C&O Railway Craig Valley Branch
Chesapeake & Ohio's Craig Valley Branch
by Thomas W. Dixon, Jr.
16-page softbound booklet telling the complete story of the Craig Valley Branch. This line ran 26 miles from the James River Subdivision connection at Eagle Mountain (now Eagle Rock), Va. It was completed in 1891, with a purpose of serving iron miles and furnaces during the early 1890s iron boom in western Virginia.
After the iron played out the branch existed for many decades mainly for extracting pulpwood and other forest and agricultural products. In the late 1940s it became noted as one of the last branches to have a mixed train.
Motive power in the later decades up to 1951 was one of C&O's F-11 class 4-6-0 Ten Wheelers. This engine is on exhibit at the B&O RR Museum in Baltimore today, as is the wooden combination car that it hauled for so many years. An ALCo S-2 diesel switcher handled the line's business between 1952 and its demise in 1961.
The branch was abandoned, sold to the Commonwealth of Virginia, and its right-of-way was converted to a state highway in 1961.
The booklet has maps, diagrams, and photos of the equipment, stations, etc