Boatright Companies’ Shortline Railroad remains one of the few privately owned in the United States.
According to Shane Boatright, Boatright Companies Founder and CEO, his proudest moment in the railroad industry was the day he first became owner of his own railroad. A lifelong passion for the industry and growth of Boatright Companies led to the purchasing of St. Marys Railroad in 2007. The shortline, which has been in constant operation since 1865, primarily services companies transporting paper products and items needed for the Kings Bay naval base, including ballistic missiles. The route runs from St. Marys to Kingsland, Georgia.
The railroad was first known as the St. Marys and Kingsland Railroad, then the name was changed to Atlantic, Waycross and Northern (A.W. & N.). On January 24, 1918, the railroad was sold to Southern Fertilizer and Chemical Company in Savannah. The name was at that time changed to St. Marys Railroad, as it remains today.
ST MARYS RAILROAD KEY DATES
- 1865 – Railroad begins operating.
- 1920s – Model T Truck frame with wheels – “The Toonerville Trolley” – was used to carry passengers and mail from St. Marys to Kingsland. The city still uses the Toonerville at special events through the streets of historic St. Marys.
- 1939 - The railroad was sold to St. Marys Kraft Corporation, a subsidiary of Gilman Paper Company.
- 1945 - The first diesel engine was used on the rail. This Diesel Engine #500, known as the "Goat", powered the train which consisted of engines, flats, cars, hoppers and tank cars. At this time, the rail transported coal, pulpwood chips, chemicals, paper and other raw materials.
- 1955 - A four-mile spur was added to service the United States Army Ammunitions storage terminal at Kings Bay. Since then, St. Marys Railroad has become one of the most efficient short-line railroads in the country. Eleven miles of track join St. Marys to Kingsland where the interchange occurs for CSXT.
For more information on Boatright Railroad Products, please contact us.
St. Marys Waterfront
St. Marys, Georgia, the gateway to Cumberland Island National Seashore and home of Kings Bay Sub-Base, remains one of Georgia's best kept secrets - a place rich in history, natural beauty, Southern charm and warm hospitality.
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