curve in ACL Fayetteville(NC) Sub at Ivanhoe, NC : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

On the old ACL (former Cape Fear & Yadkin Valley) line from Wilmington, NC to Sanford, NC a "strange" curve existed on this line just west of Ivanhoe, NC, which was maybe 20 plus miles west of the Wilmington, NC area. The line was heading west, then took an abrupt turn to the left, ran straight for probably no more than an eighth of a mile or so, then took an abrupt right turn heading west again. This seemed to have happened where the line crossed the South River. Maybe the reason was due to a better river crossing location or some other reason. It just appears that the line did this for no apparent reason, which I'm certain is not the case. Does anyone know for sure why? Just curious. David Smith

-- david r. smith, jr (, November 03, 1999


Hi David, In general civil engineering projects, it is common to cross rivers, railroads, and roads as close to 90 degrees as possible. This reduces the skew angle and reduces the bridge length required. It is done today to save money. However, in the old days it was often not possible to have a long span bridge, due mainly to a lack of crane to place long beams into position. That may have been the case at Ivanhoe? I have great memories of canoe trips down the Black River there. Best wishes, Marc

-- Marc L. Hamel (, November 05, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