A-Line- Pinners Point to Rocky Mount

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Does anyone know when the ACL route from Pinners Point in Portsmouth, VA to Rocky Mount, NC was first constructed?

-- Andrew Callo (acallo@dcf.net), May 27, 2000


J611 is right about the brick depot in Ahoskie being the replacement of the original structure which stood directly across the tracks from the present depot. As a former resident of Ahoskie I don't ever remember the original depot burning down. I thought it was torn down. I do know that the original "Ahoskie" station sign from the old depot is on the brick replacement depot.

-- Mike Perry (Mariner818@aol.com), October 03, 2000.

You're right about the freight station in Suffolk, right on Washington St.. I always forget about it. It is currently Ray's Autobody repair shop. The owner is a nice guy, and let me ramble through the structure last summer looking around. All RR items are long since gone. The brick structure at Ahoskie was a replacement structure for the wooden depot that once stood there, and I believe, burned down. The semaphore is from the original structure. I have a news clipping here somewhere about the original building.

-- Russell Underwood (Jay611@home.com), May 31, 2000.

Russell, your answer was so thorough that I hesitate to add this, but I think there is in addition to the Driver station a more modern ACL station at Washinton St in Suffolk that is now a auto parts store or repair shop. Also the Ahoskie brick station is there and the Roduco wooden station has been moved but is close by. The segment between Kelford and Ahoskie should see more traffic from a new steel plant close to old Tunis.

-- Tommy Arthur (arthurtrans@compuserve.com), May 31, 2000.

Very little of this line remains in Virginia today. There's a couple of miles of track still in use by CSX in the downtown Suffolk, Va. area, used to access an industrial park and a railcar repair facility, on the South side of town. CSX gains access to this line via a connection with the old SAL, along US-58. You'd never guess that this stretch of track was once a proud mainline by looking at it. The bridge across US-58 allows a chemical plant to receive infrequent service, but the line from here to Pinner's Pt. is gone. The only depot still standing(bearly!) that I know of is the Driver, Va. station, which has been heavily modified for use as a feed store. There are two ex-GB&W 40' plug door boxcars on the south side of the structure, also used for storage. The ACL interlocking with the former Atlantic & Danville Rwy at Boone is now under the southbound lanes of Interstate I-664. The southbound lanes occupy the site of the tower and the actual diamond. This was the A&D's route into Pinners Pt. via trackage rights, and the start of the West Norfolk Branch. The A&D line later became the NF&D Rwy (N&W owned, and is now controlled by the Commonwealth Rwy. Much of the RofW is still highly visible, but is quickly disappearing. Houses and shopping centers now occupy much of the RofW in the Boone area.

Russell Underwood

-- Russell Underwood (Jay611@home.com), May 27, 2000.

The first portion of the ACL's Pinners Point/Portsmouth to Rocky Mount Branch to open was Rocky Mount to Tarboro built by the Wilmington & Weldon RR in 1860. The first dozen miles, or so, out of Pinners Point was opened by the Western Branch RR in 1888. The WBRR was sold the same year to the Chowan & Southern RR which became, two years later, the Norfolk & Carolina RR. The N&CRR opened, later in 1890, the remaining portion of the line from Pinners Point to Tarboro. Both the W&W and N&C became part of the ACL in 1900.

-- Tom Underwood (tlunder@attglobal.net), May 27, 2000.

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