Kearney to Stapleton

The Kearney Branch

Point of Interest

(Forwarded from the Omaha & Republican Valley Railway)

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Some telephone poles lay in the grass adjacent to the right-of-way. Photo by James Holtgrewe, April 2012.

This branch was operated by Union Pacific and abandoned in 1985.

James Holtgrewe


Thank you to Francis Gshwind for his great book on the Kearney Branch and getting me into abandoned railroads! This branch which was abandoned in segments. Arnold to Stapleton in 1976 was the first segment removed. After this first abandonement, trains had to run in reverse from Arnold to Kearney for 9 years, this was because Arnold did not have a turing wye. In 1985, the line was removed between Arnold and Riverdale. Finally in 1989, the last of the line was removed. This line is still remembered by the residents of this area with pride and joy, because it was the only way to get to Kearney before Highway 40.

James Holtgrewe
Broken Bow, NE


The segment from Arnold to Stapleton was abandoned in 1977 and dismantled in 1978. As noted, it was cut back to Riverdale in March 1985. I think the Riverdale-Kearney portion wasn't removed until 1993 and there is still a small stub in northeast Kearney. The branch had a "caboose mixed" until Amtrak and I was lucky enough to ride it three times.

Mike Bartels
Lincoln, NE


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