Franklin and Carolina Railroad

The Camp Manufacturing Company got authorization in 1944, during World War II, to build a railroad connecting its paper mill in Franklin with the Atlantic Coast Line at what became "Franklin Junction." That link substituted for the loss of the railroad connection to Suffolk, after the original Norfolk Southern (not today's Class I railroad) abandoned its line between Suffolk and Franklin.

Though most traffic was related to operations at the mill, Camp Manufacturing Company got the railroad designated as an interstate carrier by the Interstate Commerce Commission. The company also invested in the Roanoke Railway Company (six miles of track linking a logging camp to the Seaboard Air Line at Thelma, North Carolina), facilitating transport of wood for processing in Franklin.

The mill was served by the Atlantic and Danville Railroad and by the Seaboard Air Line Railroad, but the link to the Atlantic Coast Line maximized competition. The Atlantic Coast Line purchased the Franklin and Carolina Railroad in 1958.

The Atlantic Coast Line and Seaboard Air Line Railroad merged to create the Seaboard Coast Line in 1967, reducing the competition between railroads. After the merger, the Seaboard Coast Line had no reason for maintain two sets of track to the mill. The former Seaboard Air Line track was retained, and the Franklin and Carolina Railroad track to Franklin Junction was removed in 1972.1



1. "Dismal Swamp Operations of Camp Manufacturing Company and The Franklin and Carolina Railroad," Southampton County Historical Society,; "Looking back: Rites held for Camp," The Tidewater News, October 4, 2013,; "North Carolina Railroads - Roanoke Railway," Carolana, (last checked November 22, 2018)

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