• 1-24-1889 – ITS GLORY DEPARTED – The Denver, South Park and Pacific was one of the few railway enterprises that early paid its original builders a handsome profit upon their investment. They were not only fortunate in the price secured for their property, but as well in the time selected for unloading it, for since it became a branch of the Union Pacific system it has failed to yield a revenue above operating expenses, and within the past few years has fallen considerably behind. The official statement of the road for November, 1888, not only shows decreased earnings, as compared with the year previous, but increased expenses as well: Earnings 1887, $96,272; 1888, $75,740 against expenses of 1887 $95,444 1888 $106,780. This is not a very promising showing for the pioneer road, and augurs very poorly for the future, when the advantages and aggressiveness of the Midland and the prospective early broad-gauging of the Rio Grande are considered. Leadville Evening Chronicle
One has to factor in that Jay Gould immediately manipulated the SP
into a backseat position of servicing the big money producer that Leadville
was and handing the bulk of the traffic to the D&RG. With paying traffic
out of Leadville directed to the D&RG, the South Park was gifted with
chasing traffic over many more miles to Gunnison and the VERY expensive
to operate Alpine Pass route to do it. How could they win ?
Once ownership of the line left the area, the original "personal investment"
in doing what was best for the railroad and the community that it served died
upon the cold "bigger picture" of feeding the transcontinental trunk road that
was the Mother Union Pacific. Omaha did not care if local communities thrived
or died like John Evans and friends did.