A Short Line Railroad Guide To U.S. Class III Carriers

In general, short lines tend to provide the most fascinating operations of any railroad.  As local, centrally based companies they are much more down-home in nature, often friendlier (than large Class Is), and are just more fun to watch than the big roads.  They also give you a look at what railroading used to be like decades ago, back during the nostalgic era.  The information here features most Class III carriers operating throughout the United States and they have been conveniently broken down by state.  The guide is compiled in alphabetical order by state and I hope you find it useful and helpful, particularly if you are planning a railfan outing and are interested in knowing where a short line operation or two can found in a particular area.

Alabama Short Line Railroad Guide

Alabama & Gulf Coast Railway

Birmingham Terminal Railway

East Alabama Railway

Huntsville-Madison County Railroad Authority

Jefferson Warrior Railroad: Headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama.

Southern Alabama Railroad

Terminal Railway-Alabama State Docks : Headquartered in Mobile, Alabama.

Arizona Short Line Railroad Guide

Apache Railway

Arizona & California Railroad

Arizona Eastern Railway: 5903 Calle De Loma, Miami, AZ 85539. Phone 928-473-2447.

Bauxite & Northern Railway: Cyanamid Road, P. O. Box 138 Bauxite, AR 72011.

Black Mesa & Lake Powell Railroad

Copper Basin Railway

Arkansas Short Line Railroad Guide

Arkansas & Missouri Railroad

Arkansas Louisiana & Mississippi Railroad

Arkansas Midland Railroad

Dardanelle & Russellville Railroad: 4416 S. Arkansas Avenue, Russellville, Arkansas 72801.

DeQueen & Eastern Railroad: 412 East Lockesburg Street, DeQueen, Arkansas 71832.

Fordyce & Princeton Railroad: P. O. Box 757, Crossett, Arkansas 71635.

Fort Smith Railroad

Little Rock & Western Railway: 306 West Choctaw Avenue, P.O. Box 146 Perry, Arkansas 72125.

Texas, Oklahoma & Eastern Railroad: Headquartered in DeQueen, Arkansas.

Winchester & Western low-nose GP9 #572 rolls through a rural grade-crossing with the "Sandman" turn at Hayfield, Virginia as it returns to Winchester during the summer of 2003.

California Short Line Railroad Guide

California Northern Railroad

Carrizo Gorge Railway

Central California Traction

Modesto & Empire Traction

Oakland Terminal RailwayHeadquartered in Oakland, California.

Pacific Harbor Line

Quincy Railroad: Headquartered in Quincy, California.

Richmond Pacific Railroad

San Diego & Imperial Valley Railroad

San Joaquin Valley Railroad

Sierra Railroad

Stockton Terminal & Eastern Railroad

Trona Railway

Ventura County Railroad

Colorado Short Line Railroad Guide

Great Western Railway: Operates an industrial park between Windsor and Greeley, Colorado.

Colorado Wyoming Railway: Headquartered in Pueblo, Colorado.

Connecticut Short Line Railroad Guide

Connecticut Southern Railroad

Housatonic Railroad: Headquarted in Canaan, Connecticut.

Delaware Short Line Railroad Guide

Delaware Coast Line Railroad: 332 Weiner Avenue, Harrington, Delaware 19952-1141. Phone 302-398-0100.

Florida Short Line Railroad Guide

Apalachicola Northern Railroad: Headquartered in Port St. Joe, Florida.

Bay Line Railroad: Located in Panama City, Florida.

Port of Manatee Railroad: Headquartered in Port Manatee, Florida.

Florida Central Railroad

Florida Midland Railroad

Florida Northern Railroad

Georgia Short Line Railroad Guide

Chattooga and Chickamauga Railway

Chattahoochee Industrial Railroad

Georgia & Florida Railway: 1019 Coastline Avenue, Albany, Georgia 31705

Georgia Central Railway

Georgia Northeastern Railroad

Georgia Southwestern Railroad

Golden Isles Terminal Railroad

Great Walton Railroad

Hartwell Railroad

Sandersville Railroad: 1700 Waco Mill Road, Sandersville, Georgia 31082. Phone 478-553-0276.

Savannah Port Terminal Railroad

St. Marys Railroad

Valdosta Railway

Idaho Short Line Railroad Guide

Eastern Idaho Railroad

Idaho, Northern & Pacific Railroad

St. Maries River Railroad

Illinois Short Line Railroad Guide

Alton & Southern Railway

Belt Railway of Chicago

Central Midland Railway

Chicago Rail Link

Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railroad: 514 North Market Street, Marion, Illinois 62959.

Effingham Railroad

Illinois RailNet: 430 W. Madison Street, Ottawa Illinois 61350.

Illinois & Midland Railroad: P. O. Box 139, Springfield, Illinios 62705.

