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O&A Railroad Tunnel - Wilkes Street, Alexandria, VA
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member robert
N 38° 47.997 W 077° 02.621
18S E 322528 N 4296560
Quick Description: Located at Wilkes Street in Old Town, Alexandria
Location: Virginia, United States
Date Posted: 9/21/2006 1:53:00 PM
Waymark Code: WMR24
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Blue J Wenatchee
Views: 334

Long Description:
The Orange & Alexandria was Chartered by the Legislature of the Commonwealth of Virginia on March 27, 1848 and was authorized to run from Gordonsville through Orange Court House and Culpeper Court House to Alexandria. Construction on the mainline began in 1850. On May 6, 1851 the engine 'Pioneer' ran from the north end of Union Street to the Wilkes Street tunnel in the city and on May 7, 1851 the inaugural run extended from the western edge of downtown Alexandria to the waterfront, a total of under 2 miles. The railroad reached Tudor Hall (present day Manassas) in 1851, Culpeper Court House by 1853, and joined the Virginia Central Railroad at Gordonsville in 1854. Construction along much of its alignment followed the old Piedmont stage route. In 1854 the O & A was granted permission by the general assembly to build southward from Charlottesville to Lynchburg. The O&A railroad reached Lynchburg in 1860 where it accessed the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad. Between Gordonsville and Charlottesville the O & A paid the Virginia Central for use of its tracks.
May 6, 1851 - The First train of the O&A, "Pioneer", rolls through Alexandria running from the north end of Union Street to the Wilkes Street Tunnel. There's also a virtual cache at this tunnel.
Construction: Brick or concrete block

Condition: Good

Rail Status: No

Current status: Recreation Path

Original Use: Freight

The "Other End": N 38° 47.988 W 077° 02.541

Tunnel Length: 380.00


Website: [Web Link]

Date Built: 1851

Date Abandoned: 1975

Suggested Parking Area: Not Listed

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