The Midnight Special (train)

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The Midnight Special was the name of a passenger train formerly operated by the Chicago and Alton Railroad and its successor, the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad. The train ran on an overnight schedule, and in later years carried the last regularly scheduled Pullman sleeping car between Chicago, Illinois and St. Louis, Missouri. The train made its final run on April 30, 1971, although Amtrak continued several other passenger trains over the same route traversed by the Midnight Special.

This Midnight Special is not the same train as in the famous Lead Belly song "Midnight Special." Some have written that the song refers to the Southern Pacific's Golden Gate Limited, but no train by that name ever ran on the Southern Pacific. More likely the song refers to the Missouri Pacific's Houston to New Orleans train called the Houstonian which departed Houston's Union Station shortly before midnight.