Kankakee, Beaverville & Southern Railroad: P. O. Box 119, Iroquois, Illinios 60912.

Manufacturers Junction Railway: Headquartered in Cicero, Illinois.

South Chicago & Indiana Harbor Railway: Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio but operates in and around the Greater Chicago area.

Tazewell & Peoria Railroad: Headquartered in Creve Coeur, Illinois.

Vandalia Railroad

Aberdeen, Carolina & Western GP40-2LW #9582 and two other units work the Perdue elevator at Candor, North Carolina during early 2005. This wide-nosed Geep, and the others like it used on the AC&W, began life on the Canadian National.

Indiana Short Line Railroad Guide

Chicago Fort Wayne & Eastern Railroad

Chicago SouthShore & South Bend Railroad

Elkhart & Western Railroad

Evansville Western Railway

Indiana Northeastern Railroad

Indiana Southern Railroad

Lake Michigan and Indiana Railroad: 250 W. U.S. Highway 12, Burns Harbor, Indiana 46304.

Louisville & Indiana Railroad

Louisville New Albany & Corydon Railroad: Phone 812-738-1147 or 812-267-2745.

Dubois County Railroad

Respondek Railroad

Iowa Short Line Railroad Guide

Burlington Junction Railway

Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Railway

Iowa Northern Railway

Kansas Short Line Railroad Guide

Cimarron Valley Railroad

Dodge City, Ford & Bucklin Railway: Headquartered in Dodge City, Kansas.

Hutchinson & Northern Railway: 1662 Avenue N Hutchinson, Kansas 67554.

Kansas & Oklahoma Railroad

Kyle Railroad

Kentucky Short Line Railroad Guide

Lexington & Ohio Railroad: 443C Lexington Road, Versailles, Kentucky 40383.

RJ Corman Group

Transkentucky Transportation Railroad

Louisiana Short Line Railroad Guide

Acadiana Railway Company: 1224 Cortez, P. O. Box 1729 Opelousas, LA 70571.

Delta Southern Railroad

Louisiana & Delta Railroad

Louisiana & North West Railroad: 210 West Main Homer, Louisiana.

New Orleans Public Belt Railroad

Maine Short Line Railroad Guide

St. Lawrence & Atlantic Railroad

Maryland Short Line Railroad Guide

Canton Railroad

Georges Creek Railway: Headquartered in Westernport, Maryland.

Maryland & Delaware Railroad

Patapsco & Back Rivers Railroad: Headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland.

Massachusetts Short Line Railroad Guide

Bay Colony Railroad

Cape Cod Rails

East Brookfield & Spencer Railroad

Grafton & Upton Railroad

Massachusetts Central Railroad: 850 South Barre Road, Barre, Massachusetts 01005. Phone 978-355-0029.

Ann Arbor GP35 #394 and two other siblings pull their train southbound out of Elberta, Michigan along the main line in September, 1979. Note that all three Geeps appear to be using AAR Type B trucks (typically found on Alco and early GE models) and not standard Bloombergs. The units were trade-ins to EMD from a small fleet of Alco FAs once used by the AA.

Michigan Short Line Railroad Guide

Adrian & Blissfield Rail Road

Ann Arbor Railroad

Central Michigan Railroad

Delray Connecting Railroad

Escanaba & Lake Superior Railroad

Great Lakes Central Railroad

Huron & Eastern Railway

Lake States Railway

Lake Superior & Ishpeming Railroad: Headquartered in Marquette, Michigan.

Marquette Rail

Michigan Shore Railroad

Michigan Southern Railroad

Mid-Michigan Railroad

Mineral Range Railroad

West Michigan Railroad

Minnesota Short Line Railroad Guide

Cloquet Terminal Railroad: 315 St. Louis Avenue, Cloquet, MN 55720

Minnesota Commercial Railway

Minnesota, Dakota & Western Railway: P.O. Box 19, International Falls, Minnesota 56649.

Twin Cities & Western Railroad

Wisconsin Northern Railroad: Headquartered in Lakeville, Minnesota.

Mississippi Short Line Railroad Guide

Meridian & Bigbee Railroad: Headquartered in Meridian, Mississippi.

Mississippi Export Railroad

Tishomingo Railroad: Headquartered in Iuka, Mississippi.

Missouri Short Line Railroad Guide

Alton & Southern Railway

Missouri & Northern Arkansas Railroad

Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis

Montana Short Line Railroad Guide

Central Montana Railroad

Dakota, Missouri Valley & Western

Nebraska Short Line Railroad Guide

Nebkota Railway: 111 North Main, Chadron, Nebraska 69337.

Nebraska Central Railroad

Nebraska, Kansas & Colorado Railnet: Headquartered in Grant, Nebraska.

Nebraska Northeastern Railway: P.O. Box 26, Osmond, Nebraska 68765.

