Kirkwood, Mo., has been awarded a membership in Union Pacific's Train Town USA Registry as part of the railroad's year-long 150th anniversary celebration.
Kirkwood received an official Train Town USA resolution signed by Union Pacific Chairman Jim Young, and Kirkwood's historical connection with Union Pacific will be featured at www.up150.com.
"We are proud to recognize Kirkwood as we commemorate our railroad's sesquicentennial celebration and growing up together," said Ben Jones, Union Pacific director - Public Affairs for Missouri and Kansas. "Union Pacific has been part of the country's fabric throughout the railroad's 150-year history. That bond between us and the nearly 7,300 communities we serve continues to strengthen.
"Our shared heritage with Kirkwood is a source of pride as we remember our past while serving and connecting our nation for years to come."
As the first planned suburb west of the Mississippi River, and an early railroad commuter suburb, Kirkwood owes its very existence to the railroad. The city was named after James Pugh Kirkwood, chief engineer for the Pacific Railroad.
The main line was built through Kirkwood by the Pacific Railroad in 1853. The Missouri Pacific Railway was created in 1876 by the investors who purchased the Pacific Railroad.
The Kirkwood depot, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, was built in 1893 and is a favorite subject of local and national photographers.
A second main line track through Kirkwood was constructed in 1945. Missouri Pacific and Union Pacific merged in 1982.