Chattanooga Railroad Series: Alton Park Extensions

Thursday, January 30, 2014

(Chattanooga in the 1890s had 10 railway outlets with 66 passenger trains arriving and departing daily. The town was criss-crossed with train tracks, including not only the main lines but the connecting Belt Line. It's not so often today that you get a glimpse of a train in Chattanooga, but many of the old tracks remain. Many Railroad Crossing signs and switches are still in place, but these days receive little or no use).

In the hey-day of the train in Chattanooga, Alton Park was served with, not one, but three rail lines.

The TAG Railway came through from St. Elmo, and there were also extensions from the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis Railroad on the west and the Central of Georgia on the east.

The NC&StL branched off at the Cravens Yards just past the curve around Moccasin Bend. The main line of the NC&StL only crossed Chattanooga Creek once, but skirted it several times. But it was necessary to build a trestle across the creek for the Alton Park extension.

A concrete trestle was built across St. Elmo Avenue, but the extension crossed South Broad Street at grade. An insignia of the NC&StL can still be seen on the side of the St. Elmo Avenue trestle.

Once across South Broad, the territory was within the city limits of Alton Park. It remained its own city with a mayor and city government until 1929. Alton Park voters first rejected annexation, but a second vote was in favor by 287 to 187 after it was promised that South Market Street would be extended to the community.  

The single track continued in a straight line just north of 33rd Street, first going across the old streetcar line to Lookout Mountain (later Williams Street). It passed under a concrete overpass at Alton Park Boulevard. A short distance beyond that it went under the line that was constructed after a railroad tunnel was built through the north end of Lookout Mountain.

Past Chandler Avenue, the extension veered toward a crossing of 38th Street at Central Avenue. It went beside Central and crossed Hooker Road (now Workman Road). From there it curved east and joined the Central of Georgia's extension just short of Wilson Road. 

A spur off the NC&StL extension crossed Central Avenue toward the main Alton Park industrial area.

The Central of Georgia constructed its extension near the old Card Lumber Company and Berry Lumber and Stove Company (Brainerd Lumber Company) off of Rossville Boulevard near Walthall Avenue.

It crossed the section of the current Workman Road that then was called Hamill Road and then went across a trestle over Chattanooga Creek.

The Central of Georgia extension crossed Wilson Road and then Central Avenue as it entered the main industrial part of Alton Park.

The Central of Georgia extension to Alton Park is still intact, but most of the tracks on the NC&StL extension have been taken up.

There is still a double set of traffic lights at the NC&StL extension crossing of South Broad Street, but motorists need not worry - there are no tracks on either side.

There are fragments of track past Chandler Avenue, then they are in good shape in the vicinity of the 38th Street crossing and beyond to Workman Road. There is no longer any sign of the tracks that went east to join the Central of Georgia extension near Wilson Road. 


 





Many Waldens Ridge Scenes Featured In Stokes Picture Book

A number of early views of Waldens Ridge are among the rarities found in the Stokes Photo Collection. There are many photos of the roads up the mountain showing streetcars, wagons and early autos. There are scenes at Rainbow Lake, Falling Water Falls, Signal Point and other scenic spots. Several photos are included of the Signal Mountain Hotel. The more than 700 photos ... (click for more)

Corker Urges U.S. And Other Nations To Accelerate Efforts To Stop Ebola Outbreak In West Africa

Senator Bob Corker issued the following statement on Tuesday, after speaking with U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Rajiv Shah about the U.S. response to Ebola in West Africa. “As we address this problem, the most important thing for us to do is to contain and stop Ebola in West Africa, and for that reason, I talked with Administrator Shah to receive ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Lost Its Most Popular Citizen - Luther Masingill

Chattanooga has lost its most popular citizen – Luther Masingill. Although we are saddened we cherish the memories.  All of us have a Luther story.  Mine is the first time I met Luther.  This was before TV and all of Chattanooga listened to Luther on the radio.  I was 12-years-old.  Some of my buddies and I had gone to the State Theater in downtown ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: An Election Day Fable

Every day I am peppered with emails that friends send to me from across the country so I am unsure of where the fable you are about to read originated. But with early voting for the November general election now in full swing, I think everyone who will -- or will not -- take part in freedom’s greatest privilege should read this story because I believe there is a great lesson contained ... (click for more)

Mihaescu, March Win Region 3-A/AA Cross Country Titles

The weather wasn't quite as nice as it was last week, but it was still sunny and warm on Tuesday afternoon for the Region 3-A/AA cross country championships, which were held on a flat course at Camp Jordan in East Ridge. Sequoyah senior Danielle March was the female winner as she toured the 5K course in 21 minutes, 46 seconds to win by almost a minute over KiAnna Queener, ... (click for more)

Ooltewah's Riley Hickman: 2-for-2 Wins At Cleveland And Talladega

The “Hustler” Riley Hickman of Ooltewah hunkered down this weekend and picked up a pair of wins in Dirt Track competition. Friday night the # R1 “Hickman Manufacturing, American Billett, Austin Trucking, Tucker Mobile Home Service, Allstar Graphics, VP Racing Fuels, RH Designs, Competition Racing Equipment, A-1 Towing, MRC” sponsored CVR / Vic Hill powered machine ... (click for more)