|Southern Pacific Railroad|
|Docket: 25897||10/24/1969||Section: 1(18)|
|Application for authority to abandon part of its Yoakum Branch, Victoria Subdivision extending from Milepost 119.50 near Yoakum to Milepost 134.66 at Cuero and from Milepost 137.59 at River Junction to Milepost 151.63, the end of the branch at Yorktown, in the County of DeWitt State of Texas. In addition, the abandonment of operations of the Yoakum Branch train over the said segments of trackage and over that trackage of the Cuero Branch, Victoria Subdivision, between Milepost 55.48 near Cuero and Milepost 58.00 at River Junction, which is common to the two branches is proposed.|
|Length: 29.200 miles||Citation:|
As of 10-2011 you can still see quite a bit of the ROW. I have noticed in other areas of Texas where the SP has abandoned you cannot see any trace of the ROW.
The subject of this abandonment was the former San Antonio & Aransas Pass mainline from Kenedy to Yoakum. The SP did not actually abandon the physical trackage between Yoakum (MP 119.5) and Cuero (15.16 miles) but effectively abandoned from River Junction to Yorktown (also about 16 miles). The following year, SP petitioned to abandon the trackage it built from Cuero to Stockdale which included the short segment to River Junction (MP 55.48 to MP 58.00) which formerly connected a segment from San Antonio to Sutherland Springs, TX (built as the San Antonio & Gulf Shore or San Antonio & Gulf).
River Junction was created when the former SA&AP bridge across the Guadalupe River became unusable and a short track connecting the former SA&AP mainline and the Cuero-Stockdale line was built to use the newer SP bridge across the Guadalupe west of Cuero. A 1961 photo of the Yoakum to Kenedy local (Yoakum Branch train) which this petition sought to eliminate may be found at http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=318594.
The track between Cuero and Yoakum is in service (as of 2012) and handles coal trains for the Coleto Creek power plant southwest of Victoria. It also handled the KCS from Houston to Victoria prior to KCS rebuilding the former SP line between Rosenburg and Victoria.
As an SPRR engineer assigned to the H&TC divison we were required to protect runs from Yoakum to Hearne. Deadheaded from Houston to Yoakum many a day to.protect the Yoakum extra board. Slow track back in those days until we got to Flatonia and then we had to fight all the Blue Streak trains coming out of HRN. as well as the autoparts coming out of LA. Back in those days we ran trains on timetable schedule and train orders.----Nightmare sometimes when trying to get to HRN. Track speed between Flatonia to Hearne was 70+ mph.