Brunswick to Nicholls

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Note: Some of this information was drawn from the book Railroad Abandonments in Georgia, by Hugh M. Comer.

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A view of the Buffalo Creek trestle where a B&B train supposedly broke down in 1920. Photo by Suzy Krone.

This abandoned railway line was originally started by the Brunswick and Birmingham Railway, which was formed in 1900 with the intent to connect its namesake towns. After building the initial segment of the line between Brunswick and Offerman in 1903, the B&B was soon bought out by the Atlantic & Birmingham Railway, and construction continued. The line went through several owners over the next few years, and was extended to Manchester in 1908 (just a little over halfway between Brunswick and Birmingham). The line eventually came under the control of the Atlantic Coast Line in 1926, with complete ownership coming 20 years later as the ACL's Western Division. By this time, the line had been extended through Alma and reached as far as Nicholls. However, the line from Brunswick to Alma was abandoned in 1953, while the remainder of the line (Alma to Nicholls) was purchased by the Seaboard Coast Line, and was finally owned by CSX. Abandonment of that segment came in 1986.

Today, most of the right-of-way serves as a power line corridor that stretches from Brunswick to Alma. A few mileposts remain to mark the line; a majority of these are from the days of the Brunswick and Birmingham Railway.

Suzy adds: I've also heard a story that a train once broke down on a trestle over a swamp/creek west of Brunswick in 1920 and that it took 3 days for rescue to reach the train. I don't have any press clippings to prove if this story is true. I do have pics of the old trestle though.

Thanks to Suzy Krone for contributing information about this route.

the path from hwy 341 to buffalo creek was the hardest part to get to. there are old concrete tressels and it go's thru a hunting club. also there is pilings from another tressel across hwy 32.

tracy boggan
brunswick, GA
3/30/2010

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Zirkle did have people who lived there. I'm not sure how big a place it was. My mom mentioned living there at one point; would have been in the 30's. Jesup

Mike
Jesup, GA
7/31/2010

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ZIRKLE, Pierce County. Originally (1904-05) known as DIXON SIDING, it was located six miles southeast of Patterson. A depot was erected about 1910, named Zirkle in honor of local lumberman, L.A. Zirkle. The town declined after the Davis-Zirkle Lumber Co. mill closed down in 1926.

Note: My grandfather worked for Davis-Zirkle Lumber Company and was injured in an accident at Zirkle in October 1916. He was taken to a hospital in Savannah where he died on Oct. 23, 1916. He and his family lived in the lumber mill town known as Zirkle when he died.

Jim Hilliard
Cumming, GA
4/29/2011

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My granddaddy lived in Zirkle as a boy. His maternal grandfather, Martin Manning, leased the land to the mill owners. I found the paperwork in the Pierce County courthouse records. I have some copies of paperwork from the one of the Zirkle great-grandchildren and will gladly share with you. The papers show that there was 50 houses and lists the pieces of mill equipment - I guess this was when the owners were selling the mill. My granddad's father was killed in Zirkle while cutting timber - around 1919.

Terri Chancey
Waycross, GA
7/16/2011

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From the information I've received over the years my Family migrated to the area and worked for the lumber company. None of this came to light until after I dug up a 25 cent coin good for merchandise in the Zirkle general Store (or something)They had their own currency, who forgot to mention that in History class?

Tyler Passmore
Blackshear, GA
1/17/2012

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As a child in the early 1950s going to visit my Great grand mother I can remember the train coming though Rockingham at night. The smell of burning coal and the sound of the whistle as the train rumbled through. The depot had burned but there was enough for me and my cousins to play in.

John McCorquodale
Mims, FL
1/25/2012

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ACUTULLY FROM NY MOVED HERE IN 1978 , I AM DOING OR RATHER HELPING MY DAUGHTER DO HIST, SHE WAS BORN IN BWK GA , AND ANY PHOTOS, OR ARTICLES WILL HELP HER ,, KIM CLARK PLS SEND ALL THAT YOU HAVE OR WISH TO SHARE TO SANDRAHYATT73@YAHOO.COM THANK YOU FOR SHARING A PART OF HISTORY . ...

SANDRA HYATT
HORTENSE, GA
2/29/2012

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I have taken lots of pictures at Zirkle and am very interested in any history about this place. I have a good bit but would like to get more. Please contact me if you have any. Thanks. Wmorganphoto@hotmail.com or call 912 288-0810.

Wayne Morgan
Brantley county, GA
3/5/2012

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My father was born in Zirkle in the 1930's. (He died last year.)He lived in that same area until joining the Air Force. His family still lives nearby in Hortense.

He always described the place as "just a stop on the railroad". I didn't know anything else about it. Thanks for the info and photos. Much appreciated.

Valerie L.
Carriere, MS
4/23/2014

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I am researching any information that I can get on Zirkle. Is it still available to be visited? I am researching this to make a model railroad that serviced this town. Any and all information would be very helpful. Thank you.

James Maines
Brunswick, GA
11/7/2014

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