Moffat Road History
David Halliday Moffat, youngest of 9, born 1839 in Washingtonville, NY came to Denver March 18th, 1860. He operated Woolworth and Moffat Dry Goods Store, became Post Master, and was the Adjunct General of the Colorado Territories 1861.Â
In 1881 he became the president of the First National Bank, and then the President of the Denver Rio Grande Railroad. David Moffat built the narrow gauge "Denver and Pacific Railroad" that ran from Denver to Cheyenne, Wyoming. He owned over 100 gold and silver mines and the railroads that serviced them. He had more wealth than most, valued at 25 million dollars.Â
In 1904, he started building the "Denver Northwestern & Pacific Railroad" - the highest standard gauge railroad ever built in the United States.
The railroad went from Utah Junction (Denver) over Rollins Pass (11,660 feet above sea level) through the Grand Valley and terminated in Craig, Colorado. Moffat originally planned the railroad to go all the way to Salt Lake City, but when he died and the financing evaporated, the line ended up terminating at Craig.Â Click here to view maps of the Moffat Road.
The "Moffat Road" was intended to put Denver on a transcontinental railroad but that didn't happen until 1928 when the Moffat Tunnel (6.2 miles long - the third longest in the country) was finished. That was 17 years after David Moffat had died.
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