A Southern Regional Railway- 1930's - 1940's
Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown Railroad

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The Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown Railroad (GN&A) was a freight and passenger short line railroad operating in the state of Arkansas. It had a main lime extending only 27 miles from Ashdown to Nashville, Arkansas. Normally, we would not include such a short line in our list of 30's and 40's railroads, but this little line was a very strategic one, providing a bridge from the west to the east for the developing Kansas City Southern System. The line was started in1907 as the Memphis Paris and Gulf, with great ambitions. It settled down as a short lime hauling logs to a sawmill in Nashville, grew to part of a connector for lines running from Hot Springs, Arkansas to Texarkana by 1915. WW1, the growth of the auto and reduction in timber resources caused a recession and the MP&G was restructured as the Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown, a short line that ran between Nashville and Ashdown. The growth of the quarry and cement business gave the GN&A a revival until acquired by the KCS in 1998 as part of their expansion. The 1931 schedule shows only a couple of motor cars carrying passengers between Nashville and Ashdown. Passenger service was gone by 1947.
Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown - 1931

Short history of the Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown Railroad (GN&A)
1906 - A charter was granted the corporate title of Memphis, Paris & Gulf, a standard gauge road from Nashville, Arkansas, to Ashdown, Arkansas, 25 miles to the southwest. Eventual terminal points were hoped to be Memphis, Tennessee, and Paris, Texas. Short term goals were to transport logs to the lumber company in Nashville.
1906 - Grading, purchase of rails, ties and a locomotive proceed.
1907 - First load of logs arrives at the sawmill in Nashville.
1907 - In the winter of 1907 the towns of Nashville and Ashdown are linked,
1907 - In December passenger service is started.
1908 - Plans are made to extend the MP&G toward Hot Springs where it would connect to other short lines to reach Hot Springs.
1908-11 - MP&G prospers and Hot Springs extension approved.
1913 - Track laying begins on Hot Springs extension.
1914 - Bridge over Ouachita River completed.
1915 - Trains run from Hot Springs connections to MP&G, and to Texarkana, through connections with KCS at Ashdown.
1915-18 - War years bring financial strains on the MP&G.
1922 - MP&G sold to some initial stockholders and reorganized as the Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown Railroad.
c 1922 - The GN&A authorized to operate only from Shawmut to Ashdown, 61 miles.
1922-26 - Automobile traffic and logged out operating area cause GN&A to tear up rails between Murfreesboro and Hot Springs.
1926 - By 1926, the Murfreesboro Nashville Southwestern Railway had taken over operations between these two towns, and the GN&A became a 32mile line from Nashville to Ashdown.
1927 - Ideal Cement Company purchases GN&A and GN&A survives.
1931 - GN&A operates two motor cars per day between Nashville & Ashdown.
1947 - Passenger service was discontinued in 1947.
1951 - Steam disappeared from the roster of the GN&A when a 660 horsepower diesel was acquired.
1954 - 75% of GN&A business is quarry rock and cement.
1960-66 - GN&A works with Army Corps of engineers to protect the railroad and cement quarry from inundation after the Millwood dam is built, Line is successfully relocated and the quarry saved.
1998 - GN&A acquired by KCS as part of KCS west to east system expansion.

Graysonia Nashville & Ashdown - May 3, 1931
Our Sources
Private Collection of Richard R. Parks(rp)
Wikipedia the free Encyclopedia [web](wik)
Official Guides- Various editions
"Shortline Railroads of Arkansas's, by Clifton E. Hull, Copyright 1969 by the University of Oklahoma Press)
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Copyright Richard Parks, April 27, 2009