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Morris and Essex Railroad Co. signed by Samuel J. Tilden - Transfer

Inv# AG2022
Morris and Essex Railroad Co. signed by Samuel J. Tilden - Transfer
State(s): New York
Years: 1866

Stock signed by Samuel J. Tilden.

Samuel Jones Tilden (February 9, 1814 – August 4, 1886) was the Democratic candidate for the U.S. presidency in the disputed election of 1876, one of the most controversial American elections of the 19th century. He was the 25th Governor of New York. A political reformer, he was a Bourbon Democrat who worked closely with the New York City business community, led the fight against the corruption of Tammany Hall, and fought to keep taxes low. Tilden was the first (and until the presidential election of 2000, only) candidate for the Presidency of the United States to not be elected despite receiving an absolute majority of the votes. Tilden was born in New Lebanon in New York State. He was descended from Nathaniel Tilden, an early English settler who came to America in 1634. He studied law at Yale, then transferred to New York University where he graduated in 1837. He was admitted to the bar in 1841, becoming a skilled corporate lawyer, with many railroad companies as clients in the shaky railroad boom decade of the 1850s.

His legal practice, combined with shrewd investments, made him rich. In 1848, largely on account of his personal attachment to Martin Van Buren, he participated in the revolt of the “Barnburners” or Free-Soil faction of the New York Democrats. He was among the few such who did not join the Republican Party and, in 1855, was the candidate of the Soft faction for New York State Attorney General. Tilden became chairman of the Democratic State Committee after the Civil War. After having good relations to William M. Tweed and working closely together with him in the Democratic Party, Tilden came into conflict with the Tweed ring of New York City. Corrupt New York judges were the ring's tools, and Tilden, after entering the New York State Assembly in 1872 to promote the cause of reform, took a leading part in the judges' impeachment trials. By analyzing the bank accounts of certain members of the ring, he obtained legal proof of the principle on which the spoils had been divided. As a reform-spirited Governor in 1874, he turned his attention to a second set of plunderers, the “Canal Ring”, made up of members of both parties who had been systematically robbing New York State through the maladministration of its canals. Tilden succeeded in breaking them up. His successful service as governor gained him the presidential nomination.

During the 1876 presidential election, Tilden won the popular vote over his Republican opponent, Rutherford B. Hayes, proving that the Democrats were once again competitive in the American political process following the Civil War. But the result in the Electoral College was in question because the states of Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina each sent two sets of Electoral Votes to Congress. (There was separately a conflict over one elector from Oregon, who was disqualified on a technicality.) While the Republicans boldly claimed the election, Tilden mystified and disappointed his supporters by not fighting for the prize or giving any leadership to his advocates. Instead he devoted more than a month to the preparation of a complete history of the electoral counts over the previous century to show it was the unbroken usage of Congress, not of the President of the Senate, to count the electoral votes. Upon his defeat, Tilden said, "I can retire to public life with the consciousness that I shall receive from posterity the credit of having been elected to the highest position in the gift of the people, without any of the cares and responsibilities of the office." Tilden is the only candidate for President to garner an absolute majority of all votes cast for President in an election (that is, greater than 50 percent; Tilden garnered 51.5 percent) who was not ultimately elected President in that election.

The Morris and Essex Railroad was a railroad across northern New Jersey, later part of the main line of the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad.

The M&E was incorporated January 29, 1835, to build a line from Newark in Essex County west to and beyond Morristown in Morris County. The first section, from Newark west to Orange, opened on November 19, 1836. Under an agreement signed on October 21, the New Jersey Rail Road provided connecting service from Newark east to Jersey City via the Bergen Hill Cut. The original connection between the two lines was in downtown Newark; the M&E turned south on Broad Street to meet a branch of the NJRR at Market Street. Service to Paulus Hook in what is today Jersey City commenced on October 14, 1836 and passengers could transfer to the Jersey City Ferry and cross to lower Manhattan at the nearby ferry slips.

On January 1, 1838, the M&E was extended their route to Morristown. On October 29 of that year, an agreement was signed to move the NJRR connection to the foot of Centre Street (via the northeast side of Park Place, to the NJRR alignment along the Passaic River), and the track on Broad Street was removed. Through car service began August 1, 1843, with horse power used along the streets, between Broad Street station and the foot of Centre Street.

Continuations opened west to Dover on July 31, 1848, Hackettstown in January 1854, and the full distance to Phillipsburg in 1866.

A new alignment, including a bridge over the Passaic River, was built by the NJRR and opened on August 5, 1854, ending at East Newark Junction with the NJRR main line in Harrison. This eliminated the street running in downtown Newark; those tracks were removed the next year after a lawsuit was filed by Newark.

On March 6, 1857, a supplement to the M&E charter was passed, authorizing it to buy the new alignment (until then owned by the NJRR as their East Newark Branch) and build a new line to Jersey City, as long as it passed under Bergen Hill in a tunnel. With this authority, the M&E became important as a possible competitor to the NJRR, and began negotiations with the Camden and Amboy Railroad. The New Brunswick, Millburn and Orange Railroad was proposed as a connection between the two, allowing for a C&A route to Jersey City without using the NJRR.