Sidney & Lowe Railroad: Headquartered in Sidney, Nebraska.

New Hampshire Short Line Railroad Guide

Claremont Concord Railroad

Milford-Bennington Railroad (PDF)

New England Central Railroad

New England Southern Railroad: Headquartered in Concord, New Hampshire.

New England Central Railroad: Headquartered in St. Albans, Vermont.

New Hampshire Northcoast Corp: Headquartered in Ossipee, New Hampshire.

St. Lawrence & Atlantic Railroad

New Jersey Short Line Railroad Guide

Belvidere & Delaware River Railway

New York & Greenwood Lake Railway: P. O. Box 106 Glen Ridge, New Jersey 07028.

Raritan Central Railway

Southern Railroad Company Of New Jersey

Morristown & Erie Railway

New Mexico Short Line Railroad Guide

Navajo Mine Railroad

Santa Fe Southern

New York Short Line Railroad Guide

Albany Port Railroad: Located at the Port of Albany; Albany, New York.

Arcade & Attica Railroad: 278 Main Street Arcade, NY 14009.

Batten Kill Railroad

Buffalo Southern Railroad

Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad

Depew, Lancaster & Western Railroad: 8364 Lewiston Road, Batavia, NY 14020.

Falls Road Railroad

Finger Lakes Railway

Kodak Park Railroad: Owned by the Eastman Kodak Company and services the Kodak Park in Rochester, New York.

Livonia, Avon & Lakeville Railroad

Lowville & Beaver Railroad Railroad

Massena Terminal Railroad: P. O. Box 347, Massena, New York 13662.

Middletown and New Jersey Railway: 140 East Main Street, Middletown, New York 10940.

Mohawk, Adirondack & Northern Railroad

New York & Atlantic Railway

New York & Lake Erie Railroad

Owego & Harford Railway

Rochester & Southern Railroad

SMS Rail Lines

South Buffalo Railway

Western New York & Pennsylvania Railroad

North Carolina Short Line Railroad Guide

Aberdeen & Rockfish Railroad

Aberdeen, Carolina & Western Railway

Atlantic & Western railway: 317 Chatham Street Sanford, North Carolina 27331.

Carolina Coastal Railway

Carolina Southern Railroad

Laurinburg & Southern Railroad: Headquartered in Laurinburg, North Carolina.

Pee Dee River Railway: Headquartered in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

Wilmington Terminal Railroad: Headquartered in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Chesapeake & Albemarle Railroad

North Dakota Short Line Railroad Guide

Dakota, Missouri Valley & Western Railroad

Northern Plains Railroad

Red River Valley & Western

Ohio Short Line Railroad Guide

Akron Barberton Cluster Railway: A subsidiary of the Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway.

Ashland Railway

Ashtabula, Carson & Jefferson Railroad

Cleveland Works Railway: 3175 Independence Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44105.

Flats Industrial Railroad: 1757 Columbus Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44113.

Indiana & Ohio Railway

Lake Terminal Railroad

Lorain Northern Railroad:  2199 East 28th Street, Lorain, Ohio 44055.

Mahoning Valley Railway: P. O. Box 589, Campbell, Ohio 44405.

Northern Ohio & Western Railway

Ohio Central System

Ohio & Pennsylvania: Part of the Ohio Central System.

Toledo, Lake Erie & Western Railway

Oklahoma Short Line Railroad Guide

Arkansas & Oklahoma Railroad: P.O. Box 366, 103 South Central Wilburton, OK 74578.

Blackwell Northern Gateway Railroad: 1910 W. Furguson Blackwell, OK 74631. Phone 580-789-4534.


Hollis & Eastern Railroad

Port of Muskogee: Serves the Porf of Muskogee, Oklahoma.

Sand Springs Railway

Oregon Short Line Railroad Guide

Central Oregon & Pacific Railroad

Great Western Railway: Headquartered in Lakeview, Oregon.

Port of Tillamook Bay Railroad

Portland & Western Railroad

Pennsylvania Short Line Railroad Guide

Allegheny Valley Railroad

Brandywine Valley Railroad: Located in Coatesville, Pennsylvania.

Chestnut Ridge Railway Company: 401 Delaware Avenue Palmerton, Pennsylvania 18071.

Conemaugh & Black Lick Railroad: 825 Iron Street, Johnstown, Pennsylvania 15906.

East Erie Commercial Railroad: 1030 Lawrence Parkway, Erie, Pennsylvania 16511.

Everett Railroad

Knox & Kane Railroad: Headquartered in New Castle, Pennsylvania.

Luzerne & Susquehanna Railroad: Headquartered in Exeter, Pennslyvania.

Lycoming Valley Railroad: Headquartered in Northumberland, Pennslyvania.

Middletown & Hummelstown Railroad

New Castle Industrial Railroad: Headquartered in New Castle, Pennsylvania.

