Waynesboro, MS to Mobile, AL
This abandoned railway was originally part of a Mobile & Ohio mainline that extended between Mobile, AL and Jackson, TN. It is believed that this line was built in the mid-1800s about the time of the Civil War when the M&O was chartered to tap into the lucrative trade that was occurring between inland states and the coast along the Gulf of Mexico.
The line has been through many owners in its life: the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio; the Illinois Central Gulf; the Gulf and Mississippi; and MidSouth.
Midsouth abandoned this portion of the line in 1992. North of Waynesboro, the line is still active and in use by the Meridian Southern Railway, who serves a number of customers in Waynesboro. They also utilize the rest of the line up to Meridian, where they connect with the KCS.
I'm not sure what rail line it was, there is a section abandoned starting in Merdian headed up to Union and further but not sure how far that line went. I think it was ICG that pulled up the tracks and sold or reused them elsewhere.
did some checking it was the meridian&memphis built in 1910-1920 bought by gm&n later to be gm&o
The abandoned line u speak of Joseph was GM&O that went from Meridian to Jackson.. Union had a small yard where both GM&O lines met. Most of that trackage has been gone for over 30 years now. ICG abandoned most of the line because they already owned what is now known as the Meridian Speedway. The only part that remains in a section from Union to Sebastapol where they service a Chicken Feed Mill. KCS owns it now by the way.
This looks to me to be a stupid abandonment. Why would they abandon their only route to Mobile? I imagine KCS is probably wishing they had this line intact, especially with the widening of the Panama Canal.
I never thought this made any sense. Having rail access to a major port (Mobile) would seem to be considered a great asset for a railroad. Now East MS is looking into building a new RR from Waynesboro to Lucedale that would connect to Mobile and Pascagoula, MS via rail. So basically looking at building back what already existed up until about 20-25 years ago. Of course the cost of doing this may make impossible to actually construct. The revenue prospects show that it would be prosperous but obviously might make it prohibitive to do. We will see what happens in the next few years.