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PRR Subsidiary and Successor Records

For an overview of all holdings, refer to the series title listing for MG-286:

Major Companies and Subsidiaries (Penn Central Corporation, Penn Central Transportation Company, New York Central Railroad, Erie Railroad, Erie-Lackawanna Railway, Lehigh Valley Railroad)

Minor PRR Subsidiaries (listed in alphabetical order on three connected web pages)

Company charters, deeds, agreements, other legal instruments:

If you are interested in company charters, deeds, agreements and other fundamental legal instruments for a particular subsidiary, try looking them up in our microfilm copy of the Index to Valuable Papers Files, ca. 1850-[ca. 1940s] (127 microfilm rolls, #RRV-1073-1099) {#286m.98}. You can then go to the Valuable Papers Files, circa 1850-1967 (157 cu. ft.) {#286m.167} series itself, which is not on microfilm, to see the actual documents referred to in the index. (Cautionary Note: The Archives does not hold the complete set of Valuable Papers originals, only a sampling that we were allowed to remove from Penn Central headquarters in Philadelphia around 1990. We went drawer by drawer and tried to pull original charters, deeds and merger agreements. So, there may be documents referred to in the Index microfilm that are not here to look at. Also, the microfilm of the Index was made by the PRR in 1951. It is possible, thus, that a few of the items pulled and brought back to the Archives were added to the Valuable Papers AFTER 1951, and thus are not represented on the microfilmed Index.)

PRR Company Histories:

Histories written for the PRR at various times may have chapters or sections on subsidiary companies. Try the J. Elfreth Watkins History of the PRR, 1846-1896 (2 15mm microfilm rolls, RR-376-77, S.R. Vault); the Centennial History of the PRR, 1846-1946; and the Histories of Various Companies, [ca. 1934-1965]. All are listed under the PRR Secretary's Office, as are several other history-related series.

PRR Altoona Shops:

In addition to the records of the Vice President of the Altoona Works in our Manuscript Group-286, you may wish to consult a published work entitled "A Special History Study: Pennsylvania Railroad Shops and Works, Altoona, Pennsylvania" by John C. Paige, 1989. A copy is available for use on the shelves of the Archives search room.

Reading Railroad Records:

Although the Reading Railroad never became a subsidiary of the PRR, the State Archives does hold some materials relating to the Reading in our Manuscript Group 199. Do a word search through the title list for this group for the word "Reading". In particular, {series #199m.98} contains mechanical engineering drawings of Reading locomotives and rolling stock. We also received from the Penn Central a subset of architectural drawings of stations (part 1) (PDF) (part 2) (PDF) {series #286m.254} originally built along the Reading Line.