New Hope & Ivyland Railroad

Oil Creek & Titusville Lines

North Shore Railroad System

Philadelphia, Bethlehem & New England Railroad: Headquartered in Bethelem, Pennsylvania.

Pittsburgh, Allegheny & McKees Rocks Railroad: Headquartered in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania.

Reading & Northern Railroad

Southwestern Pennsylvania Railroad

Steelton & Highspire Railroad: Headquartered in Steelton, Pennsylvania.

Turtle Creek Industrial Railroad: Headquartered in Export, Pennsylvania. Phone 724-327-0280.

Tyburn Railroad: Headquartered in Morrisville, Pennsylvania.

Union Railroad

Upper Merion & Plymouth Railroad: Headquartered in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania.

York Railway

Rhode Island Short Line Railroad Guide

Seaview Railroad

South Carolina Short Line Railroad Guide

Carolina Piedmont Railroad

Lancaster & Chester Railway

Pickens Railway

South Carolina Central Railroad

South Dakota Short Line Railroad Guide

Dakota & Iowa Railroad: Headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Dakota Southern Railway: Headquartered in Chamberlain, South Dakota.

Ellis & Eastern Railroad: 1201 W. Russell, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57104.

Sisseton- Milbank Railroad: Headquartered in Sisseton, South Dakota.

SunFlour Railroad: Located between Rosholt and Veblen, South Dakota.

Tennessee Short Line Railroad Guide

Caney Fork & Western Railroad: 132 Bridge Street McMinnville, Tennessee 37110.

Conecuh Valley Railroad: Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee.

East Tennessee Railway: PO Box 1479, Johnson City, Tennessee 37605.

Knoxville & Holston River Railroad: 401 Henley Street Suite 2, Knoxville Tennessee 37902.

KWT Railway: Headquartered in Paris, Tennessee.

Nashville & Eastern Railroad

Nashville & Western Railroad

Sequatchie Valley Railroad: Headquartered in Bridgeport, Alabama.

Tennken Railroad: Headquartered in Dyersburg, Tennessee.

Tennessee Southern Railroad: Headquartered in Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee.

Walking Horse & Eastern Railroad: Headquartered in Shelbyville, Tennessee.

West Tennessee Railroad: Headquartered in Trenton, Tennessee.

Wiregrass Central Railroad: Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Texas Short Line Railroad Guide

Angelina & Neches River Railroad

Austin Western Railroad

Blacklands Railroad

Border Pacific Railroad: Headquartered in Rio Grande City, Texas.

Corpus Christi Terminal: Located at the Port of Corpus Christi.

Dallas, Garland & Northeastern Railroad

Fort Worth & Western Railroad

Galveston Railroad: P. O. Box 1108, 37th and Old Industrial Blvd., Galveston, Texas.

GWI Switching Services: Headquartered in Dayton, Texas.

Panhandle Northern Railway

Point Comfort & Northern Railway: Headquartered in Lolita, Texas.

Rockdale, Sandow & Southern Railroad: Headquartered in Rockdale, Texas.

Texas Central Business Lines: Headquartered in Waxahachie, Texas.

Timber Rock Railroad

Wichita, Tillman & Jackson Railway

Utah Short Line Railroad Guide

Deseret Western Railway

Salt Lake Garfield & Western Railway: Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Utah Railway

Vermont Short Line Railroad Guide

Vermont Rail System

Virginia Short Line Railroad Guide

Bay Coast Railroad: Located in Cape Charles, Virginia.

Buckingham Branch Railroad

Commonwealth Railway: 1136 Progress Road, Suffolk, Virginia 23434

Norfolk & Portsmouth Belt Line Railroad

Virginia Southern Railroad

Winchester & Western Railroad

Washington Short Line Railroad Guide

Bountiful Grain & Craig Mountain Railroad

Tacoma Rail

Tri-City & Olympia Railroad

West Virginia Short Line Railroad Guide

West Virgina Southern Railroad: Part of the RJ Corman System, operates a coal branch near Thurmond, West Virginia.

Little Kanawha River

South Branch Valley

West Virginia Central

Wisconsin Short Line Railroad Guide

Tomahawk Railway: Headquartered in Tomahawk, Wisconsin.

Apache Railway C424 #98 and C420 #82 head southbound for Snowflake, Arizona some time during 2006.

For more reading on short lines like those listed above consider the book American Short Line Railway Guide from author Ed Lewis. The book has gone through several updated editions to keep up with the ever-changing world of the short line industry. Today, the publication highlights almost 600 short lines across the country with general background information about each (such as roster information, rail line history, radio frequencies, etc.). If you have any interest in short lines you will very likely enjoy this book. If you're interested in perhaps purchasing this book please visit the link below which will take you to ordering information through Amazon.com, the trusted online shopping network.

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