The union pacific corporation merged the denver and rio grande western railroad the st louis southwestern railway and the spcsl corporation into their union pacific railroad but did not merge the southern pacific transportation company into the union pacific railroad instead the union pacific corporation merged the union pacific railroad . In 1885 the southern pacific leased the central pacific railroad until eventually merging with it in 1959 through the years the line expanded to more than 13000 miles of rail covering most of the southwestern united states. The union pacific corporation purchased the southern pacific rail corporation which included the southern pacific transportation company the denver and rio grande western railroad the st louis southwestern railway and the spcsl corporation the union pacific corporation originally purchased a portion of the southern pacific rail corporation . The southern pacific transportation company reporting mark sp earlier southern pacific railroad and southern pacific company and usually called the southern pacific or from the railroads initials espee was an american class i railroad it was absorbed in 1988 by the company that controlled the denver and rio grande western railroad and eight years later became part of the union . Denver and rio grande western railroad company denver and rio grande western railroad company drgw former american railroad chartered in 1870 as the denver and rio grande railway drg it began with a narrow gauge line extending from denver colorado south to new mexico and west to salt lake city utah conversion to standard gauge track
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