A&D towers and signals

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Does anyone have any information (style, size, dates of operation) on any towers that the SRR maintained on the A&D prior to 1949? I know there were towers at Boone and Wakefield, but what about Sholders Hill, Suffolk, Emporia or La Crosse? Also what type of signals did SRR use at its towers? I assume thyey were semaphores, but would they have been 3 or 2 light, upper or lower quadrant, and did they use green or clear?

-- Bill Nelson (gnspouselaw@erols.com), December 22, 2001


Waverly was on the A&D narrow gauge line fom Emporia to Claremont, not Wakefield. Wakefield was on the Surry Sussex & Southampton, another narrow gauge line, that was primarily a logging road for the Surry Lumber Co.. While the tower at Waverly is long gone, The A&D freight depot still stands, as do five other A&D/SOU narrow gauge depots.

I have a copy of the wiring schematic for the tower at Boone, VA, where the A&D crossed the ACL Portsmouth-Rocky Mount line, and had trackage rights into Pinners Point yards. The tower was a two story wooden framed structure.

The tower in Suffolk was at the N&W crossing with the A&D. The ACL and VGN (ex-NS Rwy) also crossed here within a couple of hundred feet or so.

To my knowledge, there was never a tower at Shoulders Hill, or at LaCrosse. There was an interchange at LaCrosse with the SAL, and it was here that many of the SAL units leased to the A&D came on line.

The ACL had a single story brick interlocking "tower" at Emporia until sometime in the 80's, when I noticed it was gone. Never got a photo of it unfortunately...

Russell Underwood

-- Russell Underwood (Jay611@home.com), December 22, 2001.

Amazingly, two semaphore signals (single blade type) still stand along the A&D (NS) at Emporia. (Long out of service.) Assume that they protected the ACL crossing, as they are each about 200-300 yds east and west of the diamond, respectively. Saw them earlier this month. Anyone have any other ideas as to what these semaphores were for? Russell? Greg Hodges

-- Greg Hodges (ghodges@smpsfa.com), December 25, 2001.

Greg, Your assumptions are correct. The indications are permanent, and were designed to help protect the A&D/ACL diamond at Emporia. I believe I have a file here on the electrical hook-ups for the signals at Emporia, on both the A&D and ACL.

-- Russell Underwood (Jay611@home.com), December 26, 2001.

My apologies to Mrs. Mahone, Sir Walter Scott and the citizens of Southside Virginia for typing Wakefield instead of Waverly. I was looking at N&W information at the time. It appears that the A&D line had at least some lower quadrant semaphores. I recall that the Washington Division main had upper quadrant semaphores at one time. Did signals vary between divisions or was there some other reason for this difference?

-- Bill Nelson (gnspouselaw@erols.com), January 03, 2002.

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