The first railroad built in Madison County was the Chicago & Alton – first known as the Alton & Sangamon or Alton & Springfield. The railroad was spearheaded by Captain Benjamin Godfrey and other Alton businessmen such as Cyrus Edwards, Simeon Ryder, S. Griggs, and Robert Ferguson. Planning stages began in December 1838, and the charter was issued February 27, 1847. Construction began in February 1850, and was completed from Alton to Springfield in 1852. Benjamin Godfrey lived in a railcar, and followed the work as it progressed. He mortgaged all his property to ensure its success.
Became part of the StLA&C in 1857.