Alabama Central Railroad

Standard Gauge

Headquarters: Jasper, AL

Years of Operation: 1913-1948

Predecessor Roads:

Successor Roads: none

Miles Operated: Jasper to Manchester- 6.665 miles

Locomotives Owned: 

Equipment

6/30/1917: Locomotives: 1. Cars: 1 passenger, 1 freight.

1928: Locomotives: 2. Cars: None.

 

Click Map for Larger Version

HISTORY by Gil Hoffman:

The Alabama Central Railroad was incorporated in Alabama on May 19, 1906, for the purpose of building and operating al line of railroad from Tuscaloosa, AL to Decatur, AL. The date of organization was May 19, 1906. Authorized capital stock was $100,000 of which $65,000 was issued to Enos M. Barton in part payment for construction costs of the road. 

The line extended from Jasper to Manchester, 6.665 miles. At Jasper, it connected with the Frisco, the Illinois Central and the Northern Alabama Railway. The company had trackage rights over about 6.40 miles of railroad belonging to the Manchester Saw Mills between Manchester and Sunlight. 

The line was built to transport lumber from the mill of E. M. Barton at Manchester to Jasper for shipment.  Construction began in 1906 and the road between Manchester and Jasper was placed in operation about August 1, 1907. The company was controlled by E. M. Barton through ownership of the entire capital stock. Costs of construction amounted to a little over $100,000. The difference between the cost and the par value of the stock represented advances made by E. M. Barton. The country traversed was rough and broken. The principal industry was logging and lumber manufacture

 In 1912 Barton sold his timberlands and sawmill to the Manchester Saw Mills, which proceeded to build a logging railroad from Manchester in a northeasterly direction to Sunlight, approximately 6.3 miles. On April 10, 1915, the Alabama Central Railroad entered into a contract with the Manchester Saw Mills to operate one train a day over the line to Sunlight. Operation over this line began on July 1, 1915. On January 15, 1926, the Manchester Saw Mills notified the AC that it had finished cutting and hauling logs over this line and was about to take up the railroad from Manchester to Sunlight.

 In 1921 the Manchester Coal Company built a line from Manchester northwesterly to its mine, about 2.25 miles. The Alabama Central operated trains over this line from the date of its construction.

 Strip coal mining was begun at Sunlight in 1915. In 1921 the mine was purchased by the I. O. Drewry Company. This operation continued and by 1927 the company had also commenced underground mining. In May 1926 Drewry purchased the railroad belonging to the Manchester Saw Mills extending from Manchester to Sunlight for $7,000. Rail in this line was leased from the Illinois Central

 

On January 15, 1927, the Alabama Central Railroad applied to the ICC for permission to abandon its railroad from Jasper to Manchester, to abandon operation of the railroad owned by the I. O. Drewry Company from Manchester to Sunlight, and to abandon operation of the railroad owned by the Manchester Coal Company from Manchester to its mine. The AC stated to the ICC that it had neither the funds nor the credit to buy and rehabilitate the line from Manchester to Sunlight. About $25,000 would be required to rehabilitate this line. With the closing of the Manchester Saw Mills, the railroad stated that it could not possibly operate at a profit over its own line from Jasper to Manchester. Even though the coal traffic would continue and increase, the railroad would still not be able to operate at a profit. Only during 1916 and 1917 did the AC operate at a profit. On January 29, 1927, the ICC granted permission for abandonment of operations over the lines owned by the Manchester Saw Mills and the Manchester Coal Company, The certificate was issued on the condition that the AC sell its railroad between Jasper and Manchester within 30 days to anyone who would continue operation for fair salvage value. The Alabama Central Railroad was sold to the I. O. Drewry Company, with I. O. Drewry becoming president and general manager.

 The Alabama Central Railroad continued operation of its own line from Jasper to Manchester, and the line from Manchester to Sunlight under lease. In 1930, the Alabama Central RR purchased the Manchester-Sunlight line without ICC permission. Train service ceased on the Manchester-Sunlight line in March 1939, when traffic dried up. The Alabama Central applied to the ICC on June 28, 1940, for permission to abandon the Manchester-Sunlight line and was granted permission on July 19, 1940. 

The ICC granted permission to abandon the remaining Jasper to Manchester line on August 31, 1960, with all operations ceasing on May 28, 1961.

  

REFERENCES 

1.  ”Alabama Central Railroad Company,” Valuation Docket No. 397, Interstate Commerce Commission Reports, Vol. 97, p. 761-72.

2.   ”Abandonment of Line by Alabama Central,” Finance Docket No. 5520, Interstate Commerce Commission Reports, Vol. 117, p. 643-9.

