Pine Bluff Arkansas River Railway
One new railroad which had been operating independently, but the capital stock of which was owned by the Cotton Belt, was acquired by lease on January 1, 1918. It was the Pine Bluff Arkansas River Railway, incorporated January 26, 1898, that operated a line from Reydel to Rob Roy, Arkansas, where it connected with the Cotton Belt. There were several predecessor companies that existed prior to the organization of the Pine Bluff Arkansas River Railway.
The first of these was the Pine Bluff and Swan Lake Railway Company, incorporated on June 11, 1884, under the direction of Charles M. Neel, who decided to connect the several large plantations along the Arkansas River with the city of Pine Bluff. The line was completed from Rob Roy to Swan Lake, Arkansas, in the fall of 1884, and operated trains into Pine Bluff over Cotton Belt tracks from Rob Roy.
The original company was reorganized, first into the Little Rock, Pine Bluff and White River Railway Company, in November, 1884,and then into the Pine Bluff, Monroe an New Orleans Railway Company in June, 1886. F. M. Gillett was deeded the property, and in turn he conveyed the title to the Pine Bluff and Eastern Railway Company in 1892.
Samuel Fordyce was appointed receiver for this road in September, 1895 and served in that capacity until 1897, when the property was sold to J. H. Taylor, and the following year he conveyed the title to the Pine Bluff Arkansas River Railway, a Cotton Belt subsidiary.
This last company standard-gauged the line and extended it to Waldstein, Arkansas, in 1912. The entire property was leased to the Cotton Belt in January, 1918, under a contract for payment by the lessee of operating expenses, taxes, and interest on bonds. Despite the patronage given to the "Peavine," as it was called locally, it lost an average of $17,000 annually from 1930 until it was abandoned in December, 1934.
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