Terre Haute & Alton Railroad

In January 1851, the Illinois legislature chartered the Terre Haute and Alton Railroad Company, and construction began in 1852. On March 1, 1856, the main line from Terre Haute, Indiana, to Alton, Illinois, was completed. In 1852, the Belleville and Illinoistown branch (from Belleville, Illinois, to East St. Louis, Illinois) was chartered; it was completed in 1854. In October 1856, the railroad secured authority to construct an extension from Illinoistown (now East St. Louis) to Alton, thus providing the first railroad connection between Alton and St. Louis, Missouri. In February 1854, the Terre Haute and Alton Railroad and the Belleville and Illinoistown Railroad were consolidated under a single charter by a special act of the legislature. The consolidated line became the Terre Haute, Alton and St. Louis Railroad. In financial distress by 1862, the railroad was sold under foreclosure and was reorganized as the St. Louis, Alton and Terre Haute Railroad.
Paul Selby, Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of Sangamon County, Vol. II (Chicago: Munsell Publishing Company, 1912), 499.