Abingdon Branch Freight Cars

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Fri May 22 22:08:44 EDT 2020

Let me tell you how lucky I was.  The grade southbound through Green Cove is 3 percent except for a short level stretch in front of the depot.  Above Green Cove there is a right-hand  horseshoe curve on that 3 percent on the way up to White Top.  I was riding with my Grandfather one fine day; the train consisted of the 382 and 429 on the head end, ten southern Railway hoppers loaded with rock for a highway project in NC, the 433 as pusher and then the passenger cars.  Standing in the open door of the ten or eleven, I don’t remember which, and looking across the horseshoe at the two engines on the head end, and hearing them, and listening to the 433 just ahead . . .   Well, I’ll remember it until I can’t remember anything else.  That rock in those Southern hoppers didn’t want to go up that mountain, but they went.  But it took all the guts the three Ms had to get them up there.

- Ed King

From: NW Mailing List 
Sent: Friday, May 22, 2020 4:27 PM
To: 'NW Mailing List' 
Subject: Abingdon Branch Freight Cars

Looking at photos of trains #201 and #202 on the Abingdon Branch in the mid-50’s, it seems like those trains mostly consisted of boxcars and gondolas with a few hoppers, a pulpwood car and occasional tank car. What industries were served by the N&W on that branchline in that time period ?  I am particularly interested in West Jefferson, NC.


Is there an official list of the industries served by that line?



Paul Mandelkern

Winter Park, FL


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