Railways in Luxembourg were initiated in 1845 however it wasn’t until the 25 November 1855, that Four main lines were built from Luxembourg city to Bettembourg, Kleinbettingen, Wasserbilig and Ettelbrück in the late 1850s-early 60s and two smaller lines were built to transport the iron ore to the blast furnaces at Dommeldange:
One railway line received the name of the Dutch King and Grand Duke of Luxembourg: "Guillaume Luxembourg" (GL). Which was administered until 10 May 1871 by the Compagnie Francaise de l'Est. After this, the Prussians, having just won the Franco-Prussian War and subsequently having annexed the Alsace, transferred the French rights into a new Compagnie EL (Reichseisenbahn Elsass-Lothringen).
On 19 March 1869, a law created the Compagnie des chemins de fer Prince-Henri, the Lieutenant-Governor of Luxembourg. Further lines were built in the 1870s although the customers of the ironworks were losing interest in Luxembourgish cast iron due to its high phosphorus contents, it was too brittle and the Prince-Henri company went bankrupt.
In 1877, the government stepped in and in 1878 formed a new company, along with private investors, the “Société Luxembourgeoise des Minières et Chemins de Fer Prince Henri”. Its abbreviation remained “PH”. From 20 April 1880 the steel industry was reignited due to a new process.
1880: The first express train Luxembourg followed on 1 June 1881: The Kautenbach – Wiltz, line, A number of narrow gauge lines were built and further developments of the standard gauge network to include expansion to the Belgium border. On 8 August 1900, the new Pétange – Dippach – Luxembourg line opened. This was the point of PH's greatest expansion.
On 10 May 1940, German troops invaded Luxembourg and confiscated the rail lines for use by the occupying army. In November 1941, Luxembourg was officially annexed by Nazi Germany. The Reichsbahn took over the running of the railways; a part of the employees were dismissed, moved to Germany or imprisoned.
Liberation happened on the 10 September 1944, with military transports soon being joined by supplies of steel for European reconstruction.
The Société Nationale des Chemins de Fer Luxembourgeois (CFL) was founded on the 17th April 1946 and soon took over all the railways of Luxembourg. Electrification of Kleinbettingen, Bettembourg via Luxembourg City occurred in 1959.