Nancy Hanks : LUSENET : Southern Railway : One Thread

Can you tell me what happened to the "Nancy Hanks" that ran, I think, from Savannah to Macon, Griffin, Atlanta, and Chattanooga? This would have been in the 1950s. I am also looking for pictures. Thanks, EDDIE

-- Edward Jordan Lanham (, October 07, 2003


The "Nancy Hanks" ran between Savannah and Atlanta from 1947 until the start of Amtrak in May 1971. The Central of Georgia passenger diesels were soon retired by Southern. The Nancy's cars went into the Southern fleet for a while. The domes ended up on the "Southern Crescent" and the rest of the train found itself in the steam excursion business for many years. As for pictures, check out the CofGmodeler group at Yahoo - There are lots of pictures on the PHOTOS and FILES pages of that website.

-- Tom Alderman (, October 08, 2003.

The Nancy Hanks was actually the Nancy Hanks II. Like the Man O' War it was a Central of Georgia train that ran entirely in Georgia. The Hanks died with the start of Amtrak.

Southern Railway refused to join Amtrak, preferring to run the Southern Cresent as a first class train. Southern did elect to have its Central of Georgia subsidiary join Amtrak. Amtrak didn't want the Hanks, but wanted the Southern Cresent route and excellent rolling stock. I was told Amtrak took Southern to court but lost. Of special note, is that Southern did allow two Amtrak coaches to be carried on the Southern Cresent, which was an extremely clean train. The Amtrak, earning the name "Amtrash", coaches were invaribly filthy to the extreme and subject to electrical and mechanical shortcomings. In Atlanta's Peachtree station I personally witnessed Southern Railway porters guiding passengers with flashlights thru the "filthy government cars."

Back to the Hanks. The Hanks left Savannah at 7 a.m., to arrive in Atlanta Terminal Station at 1 p.m. just across the street from the huge downtown Rich's department store. The Hanks departed Atlanta at 6 p.m. arriving in Savannah at 11:59 p.m. Southern Railway made the final run first class by pulling it with steam from Atlanta to Macon, the light pacific #750 that Southern used extensively in its steam excursions.

Southern ran two different ex-Wabash domes on the Hanks, which were later run on the Southern Cresent between Atlanta and New Orleans. For pictures of the domes see the following website, focus on WAB 1602 the parlor car and WAB 203 became Southern 0613, the dome coach.

-- Jim Dempsey (, December 28, 2003.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