About the Santa Fe Historical Society
Emporia, Kansas

(Compiled by Steve Sandifer)

Emporia, Kansas, was a major hub on the Santa Fe. Every westbound from Kansas City ran through here. In the eastern part of town, the line from Topeka and the Ottawa cut-off come together at Emporia Jct. West about 15 miles at Ellinor, the main lines split with one headed to Newton, LaJunta, and Raton while the southern route went to Wellington, Amarillo, Clovis, and Belen. However, despite its critical location, Emporia played second fiddle to Topeka with its car and engine shops, Argentine with the largest yard on the system, and Newton and Wellington to the west. Kansas had many branch lines serving the agricultural and ranching communities. Emporia was the hub for branch lines radiating through Strong City to Abilene and Osborne, Barnard and Superior (NE), south through the flint hills to Eldorado, north to Burlingame and Alma, and the Howard Branch to Moline and Virgil, and originally to Chanute through Benedict. In the 2000 census, Emporia claimed 26,760 residents.

James Burke Map

Our tour of Emporia will be divided into several pages:

9/1/73 map

Yard Overview

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