Chattanooga Railroad Series: Belt Line (East Lake)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014 - by John Wilson

Much of the old Belt Line that travels through East Lake still looks like it is in plenty good enough shape for a locomotive to come barreling along with several rail cars in tow. But none come.

Starting at 34th Street, the tracks are firmly in place and there are a series of crossings still outfitted with elaborate crossing signals and lights.

At 34th is where the Belt Line once served the Richmond Spinning Mill. Later, it was the home of the Chris-Craft boat building operation.

A mesh of Belt Line tracks lead past the East Lake Academy. School buses that serve the school still stop faithfully at the many Belt Line crossings in East Lake, though no trains have passed by in many years.

Starting at 36th Street, the Belt Line curves down to 7th Avenue as it follows the outfield at Darwin Field. There are major crossing mechanisms as it goes by J.D. Helton Roofing and Leeco Steel. Spurs still lead toward the steel plant and there is a rail car in sight along with a pile of crossties up above the main line.

The Belt Line continues straight as 7th Avenue makes a sharp curve. It goes over another street crossing with elaborate markings. Nearby the main Belt Line is gated off at one plant.

The old line goes by the site of the original Ernest Holmes Wrecking operation on 43rd Street.

As Rossville Boulevard comes into sight, it makes a curve toward the north. A huge crossing bar is at  Rossville Boulevard. Then the line heads by the Brainerd Lumber Company to merge with the current Central of Georgia line. The Central of Georgia follows from this point on the original Belt Line route back to town.



Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ALVAREZ, MARCELINO P  207 LAWS AVE #A CHATTANOOGA, 37411  Age at Arrest: 45 years old Arresting Agency: Tenn Highway Patrol DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE --- ARNOLD, DERRICK  5191 CENTRAL AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37401  Age at Arrest: 27 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga DRIVING ON ... (click for more)

Bradley County Authorities Hold Active Shooter Drill

The Bradley County Sheriff’s Office, Cleveland Fire Department, Bradley County Fire and Rescue, Bradley County 911 Communications Center, and Bradley County Emergency Management Agency took part in an active shooter exercise early this morning at Bradley Central High School to evaluate tactics and technologies for responding to and containing rapidly escalating shooting incidents. ... (click for more)

A Tribute For My Brother – Sgt. Jonathan Gardner, U.S. Army

Seven years ago today, my family and I found out that my brother, Sgt. Jonathan D. Gardner, was seriously injured by a roadside bomb, (explosively formed penetrator - EFP), while on a mission in Kuwait. The EFP went through the bottom of his seat and put a softball size hole in his upper thigh. The doctors said that if the bomb had entered the Humvee an inch to the right, he ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

All of us who marvel at the sound of bagpipes at a funeral realize the majesty that people like piper Scottie Maclellan can lend to any “homecoming” and for years there has been a wonderful tale out of Nova Scotia that leads this week’s parade of The  Saturday  Funnies. Mind you, I do not write these stories, as many who have followed man’s laughter down through the ... (click for more)

Orange Overwhelms White, 34-7, In Tennessee Spring Game

KNOXVILLE – After almost a month of spring camp and four quarters of ones versus twos, one glaring question remains: how much will the fall arrival of graduate transfer Keller Chryst change the dynamic of the battle for starting quarterback?   While new Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt was calling for an electric atmosphere at Saturday’s Orange and White game, the ... (click for more)

Stoker, Tate Prevail In 50th Chickamauga Chase 15K

They couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day weather-wise for the oldest and longest running race on the Chattanooga Track Club’s schedule. Temperatures were cool, but not cold, and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.   Add to that the fact there was very little wind and you have perfect conditions for the 50 th Annual Chickamauga Chase. A lot has changed with this ... (click for more)