Railroads in Lexington, Kentucky, date to the earliest railroading days in the country.
In 1830, the Lexington & Ohio Railroad, the first railroad in Kentucky, was chartered to connect Lexington and Louisville at the Falls of the Ohio and via Frankfort. The line was never completed and collapsed due to the Panic of 1837, and the Lexington & Frankfort Railroad took over the former Lexington & Ohio in 1848.
Other railroads followed, and after consolidation, the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway, the Louisville & Nashville Railroad and Southern Railway emerged as the dominant railroads in the city.
Additionally, the Lexington Railway Company began streetcar operations in 1882. Streetcars ran until 1938.
Lexington Union Station opened on August 4, 1907, and served most railroads passing through Lexington, Kentucky.
Located on Main Street, just west of Walnut Street (now Martin Luther King Boulevard), it served the Chesapeake & Ohio and the Louisville & Nashville until May 1957. The Chesapeake & Ohio moved its passenger operations to another station, and Union Station was demolished in March 1960.
The Southern Railway ran passenger trains through Lexington using a depot on South Broadway — the Cincinnati-to-Jacksonville, Florida, Ponce de Leon and the Cincinnati-to-Miami Royal Palm. It also operated the Carolina Special to various North and South Carolina points.