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Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railroad

File:1865 RFP Rail Richmond.jpgThe Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Potomac Railroad (reporting mark RFP) was a railroad connecting Richmond, Virginia, to Washington, D.C. It is now a portion of the CSX Transportation system.

The RF&P was a bridge line, with a slogan of "Linking North & South," on a system that stretched about 113 miles.[1] For the major portion of its existence, the RF&P connected with the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway, the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad and Seaboard Air Line Railroad at Richmond. At Alexandria and through trackage rights to Union Station in Washington, D.C., connections were made with the Pennsylvania Railroad, Baltimore and Ohio Railroad and the Southern Railway. There was a connection to the Washington and Old Dominion Railroad at Potomac Yard, and an interchange with the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway at Doswell.

 

 

 

RF&P History

The Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railroad was chartered on February 25, 1834, to run from Richmond north via Fredericksburg to the Potomac River. It opened from Richmond to Hazel Run in 1836, to Fredericksburg on January 23, 1837, and the rest of the way to the Potomac River at Aquia Creek on September 30, 1842. Steamboat service to Washington, D.C., and the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was provided by the Washington and Fredericksburg Steamboat Company, later renamed the Potomac Steamboat Company, controlled by the railroad after 1845.[2]

On October 11, 1870,[3] an extension to the north toward Quantico was authorized at a Special meeting of the company's stockholders. The company's charter limited this branch to 10 miles, leaving it 1.7 miles short of the Alexandria and Fredericksburg Railroad. This split from the existing line at Brooke and ran north to Quantico, also on the Potomac. The old line to the Aquia Creek wharf was abandoned on the opening of the Quantico wharf on May 1, 1872.[4]

On the other end of the line, the Alexandria and Washington Railroad was chartered on February 27, 1854, to build from the south end of the Long Bridge (14th Street Bridge) over the Potomac River south to Alexandria. That line opened in 1857. The railroad went bankrupt and was sold July 9, 1887, being reorganized November 23, 1887, as the Alexandria and Washington Railway. In 1873 the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad's branch over the Long Bridge opened, giving a route into Washington, D.C., over which the A&W obtained trackage rights.

The Alexandria and Fredericksburg Railway was chartered February 3, 1864, to continue the line from Alexandria to Fredericksburg. It opened on July 2, 1872, only reaching Quantico, the north end of the RF&P. At Quantico the 1.7-mile (2.7 km) Potomac Railroad, chartered April 21, 1867, and opened May 1, 1872, connected the two lines. It was leased to the RF&P for 28 years from May 17, 1877. On March 31, 1890, the two companies terminating in Alexandria merged to form the Washington Southern Railway. Until November 1, 1901, it was operated by the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad and its successor the Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington Railroad (part of the Pennsylvania Railroad system). The Potomac Railroad lease was transferred to the Washington Southern on June 30, 1904. On February 24, 1920, the Washington Southern was formally merged into the RF&P.

The Richmond-Washington Company was incorporated September 5, 1901, as a holding company, owning the entire capital stock of the two railroads. The stock of the company was owned equally by the Pennsylvania Railroad, Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, Southern Railway, Seaboard Air Line Railway and Chesapeake and Ohio Railway. Four of these companies have since become part of CSX. The Southern Railway is now part of Norfolk Southern, and does not use the former RF&P; the former Pennsylvania Railroad has been split between CSX and Norfolk Southern.

From 1902 to 1908, major sections of the main line totalling 21 miles (34 km) were relocated.

Company officers

Presidents of the Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railroad have included[5]:

  • John A. Lancaster, 1834-1836.
  • Conway Robinson, 1836-1838.
  • Joseph M. Sheppard, 1836-1840.
  • Moncure Robinson, 1840-1847.
  • Edwin Robinson, 1847-1860.
  • Peter V. Daniel, Jr., 1860-1871.
  • John M. Robinson, 1871-1878.
  • Robert Ould, 1878-1881.
  • Joseph P. Brinton, 1881-1889.
  • E. D. T. Myers, 1889-1905.
  • William J. Leake, 1905-1907.
  • William White, 1907-1920
  • Eppa Hunton, Jr., 1920-1932.
  • Norman Call, 1932-1955.
  • William T. Rice, 1955-1957.
  • Wirt P. Marks, Jr., 1957-1960.
  • Stuart Shumate, 1961-1981.
  • John J. Newbauer, Jr., 1981-1985.
  • Richard L. Beadles, 1985-1986.
  • Frank A. Crovo, Jr., 1986-1991.

