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Atlanta and St. Andrews Bay Railroad


Atlanta and St. Andrews Bay Railroad

Atlanta and St. Andrews Bay Railroad
Reporting mark ASAB
Locale Alabama and Florida
Dates of operation 1906 (1906)–1994 (1994)
Successor Bay Line Railroad
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)

The Atlanta and St. Andrews Bay Railroad (reporting mark ASAB), also known as the Bay Line, was a Class I railroad which operated in Alabama and Florida. The company was founded in 1906 and opened its mainline between Dothan, Alabama and Panama City, Florida in 1908. Later reclassified as a short-line railroad, its assets were acquired by the Bay Line Railroad in 1994.


  • History 1
    • Graceville branch 1.1
    • Abbeville branch 1.2
  • Notes 2
  • References 3


As with many railroads in the region, the A&SAB began in the minds of timber investors and land developers seeking to access the agricultural resources of the

  • "2008 Alabama Rail Plan" (PDF). December 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 August 2008. Retrieved 10 September 2010. 
  • Lewis, Edward A. (1991). American Shortline Railway Guide (4th ed.). Waukesha, WI:  
  • Lewis, Edward A. (1996). American Shortline Railway Guide (5th ed.). Waukesha, WI:  
  • Moody's Investor Service (1921). Moody's Manual of Investments, American and Foreign: Transportation. 
  • Nelson, Bruce (2005). "The Bay Line Railroad". The Railroad Press (65): 44–49. 
  • Smiley, Tom (1989). "Modeling the Bay Line Railroad". Prototype Modeler (January/February): 20–27. 


  1. ^ Nelson 2005
  2. ^ Moody's 1921, p. 352
  3. ^ Smiley 1989
  4. ^ Smiley 1989
  5. ^ Smiley 1989
  6. ^ a b Lewis 1991, pp. 8; 27
  7. ^ a b c Lewis 1996, pp. 40–41
  8. ^ Smiley 1989
  9. ^ Alabama 2008, p. 4.2
  10. ^ Smiley 1989
  11. ^ Nelson 2005
  12. ^ "STB Finance Docket No. 19936". 21 June 1996. Retrieved 27 November 2010. 


Stone Container Corporation purchased the line between Grimes and Abbeville on March 1, 1989.[7] The primary source of traffic is a woodchip mill near Abbeville, which provides woodchips for the Panama City paper mill. The Bay Line accessed the Abbeville & Grimes branch via trackage rights with CSX between Grimes and Dothan.[11] The Abbeville branch was included in the sale to the Bay Line Railroad.[7] The A&G was formally merged into the Bay Line on June 26, 1996.[12]

Abbeville branch

The Seaboard System Railroad, successor to the Louisville and Nashville, abandoned the line into Graceville on January 16, 1984.[9] The A&SAB purchased the small yard and wye track in Graceville from the vacating Seaboard and continued serving the city.[10] Declining traffic prompted the abandonment of the branch by the mid 1990s.

Construction of the branch spanning 7 miles (11 km) from Louisville and Nashville Railroad. This allowed for interchange between the two railroads and access to a Southwest Forest Industries woodchip mill located in Graceville that supplied the Panama City paper mill. In addition to the woodchip mill, Gold Kist operated a peanut mill in Graceville.[8]

Graceville branch

In 1989, Stone Container Corporation purchased from CSX Transportation a branch line from Grimes to Abbeville, Alabama. The new railroad, the Abbeville-Grimes Railway Company, was operated by the A&SAB.[6] On January 1, 1994, the Rail Management Corporation acquired the assets of the railroad and created a new company, the Bay Line Railroad, to operate it.[7]

TOFC service began in 1962 with the construction of ramps at Panama City and Cottondale. Additional expansion came with the construction of a branch line to Graceville in 1971. In 1979 International Paper sold the railroad to Southwest Forest Industries, and the railroad changed hands again with the sale of Southwest Forest Industries to the Stone Container Corporation in 1987.[5]

World War II brought about a considerable increase in traffic on the A&SAB. Several military bases in the vicinity of Panama City ensured the Bay Line would remain a hotbed of activity for the duration of the war. Shortly after the war in 1947, the A&SAB was granted Class I status.[4]


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