1943 L&N Railroad Coaling Tower On State Line Is Demolished (With Photo Gallery)

July 28, 2022

A bit of railroad history on the Alabama-Florida line is no more.

A former L&N Railroad coaling tower along the CSX tracks in Flomaton was demolished this week by CSX. The concrete tower was built in 1943 and was located on the eastern side of the railyard in Flomaton.

For a photo gallery of the Flomaton L&N coaling tower, click here.

Elevated coaling towers were large bunkers that stood above the tracks to load coal into steam locomotives.

NorthEscambia.com reached out to the CSX media team to find out why the tower was brought down, but we received no response.

Pictured: A 1943 L&N Railroad coaling tower on the Alabama-Florida line in Flomaton, Alabama, as seen July 16, 2022. The top photo shows the size of the structure as CSX engines pass underneath. The bottom photo shows electric wind turbines passing under the coal tower. NorthEscambia.com photos, click to enlarge.


19 Responses to “1943 L&N Railroad Coaling Tower On State Line Is Demolished (With Photo Gallery)”

  1. D.B. on August 10th, 2022 1:45 pm

    Wow, almost 80 years old, wow!
    Nothing built these days will ever last that long! Items these days are built to fail so the companies can make more money sooner!

  2. David Eisman on July 29th, 2022 7:41 pm

    For those who say let go of the past I say have respect for the artisanship of the past. You simply don’t see the kind of artistry present on the coaling tower with the fancy script L&N logo that is now lost. Modern architecture is too modular, cheap nondescript and not built to last. I will miss that coaling tower and it’s logo that copied the logo on the L&N passenger steam locomotives. This logo was slightly different from the standard logo L& N logo used for correspondence and advertising.

  3. B. F.JACKSON III on July 29th, 2022 2:33 pm

    I think a similar coaling tower remains in the old “Operations &Maintainance,Servicing area for the Montgomery Steam locomotives that were here.

  4. B. F.JACKSON III on July 29th, 2022 2:29 pm

    The L&N RR certainly built these structures solidly and too last for many years of service; I think there is one huge concrete tower remaining in Montgomery Al. in North Montgomery east of North Court St. location of the “Operations” railroad yards where maintenance and servicing of the steam locomotives was performed in big railroad shop buildings.

  5. Oversight on July 29th, 2022 7:50 am

    Economics 101 – Obsolescence. It is no longer needed because of advances in technology and engineering. Sing it, Elsa, “Let it Go, Let it Go.”

  6. RaD on July 28th, 2022 11:09 pm

    @John Doe – Agreed

  7. John Doe on July 28th, 2022 4:18 pm

    It’s funny to hear people complain that society is erasing the past. You do realize that nature cares not for the past and erases a little bit of history every single second of your existence. Humans are they only ones who seem fixated on the past. The rest of the world just moves forward.

  8. Sad on July 28th, 2022 2:17 pm

    So sad!! Our BEAUTIFUL Depot was torn down and it could have been a beautiful part of history! Now the only other thing left to remind us of how busy little old Flomaton was a booming town. On weekends you couldn’t find a parking place in town. I loved that old coal tower! It was not far from where I grew up! Sooo sad

  9. Derek on July 28th, 2022 12:30 pm

    Another piece of Railroad history gone by way
    Of the dinosaur

  10. Derek on July 28th, 2022 12:18 pm

    Another piece of Americana gone. The L&N Railroad built the southland

  11. Oak Grove Bud on July 28th, 2022 10:56 am

    Sorry to see this. I follow a guy on YouTube who travels the freight trains all over the country. He has a YouTube episode in Thurman West Virginia describing the coaling tower there. He mentions the tower in Flomaton Alabama in his video. He goes by the name Hoboshoestring.

  12. Railroader wife on July 28th, 2022 10:07 am

    They tore it down because sometimes trains are carrying stuff to big to go threw them , one train hit one up north so they are trying to prevent that here .(Railroader wife)

  13. Katie F on July 28th, 2022 9:40 am

    Just another piece of history destroyed by a society that is trying to rewrite our past. I know my Papa Findley worked many days at the Flomaton Depot and so many others in Flomaton, AL. So THANKFUL for pictures, they will always tell the history, even whey our minds fail us.

  14. Molino Mom on July 28th, 2022 9:23 am

    My grandfather retired from L&N. I wish I’d have known about this I would’ve loved to have taken some pictures before they demolish yet another history icon.
    Somebody probably complained about the color of the bricks – thats all it takes these days, well for some anyway.

  15. tg on July 28th, 2022 8:47 am

    Dont make stuff like they did in the past.

  16. Me on July 28th, 2022 8:06 am

    How Sad! Great photos!

  17. sam on July 28th, 2022 7:45 am

    DANG! i have always looked down the tracks when going over the over pass to look at it. as a little boy it amazed me. i hate that it is gone. the old depot was a beautiful building and they tore it down, now this. SAD.

  18. David Huie Green on July 28th, 2022 3:45 am

    I was always impressed with how well it endured, always checked to be sure it was still there. Now it isn’t.

  19. Just saying on July 28th, 2022 2:25 am

    Pics and memories all that’s left of what was once a grand depot.

    This was the last remnant. Now it’s gone too.

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