Guide to the Norfolk & Western Railway Reports and Papers, 1894-1994, undated

Summary Information

Title: Norfolk & Western Railway Reports and Papers, 1894-1994, undated
Collection: AC.441
Extent: 3.25 linear feetĀ (3 manuscript boxes, 1 half-sized manuscript box, 1 oversize box)

Norfolk and Western Railway Blueprints and Records include reports from the railway about construction, upgrades, and legal disputes; blueprints; individual and business receipts and invoices; and correspondence.

Creator: Norfolk and Western Railway Company.

Biographical/Historical Note

The Norfolk and Western Railway (reporting mark NW), was a US class I railroad, formed by more than 200 railroad mergers between 1838 and 1982. It was headquartered in Roanoke, Virginia for most of its 150-year existence. Its motto was Precision Transportation. The Norfolk and Western Railway formed as the Atlantic, Mississippi, & Ohio Railroad (AM & O) during a 1870 merger between Southside Railroad Company (1846), Norfolk & Petersburg (1849), Virginia & Tennessee Railroad (1849), and the proposed Virginia & Kentucky Railroad, which was never built. AM & O was sold at auction to C.H. Clark in 1881 and became Norfolk & Western. The Norfolk & Western Railway acquired Shenandoah Valley Railroad (1870) in 1890 and the Virginia Carolina, which was nicknamed the Virginia Creeper, in 1917. Norfolk & Western merged with Southern Railroad to form Norfolk Southern in the 1980s.

Scope and Contents

This collection includes 112 blueprints, correspondence (business and personal), reports and invoices for individuals, such as C.J. French of Narrows, Virginia and businesses, such as Maple Shade Inn, the Virginian Railway Company, and the Norfolk and Western Railway Company. These date 1894-1994.


This collection is arranged alphabetically by subject. Blueprints are housed in separate boxes and are arranged by number.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for use in the Dougherty Reading Room. An appointment for research is recommended. The Dougherty Reading Room is located on the 4th floor of Belk Library in Special Collections.

Acquisitions Information

This collection was purchased from Bookworm and Silverfish in three separate accessions (AC.2009.042, AC.2010.048, and AC.2010.060) between 2009 and 2010.

Processing Information

Processed by Anita Elliott, August 2013. Additions to the collection and updates to the finding aid completed by Cynthia Harbeson, October 2014. This collection was processed as part of a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. The grant funded extensive processing of the backlog within the W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection between 2012 and 2014.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], AC.441: Norfolk & Western Railway Blueprints and Records, W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University, Boone, North Carolina, USA.

Container List

Bills & Receipts, 1894-1916 Box 1, Folder 1
Blueprints [#1 - #112], 1916-1961
A detailed listing of the blueprints is available.
Boxes 3-5
Correspondence, 1910-1948 Box 1, Folder 2
Cost estimates, 1909-1929 Box 1, Folder 3
Cost estimates, 1928 Box 2, Folder 1
Ephemera, 1900-1994, undated Box 1, Folder 4
Legal documents, 1942 Box 1, Folder 5
Railroad car schematics, 1952-1956 Box 2, Folder 3
Reports, 1900-1949 Box 2, Folder 2
Reports, 1944-1945, undated Box 1, Folder 6