Western Maryland Railway Company


Certificate of Shares of 100$ each - States of Maryland and Pennsylvania 1955

No tax

The Western Maryland Railway was chartered as the Baltimore, Carroll and Frederick Rail Road in May, 1852. The railroad was named after three counties in eastern Maryland where it planned to operate. Within a year the railroad felt that its future lay farther west and the name was changed to Western Maryland Rail Road.

Construction of the railroad was slow and it was not until 1873 that it reached Williamsport, 90 miles west of Baltimore. Investors were more interested in the railroads being built in the west than they were in a railroad reaching an area already served by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, Chesapeake & Ohio Canal and the National Road. Consequently, most of Western Maryland's stock was purchased by the city of Baltimore.

George Gould (son of Jay Gould) bought Western Maryland in 1902. Gould's ambition was to form a transcontinental railroad in which the Western Maryland would be a link. Gould controlled several railroads across the United States but it was still necessary to extend the Western Pacific to the coast and connect the Western Maryland with the Wheeling & Lake Erie. Since the best routes were already taken by competing railroads, the construction costs of the alternate routes bankrupted Gould.

The Western Maryland was acquired by John D. Rockefeller and reorganized in 1917. In 1927, the Baltimore & Ohio purchased Rockefeller's holdings and increased its interest to 43% of Western Maryland's stock. In 1973, the Western Maryland became a subsidiary of the newly created Chessie System.

Western Maryland's tracks, which paralleled those of the B&O, were abandoned and, in 1983, the B&0 absorbed Western Maryland's remaining lines in western Pennsylvania, Maryland and West Virginia.

The stock certificate of the Western Maryland Railway shows a passenger train at a station, even though this service was discontinued during the 1950s, shortly after these certificates were issued.

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