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Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway Company


SKU: 2491
Product Details

Beautifully engraved antique stock certificate from the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway Company dating back to the 1880's. This document was printed by the Franklin Bank Note Company and measures approximately 11 1/4" (w) by 6 3/4" (h).

This piece features a pair of vignettes - an industry scene to the left, and a train at a station to the right.


The images presented are representative of the piece(s) you will receive. When representative images are presented for one of our offerings, you will receive a certificate in similar condition as the one pictured; however dating, denomination, certificate number and issuance details may vary.

Historical Context

The Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway (SLS&E) was founded in Seattle, Washington, on April 28, 1885, with three tiers of purposes

  • Build and run the initial line to the town of Ballard, bring immediate results and returns to investors
  • Exploit resources east in the valleys, foothills, Cascade Range, and Eastern Washington in 19th-century style, attracting more venture capital
  • Boost a link to a transcontinental railroad for Seattle, the ultimate prize for incorporation.

The line was completed from Seattle to Sumas at the border, with British Columbia, Canada, connecting with the Canadian Pacific transcontinental at the border at Huntingdon, British Columbia, now part of the City of Abbotsford.

The SLS&E also built and ran branches from Seattle through Bothell, on to Woodinville, to Sallal Prairie (just past North Bend); Salmon Bay (the industrial district of the town of Ballard); and Spokane to Davenport. Toward the latter end, one goal was creating a rail connection to North Dakota via Wallula, an outpost on the Columbia River in the early decades of railroad booms, near the present Tri-Cities.

Local historian William Speidel reported that Henry Villard, tycoon of the Northern Pacific Railway (NP), had the federal rights and had the line through Wallula built. The SLS&E was first incorporated to build a line from the Seattle harbor in old Downtown, along Elliott Bay to the lumber and fishing town of Ballard.

The line eventually was controlled by the Northern Pacific.