North Carolina Railroads - Wilson & Fayetteville Railroad


Year Chartered or Incorporated

Year Line Operational

Year Service Ended

Original Starting Point

Original Ending Point





Wilson, NC

Fayetteville, NC
* 1899 - Merged into the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad.
Originally built and owned by the Wilmington & Weldon Railroad and the first section of the Fayetteville Cutoff to be completed and operational.

The Fayetteville Cutoff was originated in 1885 because the Atlantic Coast Line's north-south main line still went from Weldon to Wilmington. Since the competition had developed shorter, more-direct routes to the south, the extra miles to Wilmington was increasingly seen as an impediment to growth. As a result, Atlantic Coast Line management planned a new line more directly from Wilson, NC to Florence, SC. This planned line would pass through Fayetteville and would cross the Cape Fear & Yadkin Valley Railway twice.

The "Fayetteville Cutoff" was built in three phases.

In 1885-1886, the upper 70-mile Wilson-to-Fayetteville portion was built. The line did not see much traffic, but it did interchange with the Cape Fear & Yadkin Valley Railway.

In 1886-1888, the lower 24-mile Pee Dee-to-Rowland portion was built. It saw very little traffic.

The middle 43-mile Fayetteville-to-Rowland portion was not completed until 1892. The death of the Atlantic Coast Line president, the driving force behind the cutoff, and opposition from the town of Wilmington had postponed completion.

The completion of the "Fayetteville Cutoff" in 1892, combined with the takeover of the Cape Fear & Yadkin Valley Railway by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad in 1894, resulted in the first abandonment of the original CF&YV line.

It was immediately clear that the two lines south from Fayetteville were redundant. The original line was abandoned in 1899 from Fayetteville to Hope Mills, and to a point just west of Parkton.

Towns on Route:


Contentnea (1890s)

Lucama (1884)

Boyett (1888)

Kenly (1887)

Beulah > Bagley (1888)

Micro (1891)



Four Oaks (1887)

Godwins > Benson (1886)

Wade > Lucknow (1886) > Dunn (1886)

Godwin (1887)

Wade (1886)

Beard (1892)


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