ATHENS, Ga. – Once the Gainesville Midland assumed control of the Gainesville, Jefferson and Southern Railroad in 1904, it set about converting the line to standard gauge and extending the line to Athens. In 1904, the railroad extended from Gainesville, Ga., to Social Circle, Ga., and Jefferson, Ga. By September 1905, nearly all the land needed for the railroad’s right-of-way was secured. However, “three or four” landowners were “holding out against the representatives of the committee and they are simply blocking the way of the committee in its work to secure the right of way,” the Weekly Banner newspaper reported. “The
ATHENS, Ga. – The Athens Terminal Co. was incorporated on Oct. 4, 1906, as a commercial steam railroad company jointly owned by the Gainesville Midland Railway and Seaboard Air Line. The two-mile-long railroad was chartered to run “from Broad street in the city of Athens along Foundry street to a connection with the tracks of the Seaboard Air Line Railway,” according to a petition the Weekly Banner newspaper printed in September 1906. Spur tracks were to be constructed as well. In January 1906, the Gainesville and Athens Construction Co. purchased three blocks of property along Foundry Street – stretching from
Thursday, Nov. 1, 1906, was a momentous day for the city of Athens, Ga. The first Gainesville Midland train pulled into town. “Here’s to the Gainesville Midland; may it live and prosper,” the Weekly Banner newspaper heralded. Roughly two months earlier, the first standard gauge train arrived in nearby Jefferson, Ga. At the time, the Gainesville Midland only connected Gainesville, Ga., with Social Circle, Ga. (via Winder, Ga.) and Jefferson, Ga. Construction on the line to Athens was delayed as the railroad awaited the rails to be laid. “Just now the trains will necessarily be mixed trains and the schedule
CONYERS – So many towns across Georgia owe their existence to the railroad. While trains still operate in a number of those cities, railroads are a distant memory in others. But a handful of cities in Georgia have a memorial dedicated to the role railroads played. Here is a brief overview of steam locomotives on public display throughout Metro Atlanta. Winder: Gainesville Midland 208 Gainesville Midland No. 208 was built by Pennsylvania-based Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1930. The decapod – as the locomotive is known because of its 10 drive wheels – originally operated as No. 530 on the Seaboard
WINDER, Ga. – The small town of about 10,000 owes a lot to the railroad. Its name, for starters. In 1893, the town of Jug Tavern, as Winder was once known, changed its name to Winder to honor John H. Winder, a general manager with Seaboard Air Line. The town’s railroad past is on display next to its historic depot on Porter Street: Gainesville Midland No. 208. Built by Pennsylvania-based Baldwin Locomotive Works in 1930, the decapod – as the locomotive is known because of its 10 drive wheels – originally operated as No. 530 on the Seaboard Air Line.