John W. Barriger III

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John Walker Barriger III (December 3, 1899 – December 9, 1976)[1] was an American railroad executive; he successively led the Monon Railroad, Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad, Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad and the Boston and Maine Railroad. In 1969, he was chosen as Railroader of the Year by industry trade journal Modern Railroads (which was acquired by Railway Age in 1992).

Barriger was a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His first railroad jobs were with the Pennsylvania Railroad. He worked as a rodman, as a shop hand, as associate editor of an employee magazine and as an assistant yardmaster. In the late 1920s he worked in investment houses. He helped author the controversial Prince Plan of railroad consolidation and achieved instant fame in doing so. For eight years he worked in federal service as the railroad chief of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. He worked for the Office of Defense Transportation during World War 2. Barriger was the federal manager of the troubled Toledo Peoria and Western Railroad. He help launch Fairbanks Morse into the diesel locomotive business. And he was reorganization manager of the Chicago & Eastern Illinois Railroad and the Monon Railroad.

Barriger succeeded L.F. DeRamus as president of the Monon Railroad on May 1, 1946. As president, Barriger followed an aggressive policy of modernization. He was succeeded on December 31, 1952 by Warren W. Brown.[2] Barriger left the Monon Railroad for a Vice President position on the New York New Haven and Hartford Railroad.

Barriger's papers and railroad library of 10,000 volumes and 600 feet (180 m) of documents are included in the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library at the University of Missouri at St. Louis.


  1. ^ White, John H., Jr. (Spring 1986). "America's most noteworthy railroaders". Railroad History 154: pp. 9–15. ISSN 0090-7847. OCLC 1785797. 
  2. ^ Wozniczka, Denny (reprinted by Monon Railroad Historical and Technical Society), Monon History: Presidents, Receivers and Trustees. Retrieved December 29, 2005.

Trains Magazine February 1953 pages 6 and 7.

Business positions
Preceded by
L.F. DeRamus
President of Monon Railroad
1946 – 1952
Succeeded by
Warren W. Brown
Preceded by
John Francis Nash
President of Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad
1956 – 1964
Succeeded by
Curtis D. Buford
Preceded by
Charles T. Williams
President of Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad
1965 – 1970
Succeeded by
Reginald N. Whitman
Preceded by
President of Boston and Maine Railroad
1973 – 1974
Succeeded by
Preceded by
William B. Johnson
Modern Railways magazine
Man of the Year

Succeeded by
John Shedd Reed