before the hearings really
GM&O interchanges more business with the IC than with any other
road. The two lines are so
close in much of their territory that these and other contacts are
unavoidable. For instance,
the two companies use the Cairo bridge of the IC in common.
The GM&O pays 40 per cent of the interest charges and expenses for
maintenance of the span. The
IC has a similar arrangement by which it uses the tracks of the GM&O
from Jackson, Tennessee, to Corinth, Mississippi.
Until March 1952, the GM&O used the line of the IC from
Corinth to Haleyville, Alabama. Both
companies are eager to compete for traffic, but they also want to avoid
friction wherever possible because of mutual self-interest.
the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio has been attempting to cancel its Birmingham
trackage agreement, the legal departments of the two roads have been
battling each other but up to the present no other friction has appeared
as a result of the case. In
all probability the situation will be settled without another public
fight similar to the one which took place prior to the Gulf, Mobile and
Northern Mobile and Ohio merger.
for the IC, the Burlington has had more influence on the development of
the GM&O than any other railroad.
The close preferential traffic agreement of 1926 was the
beginning of contact between the two roads.
After that date the Burlington began to buy small amounts of
stock in the GM&N with the intention of acquiring control.
At one time during the depression, the Board of Directors of the
GM&N discussed a proposal by the Burlington to complete acquisition,
but this was never accomplished. The
Burlington ceased purchasing when its stock ownership of the GM&N
reached about 30 per cent of the total stock outstanding.
the GM&N began to consider merging with the M&O, the Burlington
expressed definite opposition to the idea, because it would stop the
traffic flow at the Paducah interchange point.
Fortunately for the future GM&O the Burlington eventually
decided not to block the proposal.
The merger went through, and the GM&O profited, while at the
same time the Burlington and the IC suffered losses in tonnage and
revenue. Creation of the
GM&O caused the Burlington stock interest to drop to about 12 per
cent, and the Alton merger reduced this to about 9 per cent.
During the years from 1930
to 1940 the Burlington had a strong representation on the Board of the GM&N
but since the formation of the GM&O no Burlington representatives
have been Directors of the Company.
Relations have been friendly and co-operative, but there has been
little direct interchange of traffic between the two lines.
the GM&O acquired the Alton, the Burlington expressed an interest in
using the Kansas City, line, first in conjunction with the Atchison,
Topeka and Santa Fe and later by itself.
At the present time the Burlington is using the Kansas
City-Francis section of the GM&O line for freight service into St.
Louis. This is by
trackage agreement under which the Burlington pays a large share of
maintenance and other expenses on the line.
GM&O did not desire an east-west line because its major traffic flow
is north-south. If the
Burlington had not evidenced its interest in the Kansas City line, the
GM&O might never have considered purchase of the Alton properties.
INFLUENCE OF GOVERNMENT AGENCIES
The Interstate Commerce Commission
Interstate Commerce Commission must be listed as a major factor in the
growth of the GM&O during the period from 1920 to the present. In
the years prior to 1925 the Commission rendered several decisions which
helped the struggling GM&N to stay alive.
Some of these were rate cases in which the Commission tried to
give the GM&N a better division or special treatment as a weak
railroad. Also, the
Commission acted favorably on the GM&N’s request for government
financial aid just after March 1, 1920.
early decision of the Commission helped the future growth of the
GM&N. The Commission
supported the request to build the Jackson and Eastern from Union to
Jackson. This permission, granted in 1921, was what allowed the
GM&N to build into Jackson, Mississippi in 1926-27.
Commission in 1926 gave its permission to the GM&N the New Orleans
Great Northern and the Burlington to develop their three-line route from
Chicago to New Orleans. The
Commission supported the arrangement for the express purpose of opening
up competition for the New Orleans traffic which moved east of the
biggest boost which the Commission gave to the GM&N was in its plan
to merge with the M&O. In
this instance the Commission allowed parallel and competing lines to
merge which it has often refused to sanction in other situations. Apparently the Commission was so eager to develop another
Mississippi Valley carrier that it subordinated its scruples about
merging parallel lines.
the case had a much different basis the Commission also supported the
GM&O in the acquisition of the Alton on the same general idea of
creating a new through trunk line from Chicago to the Gulf.
public service commissions of several states often proved willing to
help the GM&N-GM&O to continue its growth.
