The Burlington Routes
1887 - Present
Incorporated as the Cheyenne & Burlington Railroad in March 1887, the 30-mile long Wyoming segment was a part of the larger 145-mile long Chicago, Burlington & Quincy (CB&Q) Railroad line that ran from Midland, Nebraska, westward to Sterling, Colorado, and then northwestward into Cheyenne, Wyoming. Completed and opened for traffic to Cheyenne on December 11, 1887. the Wyoming portion, now vacated, ran from the Colorado-Wyoming State border in the vicinity of Carpenter, Wyoming into downtown Cheyenne with stations established in Carpenter, Arcola, Camp Stool, and Altvan. This line constructed of "light rail" was designed to haul agricultural products, some passengers, and industrial products needed in the growing west.
The Cheyenne & Burlington operated independently until February 1908 when it was purchased by the much larger CB&Q and passenger and mail service was suspended until the 1950s. The chief value of the line was hauling wheat which was the primary crop in the area. By 1970 the Wyoming segment was closed and much of the rail had been removed and salvaged. Today the route generally consists of an earthen railroad grade with cuts and fills to accommodate development of the land. Much of the 200 foot wide right-of-way is still listed as belonging to the current Burlington Northern & Santa Fe (BNSF) Railroad.
Razed in 1927, the first terminal was replaced with a second smaller modern Spanish-style depot in 1929. This second depot lasted until 1955 when it too was torn down in favor of a parking lot. The Burlington would provide dedicated passenger ("Vestibule Trains") service between Denver, Cheyenne, Omaha, and Chicago from its beginning until 1893 (this was a service that was not possible on the Union Pacific at that time).
After the Panic of 1893 all lines had difficulties and Burlington changed their passenger service to "Accommodation Mixed Trains." Freight being the chief money maker for the Cheyenne to Sterling segment as the main passenger service was handled out of Denver direct. In 1908 the CB&Q would also buy out the Colorado & Southern (C&S) Line which provided service north through Cheyenne from Denver and Fort Collins, Colorado, and south from Casper and Douglas, Wyoming.
Burlington is now referred to as the BNSF Railroad as they continue to grow and expand their services. Their last Depot was built in the vicinity of West 27th Street and Cribbon Avenue. This was also the location of their roundhouse and main rail yard in Cheyenne. this depot building still exists but is used solely as an operations building even though a more modern operations building has been constructed on this same site. The Burlington track continues to run north and south through Denver into Texas and north to the Wyoming coal fields and connections into central Wyoming and on into the northwest through Montana.
Location. 41° 7.944′ N, 104° 48.827′ W. Marker is in Cheyenne, Wyoming, in Laramie County. Marker is on Capitol Avenue just south of Lincolnway, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Cheyenne WY 82001, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Union Pacific Depot (within shouting distance of this marker); The first steam-powered locomotive reached Cheyenne on November 14, 1867 (about 300 feet
Categories. • Railroads & Streetcars •
Credits. This page was last revised on October 9, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 15, 2011, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 912 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on October 9, 2016, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 3, 4. submitted on September 15, 2011, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. 5, 6, 7. submitted on October 9, 2016, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.