Birmingham-Anniston 1941-1945 and 1964-1965 : LUSENET : Southern Railway : One Thread

This question was sent to me via the CofGa Web site. I will forward any answers to the person who sent the question to me, as he did not authorize me to post his personal information.

Sincerely, Ron. Wright ----

Hi, Folks. I'm really not a rail hobbyist, though rail does enthuse me. I'm at a point in life where I'm now downsizing my material interests. But I have questions about the Southern Railway Crescent Route between Philadelphia and Birmingham and Anniston, 1941-1945 and 1964-1965. 1941-1945: (a) what were the stops between Birmingham and Anniston, and also Anniston and Charlotte, North Carolina, that the Crescent either stopped in or were stops for other area connecting lines that the Crescent passed through and didn't have to stop? (b) has the rail bed between Anniston and Charlotte been along the same course since 1941, or has it been substantially shifted? I ask this particularly because of the towns in Georgia up to Clemson, SC, that are visible in summer daylight hours; (c) what were the departure/arrivals times from Birmingham to Anniston to Philadelphia, and from Philadelphia to Anniston to Birmingham? Did the Crescent run once or twice daily, and did it run every day? ;(d) Between 1941 and 1945, was it sleeper restricted for military and government job workers only or could anyone get a sleeper? Or was it all coach straight through? 1964-1965: (a) what were the arrivals/ returning departures for Charlotte, North Carolina on the Philadelphia-Charlotte run? Because my Dad worked at a shell plant in Gadsden in World War 2, he and Mom travelled back and forth to Philadelphia via this route. I've done the same retracing their steps and I've wondered about these points since I've started to travel.

-- Ron. Wright (, May 01, 2003


I don't believe the Crescent traveled through Anniston, Al.The Crescent took a more southern route via Montgomery, Al.

-- C. R. Thompson (, January 08, 2004.

The Crescent ran boths ways.

The original Crescent routing from Atlanta to New Orleans was via Montgomery, West Point Route to Montgomery, L&N to New Orleans.

In later years Crescent ran via Birmingham using SR.

I think the change occurred before WWII but don't have a ref in front of me. Anyway, it was well before Amtrak.

Ron. Wright

-- Ron. Wright (, January 09, 2004.

The original Crescent,did not,as noted, run through Anniston. It instead went from ATL to NOL via Montgomery and Mobile. The train which did run via Anniston was The Southerner.It went from NY to ATL to NOL via Anniston, BHM and Meridian. There were other Southern trains through Anniston such as the Kansas City Florida Special though I think that is outside the range of your question.

In 1970 the Southerner and the Crescent were combined into one train,named "The Southern Crescent" retaining some features of the former trains. The route feature which was retained was the route of the Southerner, through Anniston. The Montgomery and Mobile run was still served, for awhile, by the Crescent's lesser companion train, the Piedmont Limited.

In 1979 this was taken over by Amtrak. At that time the name "Southern" was dropped and the train became known simply as the Crescent.

It was actually called The Crescent Limited when first put into operation in 1926. The Southerner was placed in service in 1941. Until 1970 they were the two streamlined kings of the road. The Crescent was streamlined in 1949(when the name "Limited" was dropped) adn the Southerner had been streamlined from its inception in 1941.

-- bill haithcoat (, May 26, 2004.

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