Photo Friday – Crossville Depot

In 1900, the dreams of having a railroad through Crossville were realized. The Tennessee Central began operation with an old boxcar as the Crossville depot. Medal of Honor winner Sergeant Alvin C. York departed and returned from the Crossville Depot during World War I, and later, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt who was here to visit the Cumberland Homesteads “New Deal” project. The Depot was featured in a famous scene from the movie Sergeant York. The railroad stopped running and tracks were removed in Cumberland County in the early 1980s, and in 1996 the Depot was renovated as a community project by the Rotary Clubs of Cumberland County. Currently, the Depot is a gift and coffee shop, and meeting facility.

Photo Friday – Southern Railway Freight Depot

Southern Railway Freight Depot in Maryville, Tennessee near the end of the branch line from Knoxville, Tennessee. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places listings in Blount County, Tennessee on July 25, 1989.

Photo Gallery: Blount County

Ringling Bros. Blue Unit Circus Train

I was finally able to photograph the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus Train during it’s home run to Tampa, FL. I have been trying to catch the train for several years during a jump and was able to catch it today as it came through Knoxville.

2009 Blue Unit Circus Train:
—61 cars (40 conventional passenger-type cars; 21 TTX-[type] piggyback flats)
—4,490 Tons (when fully loaded)
—5,409 Feet (WITHOUT host RR’s power attached; 1 mile = 5,280 feet)

The following links will take you to the two sets of photos I shot today.

North Group – Ringling Bros. Blue Unit

South Group – Ringling Bros. Blue Unit

Additional Reference:, Yahoo Circus Train Group

Photo Friday – Southern Railway Depot

The Southern Terminal is railway passenger and warehouse depot located at 306 W. Depot Street in Knoxville, Tennessee. The present depot was constructed in 1903, although previous structures are documented in the city from the 1850s. The 1903 depot was designed by Frank P. Milburn, who had designed train stations throughout the south. It is on the National Register of Historic Places, and lies within Knoxville’s Jackson Avenue Historic District.

The depot is notable for it’s signature corbel-stepped gables. It also has arched windows and coffered ceilings in the former waiting rooms and restaurant. The clock tower was removed in 1945, apparently due to structural problems. The dining rooms, baggage check, and mail rooms were located on the lower level of the facility. Ticketing and waiting rooms were on the upper level.

Photo Gallery: Southern Railway Depot

Photo Friday – Loudon Railroad Trestle

Today’s photo is of the Loudon Railroad Trestle that spans the Tennessee River in Loudon, TN.

This trestle, of high strategic value, was set on fire Sept. 2, 1863, by General S.B. Buckner, C.S.A., in retiring south before the advance of General Ambrose Burnside from Kingston. The Federals ran off a train from the south end Oct. 28, and the Confederates did likewise Dec. 2-3, in successful retirements northward.