In the formative years of the road, the Mississippi Public
Service Commission was generally favorable to the moves of the Company.
The Mississippi and the Alabama commissions both supported the
GM&N--GM&O merger case before the Interstate Commerce
Commission. None of the
regulatory agencies has supported every application of the
GM&N--GM&O but in general the commissions have been quite
receptive to the suggestions of the Company.
The Reconstruction Finance Corporation
government agency which came to the assistance of the GM&N-GM&O
at a critical time was the Reconstruction Finance Corporation.
RFC money was used to finance the GM&N-GM&O merger in
1940. Before the
transaction was concluded, the head of the Reconstruction Finance
Corporation, Jesse Jones, became an active supporter of the plan.
He called on President Roosevelt in an effort to delay the
signing of the Transportation Act of 1940 so the merger could be
completed. The merger was
completed on September 13, 1940, and the Transportation Act became law
five days later, on September 18.
AVAILABILITY OF COMPLEMENTARY LINES
The Jackson and Eastern
availability of the complementary lines which were merged into the
GM&O must be classed as one of the major factors in the growth of
the road. The little
Jackson and Eastern with its franchise to build into Jackson was vital
to the GM&N in 1926. It
is extremely unlikely that the GM&N could have secured such a
franchise in 1926. There
was no real reason to prevent the purchase of the Jackson and Eastern,
however, so the GM&N secured its entry into Jackson, Mississippi, in
The New Orleans Great Northern
New Orleans Great Northern was also vital to the growth plans in 1926.
The New Orleans Great Northern had been built by wealthy
lumbering interests to serve their sawmill operations.
Original plans had called for it to be built on toward the north
from Jackson, Mississippi, but a shortage of capital caused it to stop
at that point. The road
served a valuable local territory but had little hope for development
because the IC, which controlled all lines moving to the north out of
Jackson, also had two lines going south to New Orleans.
Another circumstance made acquisition by the Gulf, Mobile and
Northern rather easy. The
New Orleans Great Northern in 1929 was still controlled by its lumber
company sponsors, who were not interested in operating a railroad as
long as they received good service from the line and were paid
reasonable dividends from its operation.
The Mobile and Ohio
Mobile and Ohio was available to merge with the GM&N almost by chance.
When the Southern Railway bought control of the M&O in 1901,
the plan was to merge the M&O into the Southern. Governor James K. Vardaman of Mississippi intervened,
however, vetoing a bill in 1902 (which had passed both houses of the
Mississippi legislature) to allow the M&O to be merged into the
Southern. Vardaman, who
hated and feared most corporations, had a special animus against the
Southern. His veto in 1902
undoubtedly influnced the fate of the GM&N in 1940.
the Southern could not merge with the M&O, it proceeded to treat it
somewhat like a stepchild and finally in 1932 allowed the M&O to go
into receivership. Still
later, the Southern needed cash so badly that it was willing, under RFC
demands, to sell its M&O bonds.
The cash from this sale was used to pay some of the obligations
which the Southern owed to the Reconstruction Finance Corporation; so
Jesse Jones was helping the GM&O and at the same time collecting a
debt when he helped complete the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio merger.
The Alton Railroad
availability of the Alton in 1947 was almost as fortuitous as the case
of the M&O. E. H.
Harriman and associates bought the Alton in 1899 at a fabulous price,
because the road had been, a well operated and highly, prosperous
company for thirty-five years. For
a variety of reasons, however, the Alton was not permanently held by the
Harriman syndicate. Instead, it passed to the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific
(Rock Island) and then to several other large roads in the years from
1906 to 1930.
