Seaboard Coast Line Railroad

The SCL was created on July 1, 1967 by the merger of the Seaboard Air Line Railroad and the SCL logoAtlantic Coast Line Railroad. Combining 4,123 miles of Seaboard tracks with 5,743 miles of ACL rails, the new railroad's length equalled the distance from Key West to Alaska to San Diego and back to Key West. Unfortunately, SCL's mileage consisted of mostly parallel lines limited to six southeastern coastal states. That fact would ultimately lead to extensive abandonment of lines in Georgia and elsewhere.

Serious merger talks between the two began in 1957, or earlier. In September of the following year, Thomas Rice of the ACL and John W. Smith of theSCL streamliner Seaboard made a joint announcement of preliminary plans to merge. It would not be until late 1963, however, that the Interstate Commerce Commission voted to approve the marriage, and not until April 1967 that the U.S. Supreme Court ended over three years of federal court battles initiated by merger opponents.

In 1972, Seaboard Coast Line became part of the “Family Lines System,” a marketing name used jointly by SCL and the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, along with their subsidiaries Georgia Railroad, Clinchfield Railroad, Atlanta & West Point Railroad, and Western Railway of Alabama (the last two operating under the marketing name West Point Route). The name was used from 1972 until the early 1980s.

Artwork on 1967 passenger schedules.

In 1982 Seaboard Coast Line and Louisville and Nashville Railroad merged to form the Seaboard System Railroad.

SCL engine no. 1706, Harvey E. Slade photo

SCL no. 1706 in 1971. Photo by Harvey E. Slade. (From: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory).

Fitzgerald-Abbeville abandoned 1971.
(For other abandonments, see predecessor and successor railroads.)


1968 map (141K)

Suggested Reading:

William E. Griffin, Jr, Seaboard Coast Line & Family Lines Railroad; 1967-1986, A CSX Predecessor. (Forest, VA: TLC Publishing, 2004).

Douglas B. Nuckles, Seaboard Coast Line Railroad. Lynchburg, VA: TLC Publishing, 1995.


SCL/L&N boxcar

More info at:

Atlantic Coast Line & Seaboard Air Line Railroads Historical Society

Vintage SCL photos and info at Georgia's Railroad History & Heritage. © Steve Storey

Railroad History | The Depot List | Locomotives On Display | Odds & Ends | Sources & References | Home