Up ] Mount Airy ] Ararat ] Pilot Mountain ] Pinnacle ] Dalton ] King ] Rural Hall ] Germanton ] Walnut Cove ] Belews Creek ] Stokesdale and Madison Branch ] Summerfield ] Greensboro ] Pleasant Garden ] Climax and Ramseur Branch ] Julian ] Liberty ] Staley ] Siler City ] Ore Hill ] Bonlee ] Bear Creek ] Goldston ] Gulf ] [ Cumnock ] Sanford ]

Atlantic & Yadkin Railway

History &


Cumnock (milepost CF 123.6)


This community is located in northwest Lee County at an altitude of 259 feet.

The community was named Egypt because large crops of corn produced in the area brought buyers from outside as in the Biblical story of Joseph.  Post office name changed to Cumnock in 1895 for an official of the mine.

The photo (click on thumbnail to view larger image) shows the small combination station, housing both the freight room, agent's office and passenger waiting area as it was in 1916-20 era. The station was designated a "type 3" by the ICC Valuation engineer.  It was 65' x 30' with a 4' wide platform on ends and 3' wide platform along sides. Exterior walls were board and batten and the roof (overhang of 42" on sides and 24" at ends) had metal shingles in 1916. The platform decking was 2" and the side boards reaching up 2' from ground were 1" wide and vertically placed. The passenger station interior had 7/8" tongue and groove flooring and walls. The fireplace had a plain wood mantle. Freight side had plank floor and 1" boards lining walls up to 4'.  It was  built in 18xx according to the ICC valuation engineering reports.



Track Diagram  

wpe3.gif (164857 bytes)




A Southern Railway Shippers Guide from 1916 indicates the following industries were located in Cumnock and using the A&Y for delivering and receiving products by rail (although some may have used the station or team track rather than having a dedicated siding). I will add other industries as I receive information about them:


Goods Shipped/Rec'd

Company Name

brick factory kiln-burned brick Goldston Brick Co.
cotton gin cotton Egypt Imp. Co.
flour and grist mill corn meal Egypt Imp. Co.
livestock cattle Egypt Imp. Co.
sawmill pine and oak rough Egypt Imp. Co.
sawmill pine and oak rough J.R. Burns
sawmill pine and oak rough Gough & Arnold Bros.
sawmill pine and oak rough Henry Shaw
sawmill pine and oak rough W. H. Gilmore
sawmill pine and oak rough J. M. Wilcox



Odds and Ends

dalton_dwelling_1 (36986 bytes)

Dalton dwelling #1 pictured here was similar to dwelling in Cumnock.

Around the station were two employee dwellings similar to those at Dalton. Dwelling #1 was at "type 12" sized 25'x36' with a porch, lean-to in back,  lapped siding, and double hung plain windows. Dwelling #2 was "identical to dwelling #2 at Dalton.  In addition, the ICC field engineer noted a well, chicken house, corn crib, hog pen, and scrap bin. A tool house was supposed to be there, but was not evident to the engineer and he assumed it was removed. Images are photos of Dalton dwellings by ICC valuation engineer. dalton_dwelling_2 (37162 bytes)

Dalton dwelling #2 pictured here was identical to dwelling #2 in Cumnock.

cumnock_egypt_coal_mine_sign.jpg (5183 bytes)


The Egypt coal mine operated from 1855 until 1928 and supplied coal for Confederate blockade runners.  In addition to the coal mine, there was an iron works. Click on thumbnail to right to see details of the coal mine.




The A&Y tracks at Cumnock had a capacity for 14 cars as of 1943.   Near Cumnock, the A&Y crossed the Deep River on it's way to Sanford.  

Here are photos from both sides of a road bridge showing the approach (left) and the crossing of the river on a through truss bridge (right). In the left photo is a scrap carrying gondola destined for Sanford on the siding, probably dropped off by the Aberdeen Carolina & Western (took over part of old Norfolk Southern tracks).  I'm not completely sure where that switch leads in the right hand photo but the track should be a connection with the ACW. The ACW has a similar bridge less than100 yards to the left of the bridge in this picture.  That would explain the gon there too.





The corn that attracted all those buyers to "Egypt" must still be produced.  There are quite a few active and abandoned feed mills in this area.   Left  is a shot of the huge Gold Kist chicken feed mill in Cumnock. I have no idea if this is serviced by rail, though it is certainly big enough, and it is visible from the road bridge where I took the above photos.


The final shot here is not actually taken in Cumnock but between this town and Sanford. It is the only good trestle photo I was able to take and wanted to make sure it got on the website. It's trestles like this that limited the A&Y to lighter motive power.  During the steam era, Consolidations (2-8-0 wheel arrangement) were the heaviest power used on the line. Even after the Southern took over and used diesels, there were restrictions on speed and size of locomotives.


If you have any information regarding the history of Cumnock, NC, please contact me.



This website is copyrighted 1998-2016 by David M. Bott.  Images appearing on this website may be protected by U.S. Copyright Law, donor restrictions, and other rights or policies. The Railroad Roman font used in the title was bought from Ben Coifman. Persons who contemplate copying and using font or images should obtain all necessary permissions pertaining to use. Authorization to use images credited to the North Carolina Collection, University of N.C. Library at Chapel Hill should be sought from the Collection at CB#3934, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27514-8890. Telephone 919-962-7992. Images credited to the North Carolina State Library Photo Archives are considered in the public domain.  Images credited to others or unknown are subject to copyright restrictions and permission for use should be obtained.

This page  last edited Tuesday, November 08, 2016