ACL/SAL ATLANTIC COAST LINE/SEABOARD AIR LINE IN AND AROUND CHARLESTON, SC

SCRS Jan 3, 2009

  1. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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  2. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    SCRS,

    I enjoyed your posts...I grew up in the Park Circle area in the 60-70s. The track from Downtown, through Chicora, up Spruill and past North Charleston ran right past my house. Growing up we had a southbound ACL/SCL (GP7/9s) than ran at 9AM'sh and a northbound at 5PM'sh everyday... We used to put rocks and coins on the tracks, jump the train at Durant and jump off at Braddock. This line runs all the way to Andrews and into NC. I've seen maps that show it in place in 1927. Would you (or anyone else) know when this track was laid out?
     
  3. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Was this on the former SAL? Andrews, SC was where the SAL's mainline crossed its line between Lanes, SC (Lanes is where a connection was made with the ACL main) and Georgetown. My 1999 map shows these intact, except for the line between Andrews and Lanes which came out in the '30s I believe. My map is nearly 20 years old, so more miles might be gone on these lines today..

    The SAL's main along the coast was built as the "EC" (East Carolina Division) in the 20s (I think) to provide a low grade freight route. Passenger trains stayed on the original route via Columbia with its difficult profile of grades and curves ill-suited for heavy freight. I'm uncertain what remains of the EC, but the large paper mill in Georgetown is still operating. Between Charleston and Savannah, the SAL main is long gone in favor of the ACL's line. I assume this was accomplished in the late 60s upon completion of the SCL merger.

    The SAL's history is a complex one, with acquisitions, reorganizations and lines built to stitch the system together.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2018
  4. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    HardCoaler,
    I dont know which laid the original line, I dont remember seeing it on the map... Like I mentioned, It was there in 1927...This is the line through N. Charleston, Naval Weapons Station, Crosses Cooper River at Pimilco, then Cordesville, Bethera, Jamestown.... Not the A-line through Goose Creek, Moncks Corner, Kingstree...FWIW, My Great Grandfather was Station Master at both Waycross and Folkston...
     
  5. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    CSXDixieLine,

    Since you grew up in Hanahan (NoChas for Me) the trestle that crossed Turkey Creek was the line that ran past my house. Do you happen to know when that track was laid? Ive seen maps that show it there in 1927...Cant find anything earlier than that...
     
  6. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I'm not who you asked, but my map shows the ACL main crossed at Turkey Creek at Hanahan, SC. That line was built by the Northeastern Railroad in 1856 and ran between Charleston and Florence. It was later absorbed by the ACL. The SAL's EC (built in 1918 between Charleston and Hamlet, NC) crossed Goose Creek about 2 Miles northeast of Hanahan.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
  7. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    Hardcoaler,
    The ACL line was indeed built in 1856 by NE RR...thats what I refer to as the A-line that runs through NChas, Hanahan, Goose Creek, Moncks Corner (where I live), Kingstree, etc...

    The SAL EC line built in 1918 is the one I grew up beside... That’s EXACTLY what I was looking for...As a young kid I remember the telegraph poles beside the track with glass insulators....I traced the track back into the Neck of Charleston on Google Maps.... Once again, Hardcoaler comes through...
     
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  8. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks! The SAL has such a fascinating history, with over a dozen lines not pulled together under one banner until 1900 and multiple segments built to stitch them all together. A missing portion of the mainline north of Columbia wasn't completed until 1895! Heck, the SAL didn't even reach steel center Birmingham, AL until the early 1900s.

    If you can find a copy, I highly recommend Seaboard Air Line Railway Album by Langley, Beckum and Tidwell, c. 1988. It's a softcover, horizontal-format book packed with great photos, the road's history and excellence throughout. Another to look for is Seaboard - The Route of Courteous Service by Griffin, c. 1999.
     
  9. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    Hardcoaler,

    I will look for that book...
     
