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Tex-Mex Railroad - Great Plains-West Rail Gallery
Texas-Mexican Railroad

 

TM GP7 852 - in Laredo, Texas in 1996. - Tommy Schults Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

The Texas-Mexican Railway (now part of the KCS system) as photographed by Jay Glenewinkel, as well as his own collection.


A Brief History (1856-Today)
The Texas Mexican Railway (Tex Mex) began modestly in 1856, only a decade after Texas gave up its republic for statehood. Investors lay rail from San Diego, Texas, to Corpus Christi, primarily to transport sheep from the inland ranches to the Gulf port. But founder Uriah Lott saw the small railway's future lay to the south with Mexico. He succeeded in laying 25 miles of track from Corpus Christi to Banquete in 1877. Then, after some early setbacks, completed a 162-mile line between Corpus Christi and Laredo nestled along the Rio Grande. By 1881, Tex Mex had become the first United States railroad to arrive at this strategically important gateway to Mexico.

After the turn of the century, the Mexican government acquired control of the Tex Mex and held it in a trust until 1982, when it was sold to the shipping conglomerate Transportacion Maritima Mexicana (TMM). In 1995, TMM sold 49 percent of the rail line to KCSI, striking up a strategic alliance for the opening of a key railroad corridor for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

As of today, the Tex Mex network extends across 557 miles of rail in Texas. The Tex Mex owns 157 miles of main line between Laredo and Corpus Christi and operates on 400 miles of trackage rights between Corpus Christi, Houston and Beaumont. (source: Tex-Mex Railway)

Texas Mexican Railway - Update 03.28.02 (submitted by Jay Glenewinkel)
Looks like another RR has gone into the history books. Effective as of today, the Texas Mexican Railroad is now completely owned and controlled by Mexrail, parent company of TFM Industries. Here is a little information on it.

KCS and partner TMM settled a financial dispute between the two by agreeing to have Mexrail, a holding company that owns the Texas Mexican Railway merge with TFM, the Mexican railroad that KCS and TMM jointly own. Basically, they moved some legal entities around a bit and pulled some money out of one of them.

A few months ago, TMM had faced a looming debt repayment and was trying to roll over the debt into a new issue. Their management was in New York with some KCS honchos on 9/11 trying to sell investors on this new bond issue! Thanks to the turmoil in the financial markets that took place after the terrorist attacks, they couldn't issue new debt. Then Argentina defaulted on its bankers, so Latin America became a place that Americans and Europeans didn't want to put any more money, so that closed off that avenue of capital completely. TMM then turned to TFM, where it dominates the board of directors. They had TFM declare a dividend large enough to pay off the debt. KCS objected and sued. After the two negotiated, they decided to have TFM buy TexMex and pay for it in cash. Since TFM and TexMex are owned by the same companies, it's just a legal maneuvre of paper and control that pulls out the needed cash in the most tax-efficient manner. I know that the two partners had talked for some time of merginf TexMex and TFM and now it's a reality.


Click on the thumbnails to see a larger image.

TM GP7 852 - in Laredo, Texas in 1996. - Tommy Schults Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

 

TM 854 - Retired Tex-Mex GP18 in the shops in Corpus Christi, Texas in 1995. - Tommy Schults Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

 

Tex-Mex GP18 #855 - in the Green Paint Scheme before being painted red. It is seen here Corpus Christi, Texas in 1992. - Tommy Schults Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

TM GP18 #855 - in Corpus Christi, Texas in 1996. Tommy Schults Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

TM GP38-2 #858 - in Corpus Christi, Texas in 1997. This was the very last GP38-2 ever built new from EMD. This unit was built in 1986. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

TM GP60 #867 - pulls a passenger excursion in 1994. - Steve Rude Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

TM 868 - in Corpus Christi, Texas in 1996. - Tommy Schults Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection

Tex-Mex GP60 #869 - at the shops in Laredo, Texas in 1995. - Tommy Shults Photo/Jay Glenewinkel Collection

 

Tex-Mex GP60 #870 - pulls a Corpus Christi bound freight in 1996. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

TM GP40 #1161 - in Corpus Christi, Texas in 1997. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

TM GP40-2 #1178 - at Flatonia, Texas in 1999. - Steve Rude Photo/ Jay Glenewinkel Collection


Featured Photographers:
Jay Glenewinkel, Tommy Schults, Steve Rude

Resources:
The Texas Mexican Railway Company

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Latest update: Thursday, 13 November, 2003

All photos & text © 2002-2003 T. Greuter / Screaming Eagles unless otherwise noted. All Rights Reserved.

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