A Crossing of the Texas & New Orleans Railroad and the Angelina & Neches River Railroad
Lufkin has been a railroad town since its founding by the Houston East & West Texas (HE&WT) Railroad in 1882. Ten years later, it became the county seat of Angelina County and it has been a center for the east Texas lumber industry since then. In 1900, the Angelina & Neches River (A&NR) Railroad was chartered to serve lumber interests in Angelina County, eventually building east into Nacogdoches County. The A&NR crossed the HE&WT north of Lufkin at a community known as Prosser. In 1899, the HE&WT came under Southern Pacific control, and in the late 1920's, it was leased to, and eventually merged with, Southern Pacific's Texas & New Orleans (T&NO) subsidiary.
In 1936, the Railroad Commission of Texas (RCT) authorized Tower 182 as a manual interlocker at the A&NR/T&NO crossing in Prosser. This designation as a manual interlocker is interesting because it is not the same as a cabin interlocker. If it was not a cabin interlocker, then it was either a manned tower, or perhaps some kind of manual gate that did not involve a cabin structure. While Prosser has been swallowed by the growth of Lufkin, and Union Pacific has succeeded SP, the A&NR continues to operate over the remnants of the original line including Tower 182, which remains in use by both railroads as a crossing and a traffic exchange point.
Site Photos, Tower 182 (photos by Jim King, December 2007)
Above: Facing east along the A&NR, two tank cars sit on the exchange track located in the southwest quadrant of the crossing. The diamond
is located between the stop sign and the metal cabinet. Another exchange track switch appears to be visible in the distance, but it is not
known whether it is still in use. The crossing does not appear to be used frequently.
Below: In this telephoto view of the crossing, two small metal posts are visible on the southeast and northwest sides of the diamond. They resemble
interlock controls seen at other sites (for instance, see closeup at Tower 103).
Satellite Image, Prosser Crossing