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  10. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    CSXDL'

    Having grown up just barely a mile from there, maybe I can help... The current configuration occurred late 90s/early 2000s. That track runs right past the house I grew up on. There was a criss-cross with the gate and sign as you recall. The tracks have been pulled up south of that spot and don't reappear until in front of what used to be the Ben Tillman/George Legare housing project. DO you remember when the tracks crossed Spruill at The Navy Base, to Rivers Ave, then across Meeting street alongside BenTillman/George Legare, then between Pinehaven Shopping Center and Kmart? I can remember seeing cars sitting on the spur... Long Time ago...
     
  11. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    Im a dummy...I just saw where CSXDL passed away...
     
  12. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    No problem NCHS83, your recollections are fun to read, even though I'm not closely familiar with Charleston.

    Time does speed by. The suburban Chicago depot that I once boarded trains at has since been relocated and made into a restaurant, and it hardly seems that long ago.
     
  13. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    HC,
    Im glad they saved your depot (even if moved)... The one here in Moncks Corner is a community resource. Its rented for birthdays/receptions/etc... The one AMTRAK (N. charleston) serves was built in 50s and will soon be torn down for the new one under construction. Though not a particularly aesthetically pleasing building its still sad to see it torn down... The local paper ran a story the other week on how local communities are trying to save their depots...
     
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  14. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    The ACL did some neat station modernizations in the '50s and North Charleston's station was one of them, opening in 1956. I think the ACL also maintained Charleston Division offices there.

    I was upset when I learned that the classic 1950's modern ACL station at Yemassee, SC had been "renovated" to supposedly make it look like it once did. Someone should have recognized that the depot was architecturally meaningful and that it should be preserved and restored, not re-imaged in a bogus notion of what might have been.

    Here is how it looked until about 2010:

    [​IMG]

    and here is how it looks now, just like a Cracker Barrel restaurant. You can see that the new structure encases the old.

    [​IMG]

    [neither photo is mine]
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2018
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  15. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    HC

    Concur...I like the "Cracker Barrel" analogy...Thats exactly what the Yemassee depot looks like... Over the past several years the NoChas station has been neglected and it shows...I need to go down and see how the new depot is coming along... I want to take my granddaughter on a train to see her grandmother before the station is closed...Mostly so I can say she and I departed from the same station 40 plus years apart...
     
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  16. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    SCRS,

    I lived just a couple of miles up the tracks that ran along Spruill... Do you remember the "Dixie Diner"? My grandparents owned it from the 40s until the 90s... I too enjoyed watching the trains that ran on said line...Its all but abandoned now...
     
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  17. SCRS

    SCRS TrainBoard Member

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    29 December 2018
    Good morning all. It has been a long time since I entered a post here on the TrainBoard.

    I have now retired (my third time-prev USAF 20+ and Bi-Lo 10+) and now from Lockheed Martin (Greenville,SC) 26+ and I have no plans to send out any resumes or fill out any applications.

    I do get in more model railroading now, however other events still somewhat interfer.
    The SCRS 1/4 inch scale hi-rail has grown. I still operate the Atlantic Coast Line, Southern and Seaboard Air Line roads and still pre-order items for these roads from the MTH and Atlas catalogs.

    Here in the upstate of South Carolina, there are three train shows each year. These shows also contribute to my adding rolling stock, buildings and ect to the basement layout.

    Here is a link to a short video that one of my granddaughters made.
    Enjoy.

    Larry @ SCRS - rolling over to 82 in a few days.

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/tniSHy2zwjDZi9gbA
     
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  18. NCHS83

    NCHS83 TrainBoard Member

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    Hey Guys... While wandering around the Moncks Corner Depot the other day I noticed there were dates on the rails... Several said 1966...Is that possible???
     
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  19. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Oh definitely, depending on tonnage, placement, maintenance and metallurgy, rails can last a long time. Were these jointed rails or continuous welded rail?
     
  20. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    In 2014 KCS replaced 90# rail on the Gulfport, MS Branch that was rolled in 1921. It was 82 years old and still used daily.

    [​IMG]
     
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