V&T and Southside RR in Lynchburg

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Sun Jul 2 16:28:29 EDT 2017

Today's research has been in W. Asbury Christian's book, Lynchburg and  Its 
People, 1900. His research was primarily based on the several newspapers  
published in Lynchburg up until 1900. 
He states that the first Southside RR train arrived in Lynchburg at 2:30 pm 
 on November 2, 1860 at the railroad's depot on Percival's Island in the 
James  River, "for this was its entrance into the city. It was not allowed to 
connect  with the Virginia & Tennessee road for all cars had to break bulk 
here and  the freight (and passengers) had to be hauled by wagons over a 
bridge near  Hurt's Mill and thence.... to the other depot [V&T]."  I believe 
the  low dam of Hurt's Mill is still in place, opposite the RockTen-Mead paper 
mill  and the distance of the wagon trip was about a mile and a quarter.
The Southside and the V&T were both unutilized heavily  and  damaged 
likewise during the Civil War. 
There is no mention of the two lines being connected until 1866 when a  
military tribunal ruled against the  consolidation the two  railroads after 
hearing the opinions of the citizens at a hearing. Lynchburg and  Virginia were 
under military rule as part of Reconstruction until 1870. In  June 1870 the 
V&T and the Southside were consolidated and at which time  Christian 
suggests  a bridge was built from the west end of Percival's  Island to the shore 
and tracks laid joining the two roads. It is my opinion that  the gap could 
not have been more than 150 yards. 
Aubrey Wiley
"Our stories give our lives  meaning." Rudyard Kipling, 1928
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