1882: A momentous year

Our railroad was founded in 1882. As we enter fall and winter, here’s a look at what else happened that year from October through December:

  • Oct. 16 – The New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad (“Nickel Plate Road”) runs its first trains over the entire system between Buffalo, New York, and Chicago. Nine days later, the Seney Syndicate sells the road to William Henry Vanderbilt for $7.2 million. His father, Cornelius, founded Vanderbilt University in 1873, which is former Bears quarterback Jay Cutler’s alma mater. 
  • Nov. 14 – Franklin Leslie shoots Billy “The Kid” Claiborne dead in the streets of Tombstone, Ariz. The Chicago Cubs spring home has long been Mesa, Ariz., which is 184 miles northwest of where “The Kid” was shot. 
  • Dec. 22 – The first string of Christmas lights was created by Thomas Edison. Safety Fact: According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Christmas lights cause 40% of Christmas tree fires.