North Carolina Railroads - Charlotte & South Carolina Railroad


Year Chartered or Incorporated

Year Line Operational

Year Service Ended

Original Starting Point

Original Ending Point





Charlotte, NC

Columbia, SC

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*1869 merged with the Columbia & Augusta Railroad to become the Charlotte, Columbia & Augusta Railroad.
1846, chartered in South Carolina. 1847, chartered in North Carolina. Was the Charlotte & Columbia Railroad. Unsure if it was a simple name change or a re-organization.

The Charlotte & South Carolina Railroad linked Charlotte, NC and its growing web of railroads, with Columbia, SC and the South Carolina Railroad. It was a vital link in supplying General Robert E. Lee and Richmond, VA when the Piedmont Railroad was completed in 1863. The gauge change between this road and the North Carolina Railroad caused a major bottleneck throughout the Civil War.

By October of 1852, the Charlotte & South Carolina Railroad was carrying freight, although the road was not quite complete into town. The first passenger train arrived at Charlotte on October 21, 1852 and was greeted by a tremendous celebration. Crowds came from Columbia, Winnsboro, Chester, and other points, and newspapers estimated there were 20,000 people present. The Columbia band furnished music and there were a number of speeches followed by a barbecue on the lawn of the Female Academy, and at night a dance and fireworks display. Henceforth there was daily passenger service between Charlotte and Columbia.

The town of Ridgeway, SC takes its name from the ridge which bisects this lower area of Fairfield County between the Broad and Wateree Rivers. When the Charlotte & South Carolina Railroad, of which Mr. Edward G. Palmer of Ridgeway was the first president, was completed in 1852, the new railroad followed the ridge north of Columbia toward Winnsboro. Ridgeway drains east of the railroad into the Wateree River, and west of the railroad into the waters of the Broad River. Ridgeway, at an elevation of six hundred and twenty-five (625) feet above sea level, is the highest point on the Southern Railway between Augusta, GA, and Charlotte, NC.

In 1852, the Charlotte & South Carolina Railroad first traveled through York County, SC, with a station at Fort Mill. The trestle over the Catawba River, built in 1851, burned down during an 1865 Civil War skirmish and was rebuilt a year later.

Towns on Route (in NC):


Morrows (1850s)

Mount Moriah > Pineville (1852)

NC/SC State Line

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