Southern Pacific Railroad Memorabilia Value Guide
The Southern Pacific Railroad started operations in 1856 and stopped service in 1955 for a total period of operations of 99 years.
Since Southern Pacific Railroad began operations before 1860, it was operating at a very early time as a US Railroad. Almost any railroad antique from this early period will have significant value to collectors such as passes, timetables, documents, lanterns, and other railroadiana which wouldn't have much value if it were from a later period. Antiques from this period can be worth hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on the condition, provenance and rarity of the specific item.
Southern Pacific Railroad operated after 1940 which means that many of the most common items you might find will not be especially valuable, these include items like timetables, pinbacks, menus, and other promotional items given out by the railroad. These items tend to be quite common on the market today and typically will be worth only a couple dollars. If a railroad antique is dated 1940 or later, chances are that unless it is a very unique item, it will not be worth much if you want to sell.
Railroads that ran service to as many states as Southern Pacific Railroad are fairly rare because it requires a large railroad to cover ground in 5 different states. Since Southern Pacific Railroad was so large, most items from it will tend to be more common than items from smaller lines. However, large railroads also touched the lives of many more people and were much more well known so while items are more common, there is also a larger demand for them. Value for items from a line like Southern Pacific Railroad can be in a huge range from a couple dollars for something small like a pinback or deck of cards, to thousands for a builder's plate off a famous locomotive or hundreds for a hard to find lantern.
Southern Pacific Railroad Operated Routes in the Following States: Arizona, California, Louisiana, New Mexico, Texas