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Frederick Hall

C&O Milepost 134.6


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Station Number: 135
Code Number: 0198
Tel. Calls: FH

The first president of the Louisa Railroad was Frederick Overton Harris, Jr. Harris was a tobacco planter, whose Frederick Hall plantation turned out “Louisa Pride” and “Soldier’s Comfort” smoking tobacco. A Post Office opened in Frederick Hall in 1837, with William Pendleton as post master. When the railroad was built, Harris had a station built near his home and a small community grew up around the depot. From 1858 until about 1880, several schools for young women operated near Frederick Hall. The town was raided twice during the Civil War: the first time by Cutler in 1862 and the second by Captain Long (under Stoneman’s command) in 1863. Long and his men destroyed tracks and culverts and cut telegraph lines, making 15 miles of the railroad impassable. In 1864, Dahlgren passed through Frederick Hall without inflicting any damage (but he did later destroy track at Bumpass).

According to the C&O Valuation maps, Frederick Hall once had a turntable. It was retired in November,1923. There was also an additional spur track that was retired in June, 1937 (see map for its approximate location). The 1937 Side Track Record showed a 901' house track (track number 858) and a 3346' passing track (track number 857) in Frederick Hall. In March, 1949 the old water tank was retired and a new one built, along with a new pump house. The old freight house was also retired at that time. In October, 1940 the cattle pen was retired and a new depot built. The west turnout of the house track was retired in September of 1942. The agency station at Frederick Hall was discontinued in November of 1949. The water station was retired in place in May, 1958. According to the 1963 track charts Frederick Hall still had a passenger station, a water tank, and a cattle pen (retired in place?). The passenger and freight depot was retired in September of 1968. The passing track was retired in 1971 and the house track in 1978. When I was there in the 1990’s, all that I could find was part of the station’s foundation.

Pictures


Drawing of the Frederick Hall Depot This drawing of the Frederick Hall Depot was graciously provided by Janice Abercrombie. Many thanks to her for sharing it.
Here’s part of the foundation of the Frederick Hall station. You can see where it widens for the bay window. Beyond that, the rest is missing. (1998 photo)
When I visited the area in June of 2010, someone apparently had replaced the missing portion of the foundation.
These photos show a much older depot at Frederick Hall. They were apparently taken to show off track maintenance equipment built by the Woolery Machine Company. I’ve seen a black and white photo of this station in the C&O Historical Society archives. Color versions are a real treat. (Photos from the collection of Peg Ocel. Used with permission.)

Map


This map was prepared from U.S.G.S. topological maps, C&O track charts dated 1963, C&O Side Track Records dated 1937, a copy of the Side Track Records updated through the 1990’s, and C&O Valuation maps, also updated through the 1990’s.

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