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- March 16 – John Shedd Reed, president of Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway from 1967 to 1986, dies. He was honored by Modern Railways magazine as the Man of the Year for 1970; he was one of the Santa Fe executives in 1976 that told Amtrak it couldn't use the Chief or Super Chief names for its passenger trains saying it "wasn't super any more." Reed was the grandson of John G. Shedd, second president of Marshall Field and founder of Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. Reed served as president of the aquarium from 1984 to 1994. (AP) (Chicago Tribune)
- January 2 – Genesee & Wyoming announces that it has completed the acquisition of an 87.4% stake in Maryland Midland Railway. The transaction is reported to be valued at $29.1 million; Lehigh Cement, the largest customer on Maryland Midland's line, holds the remaining 12.6% stake. (TradingMarkets.com) (GWR)
- December 24 – George Warrington, president of Amtrak 1998-2002, dies of pancreatic cancer. Before being promoted to president, he served as president of Amtrak's Norteast Corridor business unit from 1992 to 1998, Deputy Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Transportation from 1990 to 1992, and started his railroad career with New Jersey Transit in 1979.
- December 4 – The United States Supreme Court issues a unanimous decision in a suit brought by CSX Transportation against the state of Georgia. CSX alleged that the method that Georgia used to assess the railroad's property value within the state was improper. Lower courts agreed with the state, citing the 1976 Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act but the Supreme Court disagreed saying the act "prohibits States from discriminating against railroads by taxing railroad property more heavily than other commercial property in the State." (Jurist) (AP)
Nickname for a stretch of Metra commuter rail line and BNSF freight line between Chicago and Aurora, Illinois, where commuter trains and freight trains commonly attain high speeds.
- January 25
- 1851 – The Long Island Rail Road emerges from a receivership that was brought on by the opening of the New York and New Haven Railroad in Connecticut.
- 1901 – The Lake Erie Alliance and Wheeling Railroad, later to become part of the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern Railroad, is organized in Ohio.
- 1901 – The Port Huron Southern Railroad, later to become the Port Huron and Detroit Railroad, is chartered in Michigan.
- 1948 – Santa Fe locomotive #19L, leading the Super Chief, loses braking ability while preparing to depart Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal; the train crashes through a steel bumper post and then a concrete wall located at the end of the dead-end track, and ultimately comes to rest with the front half of the locomotive dangling 20 feet (6 m) above the street below.
- 1954 – Santa Fe's RDCs running as train number 80, the San Diegan, strike a truck in Cardiff, California.