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Alabama railroads of the past collection

 Collection
Identifier: W-0042

Scope and Contents

This collection includes stock certificates, shipping receipts, and correspondence related to the operation and history of seven railroads: the Mobile and Alabama Grand Trunk Railroad Company, the Alabama and Mississippi Rivers Railroad, the Mobile and Girard Railroad Company, the Montgomery Southern Railway, the Tennessee and Alabama Railroad, the Atlanta and West Point Railroad, and the Montgomery Traction Company. Correspondence, certificates, and receipts produced by the railroad companies are dated between 1855 and 1911. In addition, the collection includes correspondence written in 1945 between archivist Peter Brannon and James M. Glenn related to the history of the Mobile and Girard Railroad Company.

Dates

  • 1855-1945

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Due to the nature of certain archival formats, including digital and audio-visual materials, access to certain materials may require additional advance notice.

Biographical / Historical

This collection contains materials related to several railroads, primarily the Mobile and Alabama Grand Trunk Railroad Company, the Alabama & Mississippi Rivers Railroad, the Mobile & Girard Railroad Company, and the Atlanta & West Point Railroad.

The Mobile & Alabama Grand Trunk Railroad Company was chartered in February 1866 to build a railroad stretching north from Mobile that would connect with major railroads already existing along the route. By 1872, the company had laid only sixty miles of the proposed 270 miles of track. The company was foreclosed and sold in May 1883.

The Alabama & Mississippi Rivers Railroad Company was incorporated in February 1850 to lay rails from Cahawba to Uniontown. The company fell into financial hardship after several of its depots were destroyed during the Civil War and the value of the company's Confederate bonds plummeted. In 1872, the company was purchased by a group of bondholders and renamed the Alabama Central Railroad Company. The company became a part of the East Tennessee, Virginia, & Georgia Railroad in 1882.

The Mobile & Girard Railroad Company was founded in January 1845 by Samuel G. Ingersoll and John Goodwin. According to its charter, the first Girard Railroad Company was permitted to lay seven miles of track near Girard in Russell County to transfer equipment to and from Ingersoll's sawmill. A second company, also called the Girard Railroad Company, was established in 1846. This company was authorized to build lines between Girard and Mobile Bay or connect the line to a railroad between Montgomery and West Point. The railroad continued to grow, uniting with the Eufaula & Mobile Railroad Company in 1849 and further expanding into Eufaula, Montgomery, and Mobile. In 1854, the company's name was changed to the Mobile & Girard Railroad Company. In June 1886, the company was leased to the Central Railroad & Banking Company of Georgia, and the railways were managed by the Central of Georgia Railway Company.

Chartered in 1847, the Atlanta & LaGrange Railroad was renamed the Atlanta and West Point Railroad in 1857. The rail line stretched eighty miles from East Point, near Atlanta, to West Point and LaGrange. The Georgia railway company was operated by the same managers as the Western Railway of Alabama. In 1903, the two railway companies combined, operating the West Point Route together. The Atlanta & West Point Railroad became a part of the Seaboard System Railroad in 1983.

Sources: "Atlanta and West Point Railroad," RailGa.com, http://railga.com/atlwp.html. Owen, Thomas McAdory and Marie Bankhead Owen. History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography.

Extent

0.1 Linear Feet

Language of Materials

English

Overview

Stock certificates, shipping receipts, and correspondence related to the operation and history of seven Alabama railroads: the Mobile & Alabama Grand Trunk Railroad Company, the Alabama & Mississippi Rivers Railroad, the Mobile & Girard Railroad Company, the Montgomery Southern Railway, the Tennessee & Alabama Railroad, the Atlanta & West Point Railroad, and the Montgomery Traction Company.

Physical Location

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama

Provenance

Gift of A. S. Williams III, 2010

Related Materials

There is more information on railroads in general, and Alabama railroads in particular, in the A. S. Williams III Americana Collection and in the W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library. See staff for assistance.

Processed by

Haley Aaron and Martha Bace, 2013

Source

Creator

Title
Guide to the Alabama railroads of the past collection
Status
Completed
Date
October 2013
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Contact:
Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266
205.348.0500