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The Santa Fe began building southeast from Phoenix to Florence on 1902 under the name Phoenix and Eastern Railroad. It reached Hayden in 1904. In 1907 it was sold to the Southern Pacific and was operated by the Arizona Eastern Railroad. The Arizona Eastern Railroad was merged into SP in September 1955.
Several changes have occurred on the line. The Magma Arizona Railroad connected the copper mine and smelter at Superior with the Arizona Eastern Railroad at Magma. The Magma Arizona was built as a narrow gauge line in 1915 was converted to standard gauge in 1923. The Arizona Eastern extended the line east from Winkleman to Christmas in 1911. This extension was abandoned in 1961. The San Manuel Arizona Railroad was built south of Hayden to the copper smelter in San Manuel in 1953. More changes came to Magma in 1962 when the SP constructed a new line to connect Magma with the 1920 line between Picacho and Phoenix. The SP then removed the track between Poston and Dock (southeast of Chandler) in 1964. This new line became the route for traffic between Phoenix and Tucson. In August 1986, the line east of Magma was sold to Kennecott Copper and operated as the Copper Basin Railway. All Hayden Branch pictures are on Disk 57.
San Manuel Arizona