The name "Nickel Plate" will be retained in the proposed merger of our Road into the Norfolk & Western System.
In a joint announcement Felix S. Hales, president of the Nickel Plate; Stuart T. Saunders, president of the Norfolk & Western; and Herman H. Pevler, president of the Wabash, said that after the consolidation, the properties of the Nickel Plate Road and of the Wabash Railroad would be known as the Nickel Plate and Wabash Regions of the new N. & W.
"For over 80 years 'Nickel Plate' has been the popular name for a great railroad," the statement said. "For even longer, the name 'Wabash' has stood for another fine, dependable line. We do not intend to let these respected symbols of reliable railroading disappear from the scene."
The presidents said that for operating reasons, portions of the present Wabash would be included in the Nickel Plate Region, and vice versa, but stressed that the names would remain.
Our Road's nickname first appeared on March 10, 1881 - before the railroad started operation - when the editor of the Norwalk, Ohio, Chronicle wrote of it as "the great New York and St. Louis double-track, nickel-plated railroad." Nickel plating was relatively new and the phrase apparently was to stress the glittering prospects of the new railroad. F. R. Loomis, the editor, was given Complimentary Pass No. 1 in 1882 for originating the name which caught the, public's fancy.
The Wabash Railroad derived its name from the river which flows through Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. The name "Wabash" comes from an Indian word, "waba," meaning "white."
Hearings before the Interstate Commerce Commission in Washington, D. C., on the proposals to consolidate the Norfolk & Western, Nickel Plate, Wabash and the Sandusky Line of the Pennsylvania Railroad, are scheduled to begin October 10.
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