Yulee to Callahan

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John Muir Park: John Muir Park is a small county-owned nature area that has a 1/4 mile raised boardwalk that goes to the rail bed just west of Yulee. The sturdy bed is traversing one of many low lying, swampy areas of Nassau County, so it is raised several feet above ground level. The Florida Department of Transportation erected a sign commemorating the importance of the Florida Railroad to the State's interior development. The park's namesake walked the entire length of the line in 1867 and recorded his journey in his early writings. (The marker is located about 1/2 mile west of the CSX crossing on SR 200/A1A in Yulee, FL.) Photo by John Hendricks, October 2011.

The Florida Railroad was the Sunshine State's first cross-peninsular rail line that linked the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico. Construction began in Fernandina in 1855 and was completed to Cedar Key in March of 1861. Over half of the original 155-mile long line is still active as CSX's main line to central and south Florida. However, a 15-mile section between Yulee (milepost 12) and Callahan (milepost 27), in Nassau County, was retired in 1954 when more and more SAL rail traffic was diverted onto the Gross Cutoff.

Most of this abandoned rail bed fell into private hands and is now lost to time, but there is some evidence of this historic railroad still to be found.

Thanks to John Hendricks for contributing information about this route.

Good job John.

Jan Johannes
Nassau County , FL
8/2/2012

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Great job,may the line once again live and carry trains.Great pictures also.

Harold Powell
Callahan, FL
8/5/2012

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