3.  ”Alabama Central Railroad Company Abandonment,” Finance Docket No. 12911, Interstate Commerce Commission Reports, Vol. 240, p. 531-2.

 

Alabama Central 28 at Merigold, Alabama on November 30, 1955. This Alco 2-8-0 was bought from the Oneida & Western in Tennessee in 1954 after that road was abandoned.

Alabama Central 810 at Jasper on May 11, 1950. This locomotive was bought from the Frisco about 1942.

Alabama Central 29 and caboose. The 2-8-0 was also bought from the Oneida & Western in 1954.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ROSTER by Gil Hoffman:

 

 

Road No.

 

Type

 

Builder

 

C.N.

 

Date

 

Cyls.

 

Dri. Dia.

 

Engine

Wt.

 

Previous Ownership

 

Disposition

 

1

 

0-4-0T

 

A/Dickson

 

41754

 

1/1907

 

14x22

 

44

 

60000

 

Built for stock. Sold to:

Alabama Central R.R. #1

 

Southern Iron & Equipment Co. #1005

Landis Tool Co., Waynesboro, PA,

on 2/12/1916.

 

2

 

2-6-2

 

Baldwin

 

41513

 

6/1914

 

16x24

 

46

 

110000

 

New. Cost $9,395.

Baldwin class 10-26¼ D 129

 

Southern Iron & Equipment Co. #2351

Peavy-Wilson Lumber Co. #6, Holopaw, FL,

in 1934.

Scrapped ca. 1951.

 

6

 

4-6-0

 

Rogers

 

2882

 

1/1882

 

18x24

 

54

 

89050

 

Nashville, Chattanooga & St. Louis Ry. #6

Built 60" gauge.

Changed to standard gauge in 1886.

Southern Iron & Equipment Co. #1087

Alabama Central R.R. #6, on 8/4/1917.

 

Birmingham Rail & Locomotive Co.

W. G. Ragley Lumber Co., Fullerton, LA,

on 3/26/1918.

 

33

 

2-8-0

 

A/Brooks

 

41126

 

6/1906

 

16x20

 

37

 

95000

 

Colorado & Northwestern #33, Boulder, CO

Built 36" gauge.

Denver, Boulder & Western #33, Boulder, CO, on 3/29/1909.

Morse Brothers Machinery Co., Denver, CO (dealer), in 9/1919.

Kentwood, Greensburg & Southwestern #33, Kentwood, LA, in 6/1920.

Natchez, Columbia & Mobile #33, Norfield, MS, ca. 1921.

Changed to standard gauge in NC&M Shops.

Birmingham Rail & Locomotive Co. #1630, on 4/17/1926.

Alabama Central R.R. #33, on 2/28/1928.

 

Southern Iron & Equipment Co. #2352.

 

34

 

4-6-0

 

Baldwin

 

52405

 

10/1919

 

18x24

 

56

 

126500

 

Aberdeen & Rockfish #11, Aberdeen, NC

Re. #25.

Southern Iron & Equipment Co. #2311,

by 11/1930.

Alabama Central R.R. #34, on ?

Baldwin class 10-30 D 668

 

 

 

810

 

2-8-0

 

Dickson

 

1165

 

9/1900

 

21x28

 

57

 

158000

 

St. Louis San Francisco Ry. #510

Re. #810 in 1901.

Alabama Central R.R. #810, ca. 1942.

 

Out of service 1950. Scrapped

 

698

 

4-6-0

 

A/Brooks

 

39925

 

6/1906

 

21x28

 

63

 

197900

 

St. Louis San Francisco Ry. #698

Alabama Central R.R. #698, in 1950.

 

Out of service 1955. Scrapped

 

28

 

2-8-0

 

A/Pitts.

 

27121

 

7/1903

 

21x30

 

50

 

192000

 

Pittsburgh & Lake Erie R.R. #182

Re. #9352 in 1907.

Oneida & Western #28, Oneida, TN, on 8/20/1939.

Alabama Central R.R. #28, in 1954.

 

Scrapped 12/1961.

 

29

 

2-8-0

 

A/Rich.

 

65287

 

9/1923

 

23x28

 

53

 

208000

 

Birmingham Southern 2nd #35,

Fairfield, AL.

Birmingham Rail & Locomotive Co.

Chattahoochee Valley Ry. #35,

West Point, GA, on 8/11/1939.

Oneida & Western #29, Oneida, TN, in 1947.

Alabama Central R.R. #29, in 1954.

 

Jasper AL Jaycees, in 8/1961 (for display).

Alabama Mining Museum, Dora, AL

(on display).

 

 

 

 

 

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