The state of Tennessee chartered the Memphis, Clarksville & Louisville Railroad to build a line between Paris, Tennessee, and the Tennessee-Kentucky state line. The railroad would connect with the Memphis & Ohio in Paris, Tennessee, and the Louisville & Nashville's Memphis Branch at Guthrie, Kentucky, to create a Louisville-to-Memphis line. The railroad began operations in 1859 and completed its line in November 1861. The Louisville & Nashville supported the Memphis, Clarksville & Louisville from its inception, and the Louisville & Nashville purchased the Memphis, Clarksville & Louisville in 1871.
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