Central of Georgia Railway Company
Intricately engraved antique bond certificate from the Central of Georgia Railway Company dating back to the 1910's. This document, which has been signed by the company Vice President and Secretary, was printed by the American Bank Note Company and measures approximately 10" (w) by 15" (h).
This certificate's vignette features a cotton field scene at the left, men loading bales at the right and the company seal in the middle.
You will receive the exact certificate pictured.
The Central of Georgia Railway Company operated trackage in Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and Florida.
The railroad began as a cotton hauler, chartered on December 20, 1833 as the Central Railroad and Canal Company of Georgia, one of the earliest chartered railroad companies in the United States. The charter authorized the building of railroad and canal connections from the port city of Savannah into the interior of the state.
In subsequent years the Central of Georgia acquired short line operations throughout south and central Georgia and reaching into Alabama and Tennessee. One of the most important was the Macon and Western Railroad, which allowed access to the growing town of Marthasville, now Atlanta. This allowed completion of the important Savannah-Atlanta mainline.
The Central of Georgia then initiated the real beginning of the railroads in southwestern Georgia when it was instrumental in the formation of the South Western Railroad Company, chartered in December 1845. The Central would eventually reach Columbus, Albany, Americus and Fort Gaines.
To get into Alabama, the Central of Georgia bought the Montgomery and Eufaula Railroad Company in 1879, placing it into the hands of a trustee. It was reorganized and eventually conveyed to the Central on December 14, 1895. This acquisition provided a Macon-Montgomery mainline.
Reaching Birmingham was a major goal of the company. The Columbus and Western Railway Company obtained a line from Columbus to Opelika, Alabama, in 1883. Interests in the West Point Route built this line. It was extended`from Opelika to Birmingham, reaching the Magic City in 1888. The line became part of the Central in 1895.
Next the Central took aim at Chattanooga, Tennessee, by acquiring the Chattanooga, Rome and Southern Railroad Company, on May 16, 1901. The line from Chattanooga to Carrollton, Georgia had been constructed in 1888. The Central completed this line to a junction with its Macon-Atlanta main at Griffin, providing a complete line from Macon to Chattanooga that bypassed Atlanta.
The Central became a desirable property, providing a bridge for Midwest-Florida routes. In 1956, the Frisco came after the Central, but the ICC ordered the Frisco to sell its interest in 1961. Next was the Southern, and on June 17, 1963, the Central became a subsidiary of the Southern Railway.
The Central of Georgia still exists today, but only as an operating entity of the Norfolk Southern Corporation. For accounting purposes it is assigned ownership of some rolling stock and locomotives, but they are mostly indistinguishable from any other NS equipment. Some bear small "CG" sub-lettering.
The reason the "Central of Georgia" name still exists at all is that it turned out to be handy toduse in a bit of Southern Railway house keeping back in 1971. Before it was merged by the Southern, the Central of Georgia Railway had acquired control of the Savannah & Atlanta Railway, the Georgia & Florida Railway, and the Wrightsville & Tennille Railroad. So when the Southern bought the Central it bought a complicated corporate structure that included these four lines.
On July 1, 1971 the Southern decided to simplify this structure. It created a new subsidiary, the Central of Georgia Railroad Company, by merging the CG Railway Company, S&A, G&F and W&T. It is this Central of Georgia that exists today, having been carried through the Southern - Norfolk Western merger.