Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,439 pages of information and 233,876 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
1825 February 17th. Business in Parliament. Manchester and Bolton Railway. 
1825 February 23rd. Business in Parliament. 
1825 March 2nd. Business in Parliament. 
1825 July. The bill presented to Parliament was rejected. 
1831 It was sanctioned to convert the Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal into a railway and to build the Kearsley branch - a total length of 11 miles. This proposal was subsequently modified; the railway was built parallel to the canal from Salford to Clifton Junction, and then took a direct route to Bolton, and was opened on May 29th, 1838 - see Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal Navigation and Railway
1838 Preliminary opening of the railway, with trains running between Salford station and Bolton, prior to its public opening. At that time the company had six locomotives - Fairfield, Victoria, Manchester, Bolton (made by Edward Bury and Co of Liverpool), and Forester and Buck (made by George Forrester and Co of Liverpool). Four more were on order from William Fairbairn and Sons.
There were two noticeable features about this line: (1) The trains ran on the right-hand and not the left-hand pair of metals; and (2) the rails were laid on longitudinal wooden sleepers, then being introduced on the Great Western Railway. 
1924 The canal still exists, and is the property of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway.