SAL passenger trains moves at Atlanta Terminal Station : LUSENET : ACL and SAL Railroads Historical Society : One Thread

How did SAL (and Southern, for that matter) passenger trains coming in from the Carolinas (like the Silver Comet) get oriented properly when arriving or departing Terminal station so as to be pointed in the right direct to proceed westbound? As-is coming in from the Carolinas, they would have been nosed in pointed South at Terminal Station, and not propoerly oriented to depart North/West.

It would appear a long backup move from the Howell junction area would have been required, or either a wye-turn and back-in adjacent to Union station? Or was it something else?

Tom Randall Kennesaw, GA

-- Tom Randall (, December 21, 2001


Miami,Tampa, St.Pete,Jax,Norfolk, maybe Birmingham

-- Joseph Oates (, December 24, 2001.

SAL was noted for its back up moves-Richmond after it moved to Broad Street Station, Savannah prior to 1962, Jacksonville and Atlanta. Can anyone think of any others?

-- Michael W. Savchak (, December 24, 2001.

The Southern coupled a switch engine on the rear of the train at Howell and pull the train to the station. I don't specifically recall seeing the Silver Comet make the same move but I do believe they backed into the station from Howells. I'll do a little more research on the subject if you need a more definative answer.

-- Ron Dettmer (, December 24, 2001.

When I was watching trains there ca. 1966, SAL trains had to make backup moves from Howell Tower, where the downtown lead branched from the main, to Terminal Station, a couple of miles or so. Some trains, including the Silver Comet, backed in and headed out of the station. Others, at least one local I recall seeing, headed in and backed out. I recall seeing a GP7 pulling out a train backward at one point, but this practice seemed to end around 1966 and trains backed under their own power afterward. Perhaps others can confirm or fill in more details.

-- Larry Goolsby (, December 21, 2001.

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