The American Railway Express Company was created during World War I when the federal government took over operation of the
railroads. The railroad-owned Great Northern Express Company, the Northern Express Company, the Western Express Company joined
with the privately-owned Adams Express Company, American Express Company, Wells Fargo Inc. and Southern Express Company to
form (July 1, 1918) a single express company called American Railway Express Company. George Taylor, president of American
Express Company, became president of the new company. After the war, it proved difficult to return the companies to individual
ownership. However, at the urging of the Interstate Commerce Commission, the railroads organized the Railway Express Agency
which purchased the American Railway Express Company (March 1, 1929).
•Bibliography: V.S. Roseman, RAILWAY EXPRESS AGENCY: AN OVERVIEW (1992).
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