Railroad 100% Embroidered Patch Collectible - Pennsylvania Railroad 4" X 3 3/8"
The Pennsylvania Railroad (reporting mark PRR) was an American Class I railroad, founded in 1846. Commonly referred to as the "Pennsy", the PRR was headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The PRR was the largest railroad by traffic and revenue in the U.S. throughout the first two-thirds of the twentieth century and was at one time the largest publicly traded corporation in the world. At its peak, it controlled about 10,000 miles (16,000 km) of rail line; in the 1920s it carried about three times the traffic (measured by ton-miles of freight) as other railroads of comparable length, such as Union Pacific or Santa Fe. The only rival was New York Central, which carried around three-quarters of PRR's ton-miles. During its history, the PRR merged with or had an interest in at least 800 other rail lines and companies. The corporation still holds the record for the longest continuous dividend history: it paid out annual dividends to shareholders for more than 100 years in a row. At one point the budget for the PRR was larger than that of the U.S. government; at its peak it employed about 250,000 workers. In 1968, the Pennsylvania Railroad merged with its rival, the New York Central Railroad, to form the Penn Central Transportation Company. The Interstate Commerce Commission required that the ailing New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad be added in 1969. A series of events including inflation, poor management, abnormally harsh weather and the withdrawal of a government-guaranteed $200-million operating loan forced the Penn Central to file for bankruptcy protection on June 21, 1970. The viable parts of the Penn Central system were transferred in 1976 to Conrail, which began earning a profit in 1981. The Norfolk Southern Railway and CSX Transportation acquired Conrail in approximately equal portions in 1999, with Norfolk Southern now owning most of the former Pennsylvania Railroad, including the old Pennsy Main Line across Pennsylvania.