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Leisure Prairie RR History p. 2
    In 1896, the Union Pacific and Northern Pacific railroads signed an agreement ending their quarrel over which road would control a proposed mainline through the strategically important Lewshinn area by providing for joint administration of the stretch.  Leasing the rights to the old NCC's Lewshinn terminus, the partnership entity built a standard gauge yard.  It finally purchased the site in 1907 from JoShia's alcoholic son, JoShia M. Gready, Jr., who had gamboled and drank away the bulk of the fortune left him by his father, who had died in 1905.

    Before Jr. could gamble away this money, his wife  had him declared incompetent and took over the family's financial activities.  She established a saw mill, Gready Mills, several miles up the old NCC rails to process timber brought down from family owned lands around Baarstol Mountain.  Finished lumber was shipped to a new reload dock west of Lewshinn via the refurbished narrow gauge, and timber was pulled from the mountain on skid trails for about a year, until Mrs. Gready decided that extending the rails into the show would be more economical.

    She incorporated the mill in order to provide the funds to build the initial trunk line, keeping a large, controlling interest block for herself.  The right of way was legally abandoned from the mill site down to Najidae and the rails taken up to use on part of the new line as a cost cutting measure.


    In 1926, the Strangville chamber of commerce approached the recently widowed Mrs. Gready with a proposal to extend the railroad into the town, citing figures prepared by the town's banker on the benefits of the plan to both town and mill, and the just incidental fact that the railroad she was using was still listed as a common carrier line.  Widow Gready attached to the proposal her decision to upgrade the mill to Lewshinn stretch to standard gauge to eliminate the costly reload problem and promptly sent the company surveyors out to lay out the new routes required.

    Organized as a wholly owned subsidiary corporation of Gready Mills, Inc., the new railroad was named the Leisure Prairie Railroad after the prairie on which Strangville, where the new head office would by prior agreement be located, was situated.  The LP took over general administration of all right of way from Lewshinn to Strangville. The mill operated the NCC itself, with trackage rights to Trajady, where the logging line split off to continue into the mountains.  Sometime during the upgrade the decision was made to standard gauge the whole line up to Strangville and operate dual gauge to Trajady, keeping the NCC as a narrow gauge.

    Standard gauge locomotives were leased from both the UP and NP.  Seeing a chance to one-up its partner, the NP privately insisted on trackage rights from Upper Caladan to Lewshinn on the new LP standard gauge as a condition of its lease agreement.  The NP then built a bridge line to connect with the LP at Upper Caladan.

    When this side agreement became public, an understandably upset UP management became quite irate.  Only some aggressive mediation from Widow Gready controlled the new fight enough to achieve a concession from the NP to share the trackage rights and new bridge line with its partner.

    It quickly became apparent that the LP would need a classification yard at Lewshinn, and the Upper Crabbon to Lewshinn stretch was sold to the NP in exchange for trackage rights for the LP and the necessary funds to complete the new yard, located at the site of the old reload.

    It came as quite a surprise when Widow Gready announced another agreement with the NP/UP joint operation.  This one having the LP take over administration of the peddlers on the jointly operated trackage, with crews provided for all LP trains by the two larger roads.  The Leisure Prairie had, in short order, become a true common carrier, even handling the logs for the competing Kleerkut Logging Company and its parent company, Potlatch Corporation, which had a paper mill in Lewshinn.


   The Great Depression treated the fledgling enterprise as well as most small