This abandoned railway line was officially abandoned in the 1980s. A portion of the ROW was used by BNSF to reach a power plant in the late 1990s, so this ~25-mile portion of the abandoned ROW has been "reborn".
Former business listing:
BEVIER AND SOUTHERN RAILROAD CO.---BVS P.O. Box 67, Bevier, Mo. 63532
Operates freight service from a connection with the Burlington Northern at Bevier to Binkley, MO. 9.18 miles. Rail is 90 pound. Traffic is outbound coal. Revenue class D. The original operator of the line was the Kansas & Texas Coal Railway. This line was reorganized in May 5, 1898 as the Missouri & Louisianan Railroad. On September 26, 1914 the present name was adopted. During 1915 the company operated 63 miles of track but kept abandoning section until it reached its present length in 1961. The railroad is owned by Mrs. C. F. Agee. The Slogan of the Railroad is "Have Train Will Haul"
To quote an old engineer I talked to back in the summer of 1958: "Over the years they have tried to electrify and dieselize us, but we would not stand for it! By God, we haul coal and we are going to burn coal!" The tracks and building that I saw when I was there was in a sad state of repair, but the steam engines they ran were clean, well cared for and looked great. I think passenger service quit in the 1920s. The B&S went out of business in 1982.
From a Time Table Dated December, 1929:
BEVEIR & SOUTHERN RAILROAL COMPANY.
CHAS. S. KEITH, President, Kansas City, Mo.
JNO. A. SARGENT, Vice-President and General Manager, Kansas City, Mo.
J. E. BROUGHAL, Secretary and Treasurer, Kansas City, Mo.
A. B. EWING, General Auditor and Assiaiant Treasurer,
MASSEY HOLMES, General Council, Kansas City, MO.
E. C. GERGUSON, Traffic Manager
I. W. FARMER, Chief Engineer,
J. A. BLACK, Land and Tax Commissioner,
D. DALE, Superintendent, Bevier, Mo.
JOHN D, McFADIN, Master Mechanic Bevier Mo.
GENERAL OFFICIES, KEITH & PERRY BUILDING, KANSAS CITY, MO.
December, 1929 Standard--Central Time.Connection,1. With Chicago, Burlington & Quincy R.R.
Current status of the ROW:
According to a letter from the Missouri Department of Transportation, dated Nov. 4 ,2002, the line was abandoned and rebuilt by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad. Judging a 2002 Missouri highway map, the new line might be about 25 miles long. It connects at Bevier to an existing BNSF line, originally the Quincy, Omaha & Kansas City Railroad.
Another historical summary provided by Donna Weeks Percer
Sept 26, 1914 the Bevier and Southern Railroad came into existence. The Missouri and Louisiana Railroad divided and the Louisiana portion of the railroad became the Bevier and Southern Railroad.
For many years the Bevier and Southern operated two round trips daily passenger trains. Mail and passenger train service was discontinued in 1926 after post offices at Ardmore and Koeota closed.
The usual passenger train consisted of seven miners' cars and coach number 204. Depleted mines and raw veins caused track changes. In 1943 it was necessary to construct additional tracks to serve new pits at Southern mines. Up to that point the B&S used steam power.
The Electrics were short lived. One severe grade between Ardmore and Southern mines resulted in frequent burnouts of traction motors. The Electric operations were discontinued after two years use.
The Bevier and Southern had general offices in Bevier; 43 regular employees with an annual pay roll amounting to $135,000. The Bevier and Southern railroad was very important to many people. Sometimes kids would ride the train to town so they could go to public schools. When It was time to go home, they would walk down to the train station and wait for the train home. Many people relied on the B&S not only for transportation, but also for jobs and to ship coal out that was mined in Bevier. The miners used to walk down Welsh Hill to the RR down by the Roundhouse (Which is all gone now) and they'd catch the 4 am train to the mines... Granny Bess said you could see a line of lit miner's camp all walking in a streamed light to the RR to catch the train.
Thanks to Harold J. Alldredge, Jr. for contributing information about this route.