Clinton, SC

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Posted by D.Carleton on Monday, September 13, 2010 10:25 PM

Since I was headed in that general direction I decided to get a 'boots-on-the-ground' look at Clinton, SC.  On the map Clinton looks like a great spot to spend the day watching and photographing the action.  Even on a Sunday there was plenty to look at with multiple coal trains (with DPUs) in just the few hours I was there as well as merchandise trains.  The problem is that Route 76 follows the tracks closely... too closely.  In town there are too many obstructions, i.e. poles and highway signage, in the way of any photography.  Outside of  town the there is not enough room between the road and the railroad for a decent shot.  East of town near a special needs medical center is the junction where the lines split.  At this point the line is well away from the track and may make for good location for a 'railfan park' someday.  For now there is a public parking lot in town near the site of former station.  It is north of the tracks and not suited to photography.  If you want to sit back and read a book while watching the trains go by then this is adequate. 

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  • From: Spartanburg, SC
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Posted by GP-9_Man11786 on Friday, August 6, 2010 10:30 AM

As part of a project for work, I am creating a railfan guide to South Carolina. There are two spots in Clinton:

  • Dover Connector: This is where the CSX’s former Columbia, Newberry & Laurens line meet the former Seaboard Air Line from Hamlet, NC. The junction can be viewed by Following Boulevard W across the tracks and pull into the large grassy area. This is a junction and many trains come through the area.
  • Clinton Connection: US 76 allows ample viewing of both above-mentioned lines throughout the town of Clinton. There is ample parking and services in the area. There is a small public park adjoining the tracks off of SC Route 72. Public parking is available also. This is where the SAL and CNL lines split.

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Posted by Deggesty on Monday, July 5, 2010 10:02 PM

The Silver Comet (33 & 34) more or less replaced the Cotton States Special, and the Cotton Blossom (5 & 6) replaced the Robert E. Lee. In the last 10-15 years of its operation, 5 & 6 had no name. There was also 3 & 4, which was an overnight mail train between Hamlet and Atlanta, with varying through cars to/from Washington and/or Richmond.


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Posted by CORNELIUSSEON on Thursday, July 1, 2010 10:39 PM

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Clinton has two intersecting lines that have interesting passenger histories. Both of them are now operated for freight by CSX.


Running roughly Northwest to Southeast is the line between Laurens and Columbia, SC, which once was the Columbia, Newberry and Laurens Railroad, while the other was the Wilmington to Bessimer Line of the Seaboard Air Line Railroad, which had two Named passenger trains, (Trains #5 & 6, the Robert E. Lee between Washington, DC and Birmingham, Alabama, which had through cars for New York, Atlanta) and (Trains 9/107 & 10/108 the Cotton States Special between Washington and Birmingham, with through cars for New York, Portsmouth, Norlina, Atlanta, Hamlet, and Greenwood). This train was interesting in that it advertised in the Official Guide that it had “Colored” Coaches between Hamlet and Birmingham and between Portsmouth and Norlina.


The C, N & L RR had a pair of Mixed trains which ran 7 days per week. Both lines have significant Freight service these days, with the C, N&L Line connecting with the Ex- Charleston & Western Carolina RY at Laurens.



Tags: CSX
  • Member since
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Clinton, SC
Posted by Railfan1 on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 5:28 PM

Can anyone give me some info on railfanning the Clinton, SC area? Any info and train frequency would be appreciated. Thanks.

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