“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Fairlawn in Pulaski County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Roads West

Roads West Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, May 30, 2011
1. Roads West Marker
Inscription. During the 1770s, Samuel Pepper established a ferry crossing nearby which opened a transportation, route during the late colonial and early national periods linking the resources of the West with the population centers in the East. A century later, the Norfolk & Western Railroad designed a route through this part of the New River Valley, thereby providing access to vast coalfields near Flat Top Mountain. In 1899, the Pepper’s Ferry Bridge and Tunnel were completed to circumvent a bend in the New River. Now known as the Cowan Tunnel, it retains the original stone-faced portal on the west side.
Erected 2009 by Department of Historic Resources. (Marker Number K-44.)
Location. 37° 9.636′ N, 80° 33.227′ W. Marker is near Fairlawn, Virginia, in Pulaski County. Marker is on Peppers Ferry Road near the New River Bridge (Virginia Route 114), on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Radford VA 24141, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Montgomery County / Pulaski County (here, next to this marker); Radford (approx. 1.4 miles away); Lovely Mount Baptist Church
Roads West Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, May 30, 2011
2. Roads West Marker
(approx. 1.7 miles away); Starnes (approx. 1.9 miles away); The New River (approx. 1.9 miles away); a different marker also named Montgomery County / Pulaski County (approx. 1.9 miles away); Wildwood Pool (approx. 1.9 miles away); Connelly's Run (approx. 2.1 miles away).
Regarding Roads West. Norfolk Southern raised the ceiling on the Cowan Tunnel and 27 other tunnels and removed 24 overhead obstacles—completing this work in 2010—to allow for double-stacked freight trains to travel between the Port of Virginia in Norfolk and Columbus Ohio and other points in the Midwest.

During the early and mid 20th century, The Norfolk & Western Railroad’s Norfolk to Cincinnati passenger trains ran through this tunnel, including the Powhatan Arrow and the Cavalier. The Tennessean from Washington to Memphis, operated jointly with the Southern Railway, also ran through this tunnel.
Categories. Railroads & Streetcars
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 5, 2011, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 487 times since then and 19 times this year. Last updated on July 26, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on June 5, 2011, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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