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Buckingham Branch Railroad

The Buckingham Branch Railroad (BB) is a family-owned short line railroad that operates 275 miles of railroad in central Virginia. The BB was founded in 1988 by Robert and Annie Bryant and ran its first train on March 6, 1989. Since then it has grown from a 17 mile line with two employees to its current size today of 275 miles with 88 employees. The Buckingham Branch has developed a reputation for dependability and service and its small size offers greater flexibility to respond to customer needs as well as providing more personalized customer service.

Buckingham Branch Railroad

Virginia shortline

The Buckingham Branch Railroad is a locally owned shortline in rural Buckingham County, Virginia. In 1989, the 17 mile former Chesapeake & Ohio branch line was purchased from the CSX. South to north, the lines begins at Dillwyn and ends at Bremo, Va, just across the James River at a CSX connection. Interchange with the CSX takes place via trackage rights at Strathmore. The BB also leases from CSX and operates a mainline segment from Richmond to Clifton Forge (via Charlottesville) which is approximately 200 miles long. This section is known as the Richmond & Alleghany Division.

Buckingham Branch system map / web


During my nine years of living in central Virginia, I enjoyed several trips over to rural Buckingham County to photograph and ride the Buckingham Branch Railroad. I made it to two of their annual May excursions (2004 and 2006) put on in conjunction with the Old Dominion Chapter of the NRHS; my brother-in-law and I rode in 2004, and dad and I made the 2006 trip together. As a fan of first generation diesel power, I was glad to get better acquanted with the BB and to see firsthand their great stable of factory Geeps and Seaboard Coast Line rebuilds. Seeing the well known Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac #101 in operation was a real treat as well. In 2004 it was the power on the excursion, but by 2006 it had been stripped down and prepared for repainting. The original Buckingham Branch branchline out of Dillwyn is a treat to ride: slow, meandering shorltine trackage through several interesting industrial sites ... finally culminating in a terrific overhead view of the muddy James River. Of course, the little BB became famous in the railfan world for taking on operation of the 200+ mile CSX subdivision between Richmond and Clifton Forge. I have yet to see this operation up close, but I'm impressed by any shortline that hosts regular Amtrak trains over its rails!

Links / Sources

This page was updated on 2015-12-24