Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad
|Dates of operation||1832–1850|
|Successor||Memphis and Charleston Railroad|
|Track gauge||5 ft (1,524 mm)|
The Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad ran from Decatur in Morgan County through the northern half of Lawrence County through Courtland, then into Colbert County and ended in Tuscumbia, Alabama where it connected to the Tuscumbia Railway Company.
Construction began in mid-1832, the first segment between Tuscumbia and Leighton was completed in November of that year. Traffic between those two cities began at the day of completion. The second segment between Leighton and Decatur was completed in June 1834.
Construction was speedy because of the large cotton industry in North Alabama. Barges could not pass through the rapids caused by the Shoals along the Tennessee River between Florence, and Decatur. The Shoals Canal was congested and the state pursued funding for a railroad between The Shoals and the calmer waters in Decatur.
In 1850 it was incorporated into the Memphis and Charleston Railroad which eventually merged into the Southern Railway, a predecessor of Norfolk Southern. The line is still operated by Norfolk Southern Railway and serves as a vital railroad link between The Shoals, and the city of Decatur.
- Old Rail History Website listing with details and map
- National Transportation Enhancements Clearinghouse - Tuscumbia Landing
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