Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad

Incorporated on January 13, 1832, the Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad was a railroad in Alabama, the United States.

Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad
LocaleNorth Alabama
Dates of operation1832–1850
SuccessorMemphis and Charleston Railroad
Track gauge5 ft (1,524 mm)

The Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad ran from Decatur in Morgan County through the northern half of Lawrence County through Courtland, then into Colbert County and ended in Tuscumbia, Alabama where it connected to the Tuscumbia Railway Company.[1]

Construction began in mid-1832, the first segment between Tuscumbia and Leighton was completed in November of that year. Traffic between those two cities began at the day of completion. The second segment between Leighton and Decatur was completed in June 1834.[2]

Construction was speedy because of the large cotton industry in North Alabama. Barges could not pass through the rapids caused by the Shoals along the Tennessee River between Florence, and Decatur. The Shoals Canal was congested and the state pursued funding for a railroad between The Shoals and the calmer waters in Decatur.[1]

In 1850 it was incorporated into the Memphis and Charleston Railroad which eventually merged into the Southern Railway, a predecessor of Norfolk Southern. The line is still operated by Norfolk Southern Railway and serves as a vital railroad link between The Shoals, and the city of Decatur.

See also



  1. ^ a b Sherrod, Phillip. "The Tuscumbia, Courtland & Decatur Railway". Wheeler Plantation. Archived from the original on March 23, 2010. Retrieved June 13, 2010.
  2. ^ "Our History". The Official Website of the City of Tuscumbia, Alabama. 2003. Archived from the original on December 23, 2009. Retrieved June 13, 2010.