Mendota Trail history is something that comes up in conversations often. Our Mendota Trail community sometimes offers photographs or bits of history of the Mendota Trail such as this one that shows a Norfolk & Western train headed up the gorge. Look closely! You’ll see the water tower where the train stopped and took on additional water to ensure adequate steam power for the steep incline of the gorge. Today the tower is gone, but we can still see bits of its infrastructure.
Unfortunately, I do not know who to credit for this photograph. If you know, please comment so we can give credit.
The train pictured above is not the one in the article below. However, since the photograph was taken in Phillips near Curve 21, it sets the stage for the article. It’s also timely as there is so much trestle restoration activity currently going on in the gorge.
Taken from The Big Stone Gap Post dated July 30, 1929.
SOUTHERN FREIGHT TRAIN IS WRECKED
Engineer R.P. Mullins Is Slightly Injured Near Mendota, Va.