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Bulloch History by Roger Allen
Dublin to Tybee for only $1.75
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    Note: The following is the third part of a four-part series on the expansion of rail service in Bulloch County.
In 1888, the beginnings of what would become the Oconee Branch of the Central of Georgia Railway (CGA) took place. It all started when the Macon Construction Company got charters to build three railroads, one of which was the Macon and Atlantic Railroad (M&A). The M&A had laid 12 miles of rails heading from the town of Bruton in Laurens County eastward before it went into receivership in 1894.
    It was then reorganized into what was called the Atlantic Short Line Railway (ASL), which continued building the line, but itself went into receivership after completing the rails another 16 miles to Covena. Once again, the railway was reorganized, this time becoming the Brewton and Pineora Railway (B&P) in 1897. The B&P, it turns out, was owned and operated by the CGA which had bought the ASL rights in 1895.
    The B&P line started in Brewton, where it connected with the Wrightsville and Tennille Railroad, and extended as far as Stillmore in Emanuel County, where it connected with the Stillmore Air Line Railway and the Millen and Southern Railway. After building another 28 miles of track, the railroad finally reached Statesboro. The 67 miles of the B&P line was finally purchased outright by the CGA for $372,000 in 1901.
    In 1889 another railroad was started up, this time known as the Dover and Statesboro Railroad (D&S). It extended ten miles from Statesboro to the town of Dover across the Ogeechee River. Major and Captain Burkhalter (father and son) soon sold their line to Augustan George Curry. The CGA purchased the D&S in 1901 for some $72,000, and then combined the B&P and the D&S into what they referred to as the “Dublin to Dover Branch” or the “Oconee Branch” of the CGA.
    Passengers were able to travel all the way, with no changes, from Dublin right to the steps of the Tybrissa Pavilion on Tybee Island for a round trip fare of only $1.75. The CGA also ran the popular “Shoo Fly Express”, a round trip passenger train which left Savannah in the morning, arriving in Statesboro in the afternoon. It would leave early the next morning for Savannah, arriving in the mid-day.

Roger Allen is a local lover of history. Allen provides a brief look at Bulloch County's historical past. E-mail Roger at roger
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