Online Originals: Construction workers discover old railroad tracks in Kinston

Online Originals

Recently, Hughes Construction company workers were shocked when they found old railroad tracks underneath the road at the intersection of Queen and Shine streets.

The intersection where the railroad tracks were discovered, as construction workers continue working on the project.

The construction workers were nearing the end of a city project in Kinston called the Queen Street Streetscape when they came across the tracks.

“There was a section missing where a sewer repair had been made in the center of the street, but other than that it was across the whole intersection.” 

– Charles Hughes , Charles Hughes Construction Owner on the length of the tracks

The project, which began in February, aims to provide new sidewalks and curbs as well as putting concrete down from Queen Street Bridge to railroad tracks at Blount Street.

A line can be seen underneath the road where the railroad tracks are. Charles Hughes, the owner of Hughes Construction, said the tracks appear well preserved.

After the discovery, locals and historians began investigating the story behind these tracks. The North Carolina Railroad Company was able to provide a link showing that the railroad was created in 1907 and formerly called the Kinston Carolina Railroad and Lumber Company.

The railroad continues past the road closed signs. Hughes said you can see a small curve in the road instead of it being straight. The curve is from the railroad in the middle.

Although it wasn’t a part of the North Carolina Railroad Company, the tracks covered 23 miles. Its services would start in Kinston and end in Pink Hill. Eventually, the tracks were discontinued in 1929.

At this time, no files or maps have been found for when the railroad was paved over, but Charles Hughes of Hughes Construction said it hasn’t slowed the project, which is set to be finished by early October.

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