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Reidsville in Rockingham County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Piedmont Railroad

Flight of Jefferson Davis

 
 
Piedmont Railroad Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, February 4, 2013
1. Piedmont Railroad Marker
Inscription.  
The Piedmont Railroad, chartered in 1862, linked Danville, Virginia, with Greensboro, North Carolina. Work began on the road that autumn in Danville, but wartime labor and supply shortages impeded progress on the 48-mile-long line, which did not extend here to Reidsville until late in 1863. Passenger service between the two towns began on December 21, and the railroad was completed to Greensboro in May 1864. For the remainder of the war it was a vital supply line from North Carolina to Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia.

In 1865, the community here consisted of a few houses and a store containing a post office established in 1829 by future governor David S. Reid. By the 1850s, Joseph Holderby and his son-in-law William Lindsey owned much of the property here. Holderby laid out a town that he named Reidsville after he learned of the planned railroad; he sold a few lots, but the town did not prosper. Reidsville did become the county collection point for Confederate taxes, however, and Holderby served as collector for tax district 35.

It was along this route on the morning of April 11, 1865, that the train carrying
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Confederate President Jefferson Davis and his cabinet rolled from Danville to Greensboro after Lee’s surrender at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, two days earlier. The present Norfolk Southern Railway follows the historic route of the Piedmont Railroad. Reidsville grew quickly after the war and was incorporated in 1873. A Confederate monument was erected several blocks northwest of here in 1910.

( Sidebar : )
After passing through Reidsville, Jefferson Davis and his dwindling entourage continued through North and South Carolina to Georgia, where U.S. cavalry captured him near Irwinsville on May 10, 1865. Davis was incarcerated at Fort Monroe, Virginia, until his release on May 13, 1867.
 
Erected by North Carolina Civil War Trails.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Railroads & StreetcarsWar, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the North Carolina Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical date for this entry is April 11, 1865.
 
Location. 36° 21.516′ N, 79° 39.737′ W. Marker is in Reidsville, North Carolina, in Rockingham County. Marker is at the intersection of SE Market Street and Lawsonville Avenue, on the left when traveling south on SE Market Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 321 SE Market Street, Reidsville NC 27320, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At
Piedmont Railroad Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, February 4, 2013
2. Piedmont Railroad Marker
least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Governor Reid House (within shouting distance of this marker); David S. Reid (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); First Baptist Church (about 700 feet away); Saint Paul United Methodist Church (about 700 feet away); Booker T. Washington High School (approx. 0.4 miles away); Alfred M. Scales (approx. 2˝ miles away); First Public School in N.C. (approx. 3.6 miles away); Glenn T. Settle (approx. 4.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Reidsville.
 
More about this marker. The background of the marker contains a map of the Piedmont Railroad with Civil War Trail Sites indicated. At the bottom right is a portrait of President Jefferson Davis.
 
Piedmont Railroad Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, February 4, 2013
3. Piedmont Railroad Marker
The present-day railroad can be seen across the street from the marker.
Piedmont Railroad Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Coughlin, February 4, 2013
4. Piedmont Railroad Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on February 6, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 629 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on February 6, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.

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Apr. 13, 2024