The Christmas season is all about nostalgia and memories of Christmases past. This year’s Easter Seal ornament is one which sparks fond memories of fun times of many field trips for youngsters and method of travel for others. The Marianna and Blountstown Railroad, known as M & B Railroad sparks memories of days gone by in Jackson County.
For more than 60 years, from 1909 until 1972, the M & B Railroad ran between its namesake communities of Marianna and Blountstown. Constructed primarily to haul timber and wood products, before automobile travel became common place the railroad shuttled many passengers between Calhoun and Jackson Counties – even running special excursions trains to the West Florida Fair in Marianna. In its early years, the railroad linked the L & N rail line in Marianna with steamboats on the Apalachicola and Chipola Rivers.
The original 27-mile length of the railroad later was extended Southward to Scotts Ferry and across the Chipola River – to a total of 46 miles. At many locations, spur sawmills. In addition to hauling agricultural products, construction materials and manufactured goods until the 1960s the M & B also transported the U. S. Mail and Railway express parcels. Over the course of its lifetime, the railroad had a series of owners – beginning with the Pennington and Evans Company (Blountstown), the DuPont Trust (Wilmington, Delaware, J. C. Packard (Marianna), Oros and Verna Miller (Blountstown), George Tapper (Port St. Joe) and Joseph C. Bonanno (Essex Fells, New Jersey).
Today, the life and history of the shortline railroad are commemorated at the M & B Museum in Blountstown.
They can be purchased at Century 21 Sunny South Properties, 4630 Highway 90, Marianna. If you would like more information, please call (850)526-2891. Get your keepsake ornament while supplies last.