SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — When Charles Lincoln Wilson filed to incorporate the first railroad west of the Mississippi, he may have seen a hint of what the Sacramento Valley Railroad would mean for the future of rail travel.

The main difference in an incorporated and unincorporated is the way the business owner’s responsibilities in the businesses activities.

In the event that the business defaults on its loans, the payment for the debt must come from the business if its incorporated while the business owner could be responsible in an unincorporated business.

The Sacramento Valley Railroad would become the first incorporated railroad in California on Aug. 4, 1852. Construction of the 23-mile railroad would begin in 1855.

The mission of the railroad between Sacramento and Folsom was simple: to provide an easier and faster way for some 130,000 gold miners in the foothills to get resupplied in Sacramento and San Francisco.

Wilson’s main plan was to extend the railroad to Marysville, Tehama, Sonora and San Francisco – but the line would never make it to any of these destinations.

Before any rail could be placed, a route needed to be mapped, and Wilson was partnered with survey engineer Theodore Judah, who envisioned a transcontinental railroad. Judah believed that starting the railway in Sacramento and having it travel along the South Fork of the American River to Folsom was the best route.

In August 1855, a group of investors and potential investors were taken on a trial ride of the railroad all the way to Folsom.

The “Sacramento”, “Nevada”, “L.L. Robinson” and the “C.K. Garrison” were the four operating locomotives on the railroad, with passenger cars being built on R Street.

On Feb. 22, 1856, the “Sacramento,” ladened with passenger cars and flatbeds, headed out of the Sacramento station, followed by the “Nevada.” Both arrived in Folsom in time for a “Railroad Ball.”

But in the end, the Sacramento Valley Railroad would never extend beyond Folsom. Instead, it would consolidate with the Folsom and Placerville Railroad to become the Placerville and Sacramento County Railroad on June 12, 1862.

Throughout the remainder of the 1860s, the P&SVRR would battle with the newly created Central Pacific and “The Big Four.”

On Aug. 16, 1865, the Central Pacific took complete control of the SVRR and Leland Stanford ordered the suspension of all passenger traffic to and from the community of Freeport, located in South Sacramento, along the Sacramento River, ending California’s first commercial railroad.