Serving Chicago, St. Louis, Little Rock, Texarkana, Dallas, San Antonio and Laredo or Houston and intermediate points
Amtrak train numbers: 21 and 22; Houston section 23 and 24
Predecessor railroad train numbers: Missouri Pacific 21 and 22
In 1948, the Missouri Pacific Railroad inaugurated a new streamlined train, the Texas Eagle, running between St. Louis and either El Paso, Laredo, or Houston, Texas. The name fit in with Missouri Pacific's general train naming scheme, which also included such trains as the Colorado Eagle (St. Louis to Denver via Pueblo) and the Missouri River Eagle (St. Louis to Omaha).
The Texas Eagle did not survive Amtrak's 1971 takeover of most passenger train service in the United States, but in 1973, Amtrak began operating a train over a portion of the route between Fort Worth and Laredo called the Inter-American, with a connection available at Fort Worth for service to Chicago on the Texas Chief (later renamed the Lone Star).
Within a couple of years, the Inter-American had been extended to St. Louis over the old Texas Eagle route, running three days a week, and then extended to Chicago in 1976. When the Lone Star was discontinued in 1979, a Houston section was added to the now daily Inter-American, with the train splitting and combining in Temple.
In the early 1980s, the train returned to a 3-day-a-week schedule, the Houston section was eliminated, and the remaining portion was cut back to a southern terminus at San Antonio. Departure and arrival times were changed to allow for the operation of a through sleeping car to Los Angeles, carried on the Sunset Limited. With these changes, the train was renamed the Eagle.
Condensed historical timetables:
READ DOWN READ UP
(1956) (1975) (1980) (1980) (1975) (1956)
----- ----- 11:00A Dp Chicago Ar 2:00P ----- -----
5:30P 3:15P 4:50P St. Louis 8:45A 2:30P 8:25A
12:30A 10:45P 11:11P Little Rock 12:32A 6:45A 1:45A
3:10A 2:30A 1:42A Texarkana 10:11P 3:15A 11:15P
----- 7:40A 7:00A Dallas 5:40P 10:00P -----
10:40A ----- 3:45P Houston 8:55A ----- 4:15P
1:00P 4:30P 3:04P San Antonio 8:45A 1:10P 1:30P
4:40P 8:20P 6:50P Ar Laredo Dp 5:40A 9:10A 9:05A
The Amtrak Train Names Project