The Maine Central Railroad began life as the The Penobscot and Kennebec Railroad Co, which was chartered on April 5, 1845. Construction actually began in the spring of 1853 on the line from Waterville to Bangor. The 55-mile stretch was opened in 1855. This connected with the Androscoggin and Kennebec Railroad that went from Danville Junction to Waterville. A railway was now open for the first time from Bangor to Portland, and points south. On November 1, 1856 the Waterville to Bangor line was leased to and operated by the Androscoggin and Kennebec Railroad. In 1862 the two lines merged and renamed themselves the Maine Central Railroad. Throughout the 19th and the first half of the 20th centuries Maine Central Railroad acquired smaller lines, including the European & North American, to become the largest railroad in Maine. By 1882 Maine Central Railroad owned 58 locomotives, 1,119 cars (25 passenger cars, 25 baggage, mail, or express cars, 645 box cars, 474 platform cars, and 40 service cars). The company either owned or leased almost 355 miles of track.
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