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Antique Central of Georgia Railway COFGARR Railroad Brass Ring Barrel Switch Key
This is an older hollow barrel switch key from the Central of Georgia Railway. It is an early key with two rings incised around the upper end of the barrel and serif Roman letter stamping.
It is stamped C OF GA RR on one side of the bow, and on the other is what appears to be H 201. There is no maker mark, but we confirmed the bit cut in our Knous price guide.
Condition is very good overall -- terrific color with great patina and just the right amount of wear without any thin metal at the end of the barrel. The ONLY issue we have is that the bow has been disfigured -- apparently from use during service. PLEASE SEE OUR PICTURES.
There are deep scratches on both sides of the bow across some of the stamping, but it's clear and obvious that C OF GA RR is what is underneath on the front. On the back, it's definitely H 20, with the "1" at the end being questionable.
Central of Georgia keys are difficult to come by - especially any as old as this one. It would be superb in a collection until a better one comes along -- for which there may be quite a wait !
THE CENTRAL OF GEORGIA Railroad got its start in 1833 as the Central Rail Road and Canal Company, which shortly afterwards changed its name to Central Rail Road and Banking Company of Georgia, in hopes of increasing its appeal to investors. The plan was to connect with the Macon & Western Railroad at Macon, Georgia, and run to Savannah which would create a rail link from Chattanooga, on the Tennessee River, to seaports on the Atlantic Ocean. After mergers and acquisitions, the company went bankrupt. Three years later in 1895, it was reorganized as the Central of Georgia Railway, which expanded and prospered until the early 1900s.
In 1932, during the Great Depression, the C of GA went into receivership, from which it did not emerge until 1948. In 1956, the St. Louis-San Francisco Railway (“Frisco”), seeking a route to Atlantic Ocean ports, gained control of the CofG, but the U.S. Interstate Commerce Commission declined to approve a merger of the two roads, so the Frisco sold its CofG stock to the Southern Railway in 1963, turning it into Southern subsidiary. In 1971, the Southern formed the Central of Georgia Railroad to merge the Central of Georgia Railway, the Savannah & Atlanta Railway and the Wrightsville & Tennille Railroad. Today the Central of Georgia exists only as a "paper railroad" within the Norfolk Southern Railway group.
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