Roanoke Belt Line Right-of-Way Question

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at
Thu Oct 24 10:40:35 EDT 2019

Stephen, Do you have the date that Rorer (thx for sp correction) abandoned their R/W from today’s Tanglewood to west Roanoke?   John Garner


From: NW Mailing List [mailto:nw-mailing-list at] 
Sent: Wednesday, October 23, 2019 5:10 PM
To: NW Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at>
Subject: Re: Roanoke Belt Line Right-of-Way Question


John, you are correct. The Rorer line (and it’s Rorer, not Rohrer) cut across present day Brandon Avenue below Towers mall, approximately behind Wheelers Laundry. It ran towards Wasena along the river and crossed just to the right of today’s Wasena Bridge. 


The land transfers are a last bit of research I have yet to do. Abram is raises a good point, in that the Rorer land would have been mostly abandoned after the successor iron company moved its ore washing operations closer to the mine, and built a transfer platform directly at the Winston Salem track near present-day Tanglewood Mall. However, I still haven’t done the vital courthouse research on all the land transfers to see what that story looks like. 



I’m also not at my files, so I can’t recall when the beltline was constructed, but I seem to recall it was before the narrow gauge track was abandoned. There was a necessary diamond which we still haven’t found a drawing for, and it would be located along the River between Brandon Avenue and the ice house which is now condominiums. 


Stephen Warren 



On Wed, Oct 23, 2019 at 3:15 PM NW Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at <mailto:nw-mailing-list at> > wrote:

Mr. Stephen Warren may be the authority on this matter but . . .


The Rohrer Iron Co right-of-way is simultaneous with the Roanoke Belt Line only form a point approximately where Murray Run joins the Roanoke River (street-wise see Brandon Ave. and 23rd St SW) to Wasena. That cuts your distance in question to about half.


John Garner


From: NW Mailing List [mailto:nw-mailing-list at <mailto:nw-mailing-list at> ] 
Sent: Wednesday, October 23, 2019 12:37 PM
To: N&W Mailing List <nw-mailing-list at <mailto:nw-mailing-list at> >
Subject: Roanoke Belt Line Right-of-Way Question


A thought just occurred to me...


Might the N&W, in constructing its Roanoke Belt Line, have acquired by purchase, from the surviving interests of the Rorer Iron Company, the Rorer right-of-way between Franklin Road and Wasena, in Roanoke?


That is a distance of approximately 4600 feet, depending on where one fixes the end points.


Given the topography, there is not much question that the Roanoke Belt Line is situated virtually smack-dab on top of the old Rorer right-of-way between these points.  The question is, how and from whom did the N&W acquire the land?


It would be interesting to see the dates of purchase for the various real estate parcels on the Roanoke Belt Line, and to see if they were acquired by purchase in fee, or by condemnation.  Given that the N&W owned and controlled everything in Roanoke, my guess is that the parcels were acquired by purchase without litigation.


-- abram burnett

Turnips "Of Interest" to the Intelligence Community

                  Sent to You from my Telegraph Key
Successor to the MAGNETIC TELEGRAPH LINE of 1844

NW-Mailing-List at <mailto:NW-Mailing-List at> 
To change your subscription go to
Browse the NW-Mailing-List archives at

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the NW-Mailing-List mailing list