In 1857 two charters were granted for railroad lines. They were, in Illinois, between Grayville and Mattoon and between Grayville and Mount Vernon, in Indiana. Both of these charters were met by the Peoria, Decatur & Evansville Railway, and it is from these two charters that the mainline between Browns, IL and Poseyville, IN came to pass. In 1900, ownership was transferred to Illinois Central; at a later point in time, the Owensville Terminal Company took over operation.
On April 15th, 1997, Owensville Terminal Co. applied to the Surface Transportation Board to abandon about 22.5 miles of the line from near Browns, IL to near Poseyville, IN. In Illinois it included Edwards and White Counties. In Indiana it crossed Gibson and Posey Counties. On February 3rd, 1998, STB decided that Owensville Terminal Company could remove the rails from Browns to Poseyville, but not abandon it.
On July 1st, 1999, most of the line from Browns to Poseyville was sold for scrap and thereafter some portions began use as trails. On the night of January 12/13, 2005, record flooding took out the line's first bridge span that crossed the Wabash River on the Illinois side.
Around this time, Edward M. Bailey, a retired farmer and agri-businessman, decided to build an ethanol plant near his grain elevators in Browns. However, upon investigation, he determined that there was not enough water and other services in Browns to sustain the plant. Bailey then decided that Grayville, ten miles south of Browns, would be a better location. On September 20, 2005 the Surface Transportation Board gave Bailey permission for his newly formed Browns, Grayville & Poseyville Railway to acquire the line, gain it back from trail use, re-lay the track and operate it. Bailey has since purchased the line from Ownesville Terminal Company and various individuals. He has begun laying rail and repairing grade crossings in Illinois.
Indiana Southwestern Railroad operates the line from Poseyville beyond to Evansville, with a small spur north from Poseyville to Cynthiana (see the Evansville, Mount Carmel and Northern Railroad).
Thanks to Howard E. Espravnik for contributing information about this route.