www.txrrhistory.com - Tower 213 - Floydada

A Junction of the Quanah, Acme & Pacific Railway and the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway

This interlocker, located on the southeast corner of the high plains town of Floydada, was a junction of the Quanah, Acme and Pacific (QA&P) Railway and the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe (AT&SF) Railway. The Floydada connection between these two railroads was the focus of a long legal battle in the 1930's as the QA&P, owned by the Frisco, sought to interchange transcontinental traffic at Floydada while the Santa Fe resisted, preferring an existing Frisco interchange at Avard, Oklahoma. The QA&P eventually won the battle before the Interstate Commerce Commission, and the Floydada gateway soon became a key link for Frisco transcontinental traffic sold by an aggressive QA&P marketing department.

The junction at Floydada was basically a large wye, with the short side of the wye providing a through route between the two railroads. The location was on the edge of Floydada where a large tract of land was encompassed by the wye to facilitate industrial expansion. In 1959, an automobile distribution facility was built adjacent to the wye and expanded twice in the 1960s. Sometime in the early 1960s, the junction was interlocked as Tower 213, becoming one of the last numbered interlockers authorized by the Railroad Commission of Texas.

In the 1970's, Frisco and Santa Fe agreed to redirect their interchanges to Avard, and this doomed the QA&P. The last train to Quanah operated on May 5, 1981 and the QA&P tracks were removed from Paducah to Floydada in 1982. Some years later, the Santa Fe also abandoned its branch into Floydada.

Modern Photo - Tower 213 Site (c. 1998)

Above: The vegetation still follows the curves of the tracks in this area of Floydada where the large wye was located. (Jim King photo)
Below: This photo, probably from the 1960s, faces west showing the east-west spur off the wye that led to a large automobile receiving
yard from which vehicle distributions were made by truck throughout west Texas. After the QA&P was abandoned, the facility became
a junkyard. The tracks exiting the bottom of the photo are the QA&P main line to Quanah. The tracks exiting the right side of the photo
are the Santa Fe tracks to Plainview. (Photo from
The Quanah Route, by Don L. Hofsommer, Texas A&M University Press, 1991)

Location Map - Tower 213

Above: The QA&P arrived at Floydada on a due west heading. The Santa Fe entered Floydada on a
southeast heading continuing more or less straight through town to the Tower 213 wye.
Below: Decades after abandonment, the former wye at Tower 213 remains easily visible from space.

 
Last Revised: 3/7/2010 JGK - Contact the Texas Interlocking Towers Page.