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Railroad: Chicago & North Western Railway Company


Various lines → C&NW (1864-xxxx) → UPRR → CN

Built: 1864 by the Peninsula Railroad Escanaba to Negaunee.

Became: 1864 became the C&NW. Peninsula Railroad was likely a construction railroad.

Built: In 1877 Menominee River Railroad from Powers to Quinnesec, then to Crystal Falls in 1882.

Built: In 1882, built Narenta to Metropolitan (1st Escanaba & Lake Superior, a construction railroad leased to C&NW same year).

Built: In 1884, Milwaukee, Lake Shore and Western Ry built from Ironwood to Watersmeet. Sold to C&NW in 1872.

Built: In 1887, the Iron River Ry (construction railroad) from Iron River to Watersmeet, sold to C&NW in 1889.

Built: In 1888, the Iron Range Ry (construction railroad) from Ishpeming to Republic, sold to C&NW in 1889.

Built: In 1891, the Paint River Ry (construction railroad) from Crystal Falls to Hemlock Mine, sold to C&NW same year.

Built: In 1891, the Escanaba, Iron Mountain and Western RR from Loop Line Junction east to North Escanaba. Leased to C&NW in 1891, merged into C&W in 1947.

Reference: [MRRC]


The Chicago & North Western Railway had a significant impact on the center and western part of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Originally built to haul iron ore from Negaunee south to Escanaba for loading on lake freighters, the C&NW built a number of branches to serve iron mines on all of the western U.P. iron ranges. The C&NW, now owned by the Canadian National, continues to serve the Ishpeming, Negaunee, Iron Mountain, Escanaba and Menominee areas of the state.