Posts Tagged ‘transportation’

Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Portsmouth, Independent Cities, Virginia, Sanborn Map Company, February 1898

Seaboard Airline R. R. Station and Main Offices, Portsmouth, Va. (postcard, circa 1930-1945)


“The Seaboard Coastline Building, a prominent landmark situated on the Portsmouth waterfront, has stood for nearly a century as a major symbol of rail transportation and land-and-sea commerce to the harbor city of Portsmouth, Virginia. Erected in 1894-95 and enlarged in 1914, the structure served as the northern terminus and office headquarters of the Seaboard Air Line until 1956. The significance of the railroad and, in particular, this northern terminal, to the commerce and industry of the region is indisputable: The Seaboard Air Line Railroad transported much of the vast southern cotton crop to the Portsmouth terminal, exchanging for fertilizer and other manufactured products from the north. The railroad provided access to the rich coalfields of West Virginia, the steel industry as far south as Birmingham, Alabama, and the fruit and produce groves of Florida. The strategic siting of the terminal and warehouses along the Portsmouth harbor provided a critical link to the north-south internal shipping route extending from New York to South Carolina, as well as a familiar landmark to the passenger ferries approaching from the neighboring harbors of Norfolk and Newport News.”
National Register of Historic Places — Nomination Form — Seaboard Coastline Building — Portsmouth, Virginia — 124-0053

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“Steam Collier”

“Steam Collier” by Alfred R. Waud

“Steamer:  Any relatively small, steam-powered decked vessel, usually confined to rivers and other inland waters. Steamers were first used for river transport in North Carolina but were still uncommon at the advent of the Civil War.”

David Cecelski. The Waterman’s Song: Slavery and Freedom in Maritime North Carolina, Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2001, page 220.

A collier is is a cargo vessel designed to transport coal.

“The most dramatic expansion of the American coal industry occurred in the late antebellum decades but the outbreak of the Civil War led to some major changes. The fuel needs of the federal army and navy, along with their military suppliers, promised a significant increase in the demand for coal. Mine operators planned for rising, or at least stable, coal prices for the duration of the war. Their expectations proved accurate. Even when prices are adjusted for wartime inflation, they increased substantially over the course of the conflict. Over the years 1860 to 1863, the real (i.e., inflation-adjusted) price of a ton of anthracite rose by over thirty percent, and in 1864 the real price had increased to forty-five percent above its 1860 level. In response, the production of coal increased to over twelve million tons of anthracite and over twenty-four million tons nationwide by 1865.”

Sean Patrick Adams. “The U.S. Coal Industry in the Nineteenth Century”
https:// eh.net/encyclopedia/the-us-coal-industry-in-the-nineteenth-century-2/
accessed February 24, 2019

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