No strong successful management
acquired the Alton in that period, and the road drifted from one
bankruptcy to another. In
1930, friends of the Alton thought its troubles were over, because in
that year the Baltimore and Ohio acquired control of the line.
Since the B&O served Chicago and St. Louis, the acquisition
seemed to be logical enough on the surface.
Perhaps the plans and hopes of the B&O might have worked out
had it not been for the great depression, which had already started when
the B&O bought its Alton securities.
In the general debacle which followed 1930 the B&O lost
heavily as a result of trying to save its investment in the Alton.
Not only was the Alton too heavily capitalized, but the road did
not supplement the B&O as that company had hoped.
Railroads which operated between Kansas City and St. Louis no
longer wanted to exchange tonnage with the B&O at St. Louis.
Through ownership of the Alton, the B&O had ceased to be an
“eastern” line only. It
now was a “western” road, too, and had to face the competition of
the other western roads. As
a result, the B&O actually lost business by owning the Alton.
Finally in 1942 the decision was reached to let the Alton go back
into its familiar position as a ward of the courts.
all other western roads refused to have anything to do with the Alton,
Mr. Budd of the Burlington decided anything perhaps the GM&O could
use the St. Louis-Chicago line and that the Burlington might acquire the
Kansas City line from the GM&O.
As a result of these and other negotiations, the GM&O became
interested in the unwanted Alton with its proud early history, but sad
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OF THE GM&O’S TERRITORY
considering important factors which have influenced the growth of the
GM&O the general. economic
development of the territory served by the road must not be overlooked.
The fate of every railroad in the long run depends upon the
volume of traffic
by the territory traversed by the road.
When economic conditions in a territory improve, the railroad
serving that area should improve also.
South, from which the GM&N-GM&O has emerged, has had a rapid
change in its economic activity since 1900-20.
particular has advanced in many ways.
No longer is her economy tied
solely to cotton and timber, although both those items are still
important. Even in those
areas, however, progress has been made.
This is especially true of the timber industry, which was marked
for extinction some thirty or forty years ago.
New uses of timber have resulted in farming of timber rather than
cutting the land bare. Much
of the “piney woods” country, of South Mississippi is producing
annual cash crops of pulpwood and small trees for specialized lumber
uses. This type of forestry
is much better for long-range railroad operation than the older method
of rapid depletion of timber followed by economic decay.
addition to the better use of timber and farming resources, the state
has discovered salable quantities of oil and natural gas as well as some
usable mineral clay deposits. These
newly discovered resources are being used in a more intelligent manner
than was the case with the timber supply.
Severance taxes have been instituted to increase the life span of
the resources and to encourage long range planning.
famed “Balance Agriculture with Industry Program” was not started
during the 1920’s, but the state was experiencing a phase of urban
growth which had a decided effect on the state’s activities.
There are no very large cities in the state even yet, but urban
population has decidedly increased since 1920.
Small industrial plants have been started which tend to create
wage earners and also tonnage for railroads.
development in the area has been the changed attitude of state and local
governments toward industry. The
state of Mississippi has moved a long way since the legislature passed
the law which prohibited the entry into the state of any corporation
worth more than a million dollars.
At the present time, manufacturing plants are often given tax
exemption for a number of years, and in many instances buildings are
erected with public funds to house: manufacturing establishments.
Much of the industry thus obtained is light and relatively,
unstable, but as the skills of the people of the region grow, more
profitable industry should follow.
In the state of Alabama, the
biggest single improvement which affected the GM&N was the
resurgence of the port of Mobile. The
community, awakening in the city finally caused the state to spend more
than ten million dollars to create a modern ocean terminal.
This improvement has brought much more business to Mobile, which
has resulted in increased tonnage for the GM&N and the GM&O. If the economy of the lower South had declined in the
years from 1920 to 1940, the GM&N probably would have declined with
its territory. Instead,
both the region and the railroad seem to be prospering together.
Now that the GM&O has moved out of the class of regional
railroads, it should have an even better chance to develop an operating
pattern which will enable it to withstand economic storms that may lie