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REGIONAL HISTORY

Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum is located in a region with a rich history. Here you will find file resources so that you can enjoy the many articles that have featured our region’s history. Click the Learn More links below to access the files.

THE EAST TENNESSEE (THE CRITICAL LINK)

In the 1830s, the frontier that was East Tennessee needed improved transportation to  reach seaports and commercial centers east of the Appalachians. The first step, in late-1831,  was the chartering of the Lynchburg and New  River Railroad, designed to link the James River and Kanawha Canal at Lynchburg, Va., with the Tennessee River at Knoxville.

CIVIL WAR ECHOES AT THE TENNESSEE

Over 50 years ago, in 1961, the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum (TVRM) was founded by a group of Chattanooga-area railfans. Most of these guys were members of the Atlanta Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society, who were tired of driving over 200 miles round trip on pre-Interstate highways just to attend the monthly meetings. A couple of years after TVRM was formed, one of the founders, Paul Merriman, purchased steam locomotive No. 12 from the dieselizing Kentucky & Tennessee Railroad of Stearns.

EAST TENNESSEE & GEORGIA RAILROAD AND THE CIVIL WAR

The year 2013 marks one of the sesquicentennial anniversaries of the Civil War. Mark Brainard, a keen Civil War historian (and re-enactment participant), is also a volunteer at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum in Chattanooga.  TVRM owns and operates three miles of former Southern Railway right-of-way that, it turns out for Civil War aficionados, is hallowed ground.

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