Recently, my granddaughter and I took Amtrak to St. Louis for a family event. It’s a darned good thing we weren’t in a big hurry.
By the grace of God and the tender mercies of the Union Pacific, it only took us six hours and 35 minutes to get from Independence to Kirkwood. We arrived an hour and 40 minutes late. By my calculation, we averaged a ballast-scorching 38 miles per hour between our state’s two major metropolitan areas.
I would suspect that 60 years ago someone would have found themselves called on the division superintendent’s carpet for taking the currently scheduled time of four hours and 47 minutes with one of the Missouri Pacific’s Eagles. The consequences of the time it took us would have been too terrible to contemplate.
If gasoline approaching $4 a gallon is a problem, the passenger rail service is not a very good solution.