ACL murals in Florence. SC : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

Some time ago, I photographed two murals on store building exteriors in downtown Florence, SC. They were of ACL passenger trains; One was a steam locomotive pulling heavyweights and the other was the Champion. Does anyone happen to know the name or anything else about the muralist, or the history of these murals?

-- Jim Roquemore (, September 16, 2000


Both murals are intact and in fairly good condition. They are located on brick buildings at the corner of Evans and Irby Streets in downtown Florence. The first mural is of ACL K-15 ten-wheeler #1031 pulling a passenger train of ACL heavyweights. The mural was painted in 1992 by an artist named Elvis Hatchell. 1031 had been donated by ACL to the City of Florence in the late 1950s and it sat on display at the Florence yard until it almost fell apart and rusted away. Interested parties managed to arrange to have the engine donated to the N.C. Transportation Museum at Spencer, where it has been cosmetically restored. The second mural, also by Elvis Hatchell, was painted in 1994. It shows #501 in purple and lettered for the Champion, pulling a string of lightweights. Unfortunately, the unit has four-wheel trucks. There is a bronze plaque on the 501 mural stating that the murals are dedicated to John Fred "Daddy" Pope, John Fred Chasteen and all retired railroad employees and their families, by the Pee Dee Chapter, NRHS. Not sure, but I believe the chapter paid for both murals. I don't know anything more about the artist. If you want more information, email me, or call Howard Waddell in Florence.

-- Sandy Bridges (, September 18, 2000.

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