Buffalo, Rochester and Pittsburgh Railway Company (Issued to William Emlen Roosevelt)
Beautifully engraved antique stock certificate from the Buffalo, Rochester and Pittsburgh Railway Company dating back to the early 1900's. This document, which is signed by the company Vice President and Assistant Secretary, was printed by the Franklin Bank Note Company and measures approximately 12" (w) by 7 1/4" (h).
This certificate features a pair of great vignettes - a train at a station at the left and a mining scene at the right.
The Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway was primarily a coal hauling railroad which ran from the coal fields of central Pennsylvania to the ports of Rochester & Buffalo. In Western New York, the lines formed a "Y" shape connecting Buffalo, Rochester, and Salamanca. The line ran north from Salamanca to Ashford Junction where it split and continued to Rochester and Buffalo.
The predecessors of the BR&P in Western New York began on October 6, 1869 when New York State granted a charter to the Rochester & State Line Railroad from Rochester south through Scottsville, Caledonia, Perry, Castile, Portageville, Belfast, Belmont and Wellsville on its way to the Pennsylvania state line. Shortly after it was chartered, vast coal deposits were discovered near Ridgeway, Pennsylvania. In 1872 the Rochester & State Line changed its charter to make Salamanca its southern terminus. In nearby Carollton it would connect with the Buffalo, Bradford & Pittsburgh Railroad which came north from the coal fields.
On January 20, 1881 the Rochester & State Line Railroad was sold to a New York syndicate which incorporated the Rochester & Pittsburg Railroad on January 29, 1881. The Rochester & Pittsburg Railroad ambitiously began building a number of linked railroad companies extending south from Salamanca with the ultimate goal of reaching Pittsburgh. The company was short lived and by 1885 was bankrupt.
The Rochester & Pittsburg Railroad was purchased on October 16, 1885 by Adrian Iselin, one of the Directors of the R&P, and was broken into the Pittsburgh & State Line Railroad Company, which operated in Pennsylvania, and the Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburgh Railroad Company which operated the New York sections.
On March 10, 1887 the two companies were reunited as the Buffalo, Rochester & Pittsburgh Railway Company. The BR&P continued until January 1, 1932 when it was purchased by the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad.
The BR&P was a major hauler of coal and operated the car ferries Ontario No. 1 and Ontario No. 2 to haul coal to Cobourg, Ontario, Canada.
William Emlen Roosevelt
William Emlen Roosevelt (April 30, 1857 – March 15, 1930) was a prominent New York City banker who held a wide range of positions in numerous organizations and was a cousin of United States President Theodore Roosevelt. He was president of Roosevelt & Son, the banking firm founded by his father James Alfred Roosevelt. He was director of the Chemical Bank of New York, the Gallatin National Bank, and the Astor National Bank, and later sat on the boards of the Grand Hanover and the Bank of New York. He was president of Roosevelt Hospital, founded by his distant cousin James H. Roosevelt. He was an officer of the National Guard for 16 years, major and quartermaster of the First Brigade. Roosevelt became involved in telecommunications companies, formed the Mexican Telegraph Company and Central and South American Telegraph Company, and was eventually director of the International Telephone and Telegraph Company.
He also owned the James Alfred Roosevelt Estate at Cove Neck in Nassau County, New York. Theodore Roosevelt and he had a very close relationship as cousins. Emlen was not interested in politics other than to support his cousin's bids for public office, and Theodore, busy with conservation advocacy, had little time to attend to financial matters. Thus, "Cousin Emlen" was Theodore's financial adviser before, during and after his presidency.