Texas and the
the streamliner era the
Sun Belt was not the economic
powerhouse we think of today. To be honest, it was a bit of a
backwater. Even so, the region supported a respectable amount of
railroad activity and was home to a number of memorable long distance
Southern Pacific's heavyweight secondary
service on the Sunset Route between New Orleans and Los Angeles via
Houston, San Antonio, El Paso, and Tucson.
- April, 1955
The Arizona Limited
all-private-room train in the west, this train aimed at
vacationers traffic would operate between Chicago and Phoenix over the
Golden State Route for only two seasons.
- December, 1940
The California Special
This Santa Fe train fed
passengers from New Orleans (via Missouri Pacific), Houston, and
Dallas/Fort Worth to the company's transcontinental trains on the Belen
Cutoff route at Clovis, New Mexico. Operated via Brownwood, Sweetwater,
Special - July, 1954
The Golden State
The Sunbelt's transcontinental
operated by the Rock Island and Southern Pacific between Chicago and
Los Angeles via Tucumcari, El Paso, and Phoenix.
State - December, 1948
- March, 1968
The Houstonian/The Orleanean
Missouri Pacific operated this pair of trains between New Orleans and
Houston, via Baton Rouge and Beaumont.
Orleanean - May, 1957
service on the Golden State Route between Chicago and Los Angeles which
also served San Diego via the San Diego & Arizona Eastern
Imperial - August, 1950
Sam Houston Zephyr
The Burlington's entry in the express
passenger market between Fort Worth, Dallas, and Houston. Paired with
Rock Island's Texas Rocket up until the 1945
debut of the Twin Star Rocket.
Zephyr/Texas Rocket - December, 1941
Zephyr - August, 1950
The Sunbeam / The
Southern Pacific's streamliner
between Dallas and Houston.
- August, 1950
The quintessential Sun Belt train,
the Southern Pacific's Sunset Limited traversed the
entire breadth of Texas—all 927 miles of it—on its way from New
Orleans to Los Angeles via Houston, San Antonio, El Paso, and Phoenix.
Limited - August, 1950
Sunset Limited -
- September, 1960
- December, 1964
- June, 1968
- April, 1971
Santa Fe Railway's premier entry in the Texas market, this train
connected Chicago to Houston/Galveston by way of Kansas City, Topeka,
Oklahoma City and Fort Worth.
Texas Chief -
- March, 1967
Texas Chief - April
was not just a train—it was a franchise. Under the umbrella of this
name, the Missouri Pacific operated a veritable spiderweb of trains
linking St. Louis and Memphis with Houston, San Antonio, Dallas/Fort
Worth, and El Paso.
- December, 1948
Eagle - December, 1952
Texas Eagle - June
streamliner, jointly operated by the Frisco and the Katy through 1959,
Louis with San Antonio, Dallas and Fort Worth with connecting service
to Wichita Falls. (After 1959, service was all-Katy originating in
- December, 1948
Texas Special/The Bluebonnet - May, 1957
The Texas Zephyr
Streamliner service between Dallas/Fort Worth and Denver, operated by
the Burlington's Colorado and Texas affiliates.
Stretching over 1300 miles from
Minneapolis to Houston via Kansas City and Dallas/Fort Worth, this was
longest passenger run under its own management.
Rocket - August 1945
Twin Star Rocket -
The Waco, Beaumont, Trinity & Sabine Railway
comments, original material and page design copyright ©2006-2012 by Eric H.
. Page modified 2/19/2012.