The Chicago, Memphis and Gulf Railroad was incorporated in 1904 as the Dyersburg Northern Railroad. It opened from a junction with an Illinois Central Railroad branch line west of Dyersburg north to Tiptonville, Tennessee, in 1907. The name was changed in 1909, and in 1911 the line was extended to Hickman, Kentucky. The intention was to continue to the Metropolis Bridge over the Ohio River near Paducah, Kentucky via Clinton, Kentucky and Moscow, Kentucky, and so create a low-level trunk line from Memphis. The IC was still promoting the scheme in 1915.
- Poor's Manual of Railroads, Vol. 48 1915 p. 746
- Walker, Mike (2004). SPV's Comprehensive Railroad Atlas of North America - Appalachia and Piedmont. Kent, United Kingdom: Steam Powered Publishing. p. 34. ISBN 1-874745-07-2.
- Gross, Joe (2000). Railroads of North America, Third Edition (Third ed.). Rochester, NY: Railroad Research Publications. p. 61. ISBN 1-884650-10-4.
- "Star Gazette 1907". Archived from the original on November 18, 2007. Retrieved July 30, 2007.