Moffat Tunnel A Brief History by Charles Albi and Kenton Forrest SC 1984

Moffat Tunnel A Brief History by Charles Albi and Kenton Forrest SC 1984

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Moffat Tunnel A Brief History by Charles Albi and Kenton Forrest SC 1984
 
Moffat Tunnel A Brief History by Charles Albi and Kenton Forrest SC 1984
Soft Cover
Copyright 1984
By Charles Albi & Kenton Forrest
44 Pages
In the fall of 1866 the Union Pacific Railroad had reached the point in the construction of its transconline where a final decision had to be made in the selection of a route across the Continental Divide. Hoping to run its line through Denver, the Union Pacific's Chief Engineer, General Grenville M. Dodge, had three Rocky Mountain passes under serious consid: Berthoud, at the head of Clear Creek; Boulder, or Rollins, as it was then coming to be known, above South Boulder Creek and Cache la Poudre, far to the north. The General himself barely escaped being trappby a sudden blizzard while exploring the high reachof Rollins Pass that November. This experience convinced him that any route through the high Rockies west of Denver would be impractical to build and operate, and the Union Pacific was diverted to the easier grades of southern Wyoming. For the next seven decades, Denver and Colorado were relegated to the backwaters of transcontinental commerce.
There was, however, one man whose destiny became a lifelong project to remedy this situation. David Halliday Moffat, Jr. had been born in the Hudson Valley of New York State in 1839. His career began as a bank teller in New York City, but he soon moved west, first to Des Moines, Iowa and shortly to Omaha, where he had become a "paper" millionaire dealing in real estate by his twenty-first birthday. Within a few months he continued his westward migration, opening a bookstore in Denver in the spring of 1860. When the Union Pacific made its decision to bypass the city, Dave Moffat was cashier of the First National Bank and one of the community's established leaders. Although he was to build his fortune in banking and mining, Moffat was destined to be remembered in history through his involvement with most of the important railroads built in Colorado. He served as treasurer of the Denver Pacific Railroad & Telegraph Company, the first line to reach the city from the Union Pacific at Cheyenne, Wyoming in 1870. With Governor John Evans he incorporated the narrow gauge Denver, South Park & Pacific and soon became receiver of W.A.H. Loveland's Colorado Central, the first company to lay rails into the mountains west of Denver.


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