FOOLISH FOUR PORTFOLIO
History of the Dow
The Dow 1884-1886

By Randy Befumo (TMF Templr)

Welcome to our History of the Dow collection, written in 1996 to celebrate the Dow's 100th year anniversary. We start with some pre-history, Charles Dow's first "averages" reported on occassionally in the precursor to the Wall Street Journal. The principal focus was on the growth stocks of the late 19th century -- railroads and other transportation companies -- but on May 26, 1896, Dow split the transportation and industrials into two averages... and the rest is history.

You can read some of that history by clicking on those links down on the bottom of the page.

July 3, 1884 (Customer's Afternoon Letter, nine railroads, a steamship line, and one communications company)

Chicago & North Western
D. L. & W.
Lake Shore
New York Central
St. Paul
Northern Pacific pfd.
Union Pacific
Missouri Pacific
Louisville & Nashville
Pacific Mail (steamship)
Western Union (communications)

February 16, 1885 (10 railroads, a steamship line, and one communications company)

Central Pacific
Central RR of New Jersey
Chicago Milwaukee & St. Paul
Chicago North Western
Delaware & Hudson Canal
Delaware Lackawanna & Western
Louisville & Nashville
Missouri Pacific
New York Central
Union Pacific
Pacific Mail Steamship
Western Union

January 2, 1886 (10 railroads, a steamship line, and one communications company)

Chicago Milwaukee & St. Paul
Chicago North Western
Delaware & Hudson Canal
Delaware Lackawanna & Western
Lake Shore Railroad
Louisville & Nashville
Missouri Pacific
Northern Pacific pfd.
New York Central
Union Pacific
Pacific Mail Steamship
Western Union

April 2, 1894 (First true industrial production stock added. Can you spot it?)

American Sugar
Chicago Milwaukee & St. Paul
Chicago Burlington & Quincy
Chicago Rock Island & Pacific
Chicago North Western
Delaware & Hudson Canal
Delaware Lackawanna & Western
Louisville & Nashville
Missouri Pacific
Northern Pacific pfd.
Union Pacific
Western Union

May 26, 1896 (First all industrials list -- 12 stocks)

American Cotton Oil
American Sugar
American Tobacco
Chicago Gas
Distilling & Cattle Feeding
General Electric
Laclede Gas
National Lead
North American Company
Tennessee Coal & Iron
U.S. Leather pfd.
U.S. Rubber

Continue »

 History of the Dow

  • The Dow 1884-1886
  • The Dow Today
  • Charles Dow, Revolutionary
  • Dow's Theory
  • Dow Jones Averages
  • Dow Mechanics