Branches

Richmond Connection
The Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac and Richmond and Petersburg Railroad Connection was chartered March 3, 1866, and opened May 1, 1867, as a connection between the RF&P and the Richmond and Petersburg Railroad (later part of the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad) west of downtown Richmond. It was operated jointly by those two companies. In addition, a downtown connection was owned by the R&P past Broad Street Station.

Louisa
The Louisa Railroad was chartered in 1836, running from the RF&P at Doswell west to Louisa. At first it was operated as a branch of the RF&P, but it was reorganized as the Virginia Central Railroad in 1850 and merged into the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad in 1868 as its oldest predecessor.

Rosslyn
The short branch from the north end to Rosslyn opened in 1896, and was sold to the Rosslyn Connecting Railroad in 1903, which was controlled by the Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington Railroad.

Ashland Amtrak(RF&P) Station-Visitor's Center.JPG     

Ashland Station                                                    Broad Street Station (Richmond)

Station listing

Milepost City Station Opening date Connections and notes
CFP110.1 Alexandria RO Interlocking   north end of the RF&P at Potomac Yard, continues via trackage rights over Baltimore and Potomac Railroad (PRR) to Union Station in Washington, D.C.
junction with Rosslyn Connecting Railroad (PRR)
  Crystal City   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line and Manassas Line
CFP106.5 Slater's Lane   junction with Norfolk Southern (SOU) branch to Mirant power plant and Robinson Terminal warehouse on the Alexandria waterfront. Defective equipment detector.
CFP105.3 Alexandria 1905 Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line and Manassas Line
Amtrak Carolinian, Northeast Regional, Palmetto, Silver Meteor and Silver Star
CFP104.3 AF Interlocking   junction with Orange and Alexandria Railroad (SOU)
CFP99.3 Springfield Franconia 1870 Closed 1952. Replaced by Franconia–Springfield (WMATA station) with additional Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line and Amtrak NortheastRegional service in 1997.
CFP95.7 Newington Newington   Station also known at times as "Accotink"; was interchange point with the U.S. Government Branch to Fort Belvoir.
CFP92.5 Lorton Lorton   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
Amtrak Auto Train
junction with Lorton and Occoquan Railroad
CFP89.9 Colchester Colchester
CFP89.4 Woodbridge Woodbridge   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
Amtrak Northeast Regional; station also known at times as "Occoquan".
  Rippon   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
CFP82.4 Cherry Hill Cherry Hill
CFP78.8 Quantico Quantico   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
Amtrak Carolinian and Northeast Regional
    Widewater
CFP68.1 Stafford Brooke   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
  Falmouth Leeland   Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
CFP59.4 Fredericksburg Fredericksburg 1910 Virginia Railway Express Fredericksburg Line
Amtrak Carolinian and Northeast Regional
junction with Virginia Central Railway
CFP51.5   Summit
CFP46.9   Guinea
CFP44.5   Woodford
    Bowling Green Park
CFP37.8   Milford 1891
CFP33   Penola 1886
CFP27.1   Ruther Glen  
CFP21.8 Doswell Doswell   Rebuilt in 1928. Junction with Virginia Central Railroad (C&O).
CFP14.8 Ashland Ashland 1866 Rebuilt 1890 and 1923. Currently serves Amtrak's Northeast Regional line
CFP11.5   Elmont
CFP8.1   Glen Allen   Closed in 1956.
CFP6.4   Laurel
  Richmond Staples Mill Road 1975 Amtrak Carolinian, Palmetto, Northeast Regional, Silver Meteor and Silver Star
CFP1.7 AY Interlocking   junction with Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac and Richmond and Petersburg Railroad Connection at Acca Yard
  Broad Street Station 1917  

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