Minnesota Transfer Railway

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Minnesota Transfer Railway
Reporting markMTFR
LocaleMinneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota
Dates of operation1883–1987
SuccessorMinnesota Commercial Railway
Track gauge4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Length100 miles

The Minnesota Transfer Railway (reporting mark MTFR) was a short line railroad in the United States.

It was owned by nine major railroads serving the Twin Cities: the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad, the Chicago Great Western Railway, the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific Railroad, the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad, the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis and Omaha Railway, the Great Northern Railway, the Minneapolis and St. Louis Railway, the Minneapolis, St. Paul and Sault Ste. Marie Railway and the Northern Pacific Railway to which it provided transfer and terminal services, as well as serving local industrial customers. It served to funnel up to 3,500 cars a day through the St. Paul freight yards as well as originating and delivering up to 400 carloads of freight from industries located on its lines.[1]

The midway yard which is part of it has 7 parts: • C yard - 27 tracks, westbound arrival tracks • J yard - 13 tracks, cars bound for local industries on the MTRY • P yard - 29 tracks, eastbound arrival, departure & classification tracks • A yard - 42 tracks, westbound classification & departure tracks • B yard - 8 tracks, arrival/departure tracks • F yard - storage tracks • R yard - RIP tracks

MTFR 200, an Alco RS-3, is preserved in operating condition at the Illinois Railway Museum. MTFR 62, one of five Alco S-1 on the MTFR, is preserved in stored condition at the Hub City Heritage Museum [1] in Oelwein, Iowa.


  1. ^ Donovan, Frank P. "Gateway to the Northwest: The Story of The Minnesota Transfer Railway" (Self-published, 1954). The book is scarce but sometimes available on Amazon or from other used book sources.

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