Virginia Blue Ridge Railway

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Virginia Blue Ridge Railway
Reporting mark VBR
Locale Virginia
Dates of operation 1914–1980
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge

The Virginia Blue Ridge Railway (VBR) is a historic intrastate short line railroad that operated in central Virginia in the 20th century.


The company was incorporated in 1914, and construction was started in 1915. The VBR extended from Tye River Depot in Nelson County, where it interchanged with the Southern Railway, to Massies Mill. The railroad followed the course of the Tye and Piney Rivers for several miles before entering the mountains. It was initially built to haul chestnut for lumber out of the heavily-timbered Piney River area to local mills until World War I. The chestnut blight wiped out much of the timbered areas. However, the railroad later served several quarries in the area where titanium dioxide and aplite were mined.[1] It passed through the communities of Roses Mill, Piney River, Canopy, Lowesville, and Buffalo Mine. [2]

The line was abandoned in 1980. In the early 21st century, part of the roadbed was being developed as a rails-to-trails project, the Blue Ridge Railway Trail.