The Hoboken Land and Improvement Company operated a ferry across the Hudson River between Hoboken and New York City. Until early 1859 the NJRR paid the HL&I for the business that instead used the NJRR ferry. Because of this, the HL&I decided to help the M&E by building their new alignment, using the New York and Erie Railroad's Long Dock Tunnel. To use the Erie's tunnel a supplement to their charter was needed; this was passed March 8, 1860 after arguments against the bill from the NJRR. Another legal obstacle was the NJRR's monopoly over bridges, granted to the Passaic and Hackensack Bridge Company, invalidated by the state in 1861. The first excursion train operated on the new alignment on November 14, 1862, but a contract required the M&E to continue using the NJRR until October 13, 1863. The next day, regular service began via the new alignment.

On November 1, 1865, the Atlantic and Great Western Railway leased the M&E as part of its planned route to the west. However, the A&GW went bankrupt in 1867 and the lease was cancelled. The Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad leased the M&E on December 10, 1868, connecting to their Warren Railroad at Washington.

In 1868 the Morris & Essex leased the Newark and Bloomfield Railroad, which connected Roseville Avenue to Bloomfield and Montclair, then West Bloomfield.

In 1876 the new tunnel under Bergen Hill opened, after hostilities including a frog war in late 1870 and early 1871, caused by the M&E's attempts to modify the connection between their Boonton Branch, a newer freight bypass, and the Erie tunnel.

The DL&W built the New Jersey Cut-Off, a long low-grade bypass in northwestern New Jersey, opened in 1911 from the M&E at Port Morris west to Slateford Junction just inside Pennsylvania.

On July 26, 1945 the M&E was formally merged into the DL&W. However it remained the Morris and Essex Division, and even today New Jersey Transit calls it the Morris and Essex Lines. In 1960 the DL&W merged with the Erie Railroad to form the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad, becoming part of Conrail in 1976.


  1. New York (Foot of Barclay Street)
  2. New York (Foot of Christopher Street) (ferry)
  3. Hoboken (MP 1.25) (ferry)
  4. West End (MP 3.25)
  5. Seaboard (MP 5)
  6. Kearny Junction (MP7.0)
  7. Harrison (MP 9)
  8. Newark (MP 10) - Junction Newark and Bloomfield Railway
  9. Roseville, Avenue (MP 11.0)
  10. East Orange (MP 12)
  11. Brick Church (MP 13)
  12. Orange (MP 13)
  13. Highland Avenue (MP 14)
  14. Mountain Station (MP 15)
  15. South Orange (MP 16)
  16. Maplewood (MP 17)
  17. Millburn (MP 19)
  18. Short Hills (MP 20)
  19. Summit (MP 22)
  20. Chatham (MP 26)
  21. Madison (MP 28)
  22. Convent (MP 30)
  23. Morristown (MP 32)
  24. Morris Plains (MP 34)
  25. Mount Tabor (MP 38)
  26. Denville (MP 38) - Junction with Boonton Branch
  27. Rockaway (MP 40)
  28. Dover (MP 43) - Junction with Chester Railway
  29. Wharton (MP 44)
  30. Chester Junction (MP 45)
  31. Lake Junction (MP 45) - Junction with Central Railroad of New Jersey
  32. Mount Arlington (MP 47)
  33. Drakesville (MP 48)
  34. Lake Hopatcong (MP 49)
  35. Port Morris Junction (MP 50)
  36. Port Morris (MP 51)
  37. Sussex Branch Junction (MP 53)
  38. Netcong/Stanhope (MP 53)
  39. Waterloo (MP 56) - Junction with Sussex Railroad of New Jersey
  40. Hacketttstown (MP 62)
  41. Port Murray (MP 67)
  42. Washington (MP 71) - Junction with Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad
  43. Broadway (MP 76)
  44. Stewartsville (MP 80)
  45. Phillipsburg Union Station (MP 85)
  46. Easton (MP 85), - Junction with Lehigh Valley Railroad, Central Railroad of New Jersey, and the Lehigh and Susquehanna Railroad


The Boonton Branch was first built as a short branch from the main line at Denville east to Boonton. It was later extended much further east toward Paterson to return to the main line at the west end of Bergen Hill; this opened on September 17, 1870. A realignment was later built at the west end, bypassing Denville and some curves, for a shortcut of both the branch and the main line. In 1903 the Kingsland Tunnel opened as part of a short realignment at Kingsland. The Harrison Cut-Off was also built around this time as a connection from the Boonton Branch at Kingsland south to the main line in Kearny.

The Morris and Essex Extension Railroad was chartered in 1889 and opened later that year, connecting the Boonton Branch to Paterson.

The Newark and Bloomfield Railroad was chartered in 1852 and opened in 1855 as a short branch from the main line at Roseville Avenue/Bloomfield Junction northwest to Montclair via Bloomfield. It was built by the M&E and mostly owned by them. The M&E leased it on April 1, 1868.

The New Jersey West Line Railroad was a failed plan to build a new line across the state; only the part from Summit on the M&E west to Bernardsville was completed, and it was soon renamed the Passaic and Delaware Railroad. The DL&W leased it on November 1, 1882 as a branch of the M&E. The Passaic and Delaware Extension Railroad was chartered in 1890 and opened later that year, extending the line to Gladstone.

The Chester Railroad was incorporated in 1867 and opened in 1872, running from the M&E west of Dover southwest to Chester.

The short Hopatcong Railroad was a branch from the M&E at Hopatcong north to Roxbury. The DL&W bought it in 1892.

The Sussex Railroad stretched north from the M&E at Waterloo (later Stanhope) to Newton and beyond. The DL&W leased it in 1924.

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Condition: Excellent
Item ordered may not be exact piece shown. All original and authentic.
Price: $180.00