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On To Alabama 4/14/2021

by Chris Guenzler

The two intrepid travellers left Enterprise in St. Louis, Missouri in our Nissan Altima and headed to Interstate 70 across the Mississippi River and then Interstate 64. We drove about 48 miles and exited onto Illinois 127. This took us to the town of Nashville (yes, there is a Nashville, Illinois) which actually has the only remaining train station in the county.

The Louisville and Nashville station in Nashville, built in 1885. As we were approaching town, we just missed photographing a trio of Evansville and Western engines on a light power move. Elizabeth and I drove to Pinckneyville for a steam engine at American Thresherman's Show but found something else first.

Illinois Central caboose 199414. We found the tracks the steam engine runs on but surmised the engine must be stored somewhere on the property as it was not visible. From here we drove to Grand Tower on the Mississippi River.

Central Illinois Public Service 0-4-0T 2 built in 1929 by H.K. Porter on display at Devil's Backbone Park.

My lovely wife Elizabeth along with the steam engine.

The plaque of the Central Illinois Public Service 2.

The Mississippi River from Devil's Backbone Park in Grand Tower. Our next stop was in Jonesboro.

Illinois Central caboose 9765 next to the station.

The Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Jonesboro station built in 1925 which now houses the library.

Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Station One Mile sign.

Gulf, Mobile and Ohio "Jonesboro Corporation Line" sign.

Flowers were prevalent along the route to Tamms.

The joint Chicago and Eastern Illinois and Gulf, Mobile and Ohio station in Tamms built in 1899.

Searchlight signal in Tamms.

Interesting diamond on display at the station.

Illinois Central Gulf caboose 191002, originally Pennsylvania Railroad 478114.

Plaque on the station building.

The sign in front of the station. We drove through Cairo, Illinois, a place that my family drove through in 1971, on the way to the campground south of town. This was when there were race riots taking place. As we made our way through town, it brought back a lot of memories of the trip before we came to the bridge across the Ohio River.

The bridge across the Ohio River that we crossed.

The Ohio River during our crossing of it. We were now in Kentucky and made our first stop in Bardwell.

Chesapeake and Ohio caboose 90209 built in 1949 which became Chessie System 900209.

This is the site of the Illinois Central station in Bardwell. Passenger service ceased in the 1970's and in 1976, the depot received recognition far beyond western Kentucky when it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Illinois Central Railroad Station and Freight Depot. Despite its historic significance, the depot no longer stands; its site is now an empty lot along the rail line. The depot remains listed on the National Register despite its destruction.

More beautiful wild flowers on the way to our next station at State Line.

Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis station in State Line, built in 1901.

My very special wife Elizabeth and the State Line depot.

The Kentucky Heritage Society's sign for the station. We next headed into Union City and the Discovery Park of America. This attraction is closed on Wednesdays for COVID-19 cleaning so we had to take our pictures through the fence.

Swedish State Railways 4-6-0 1149 built in 1913. It operated on the Belfast and Moosehead Lake Railway in Maine, then Great Smoky Mountains in Dillsboro, North Carolina, last operated in 2007. The caboose in the picture is Gulf, Mobile and Ohio 2618 which used to be on display at Union Station in Union City.

Views of the display at Discovery Park of America. We went to lunch at Arby's and I talked to Dave Smetko who told us about the depot in Union City.

The joint Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis and Gulf, Mobile and Ohio station built in 1900.

The plaque for the Elam caboose, now at the Discovery Park of America. We then switched drivers with Elizabeth taking over and driving us to Maury Park in Columbia.

These cars were used in service by Armour Fertilizer Works.

Armour Fertilizer Works 0-4-0T 9 built in 1927 and used in Columbia, Tennessee.

The plaques about the donation of the steam engine.

View of the full train set. Maury Park is also home to the Mid-South Live Steamers.

Former Atlantic Coast Line caboose 0656 which became Seaboard Coast Line 0656, then Seaboard System 20656 and finally CSX 20656.

Views of the Mid-South Live Steamers. We were very impressed and surprised at the extent of their track here and will come back to ride it sometime in the future. Our next stop was in Lynnville at the Lynnville Railroad Museum which was closed when we arrived.

A replica of the Louisville and Nashville station in Lynnville built in 1995.

St. Louis and O'Fallon Railway 2-6-2 8 built in 1924 which last operated for Republic Steel in Birmingham, Alabama as 294. It now bears the name Lynnville Railroad 7.

Museum scene.

My wonderful wife Elizabeth and the steam engine.

Lynnville Railroad Museum sign.

Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis coach 742.

Unknown flat car.

Illinois Central Gulf caboose 199441, originally Illinois Central 9441 painted as Louisville and Nashville. Our final stop of the day was Elkmont, Alabama.

This Louisville and Nashville caboose is actually Seaboard Coast Line 0139.

The Louisville and Nashville station in Elkmont, built in 1887. We had dinner at the Red Caboose Cafe across the street and were surprised by how good the food was. Elizabeth then drove us to Decatur and checked in to the Doubletree Riverfront Hotel where we wrote the rest of the trip story and relaxed before calling it a night.