Atlantic Coast Line Railroad - History - Early History

Early History

The earliest predecessor of the ACL was the Petersburg Railroad between Petersburg, Virginia and a point near Weldon, North Carolina, founded in 1830. A route between Richmond, Virginia and Petersburg was built by the Richmond & Petersburg Railroad, which was founded in 1836. In 1840 the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad, at the time known as the Wilmington and Raleigh and renamed in 1855, completed a route between Weldon and Wilmington, North Carolina. From Wilmington, the Wilmington and Manchester Railroad began operations in 1853 to Florence, South Carolina, where the Northeastern Railroad operated to Charleston, South Carolina. In 1871, the W&W and the W&M (renamed the Wilmington, Columbia & Augusta) began using the Atlantic Coast Line name to advertise the two lines. An investor from Baltimore, William T. Walters, gained control of these separate railroads after the Civil War, and operated them as a network of independent companies. In 1897–98, most of the South Carolina lines in Walters' system were consolidated under the name of the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company of South Carolina. In 1898, as the companies moved towards combining themselves into a single system, the lines in Virginia were combined into the new Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company of Virginia, and the lines in North Carolina underwent a similar process in 1899, becoming the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company of North Carolina. In 1899 or 1900, due to a regulatory climate in Virginia that was better suited to the company than that in other states, the ACL of Virginia took control of the other lines and subsequently shortened its name to the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company.

Read more about this topic:  Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, History

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