Shiloh Battlefield, Pickwick Landing Dam, Railroad Action – 28 December 2007

by Jim on 2012/12/28

[Jimbaux visited the Lake of Fire, well, at least something terrible like it.]

This is Part 2 of a three-day journey that The Duke and Jimbaux took to northern Mississippi and western Tennessee in late December 2007; Part 1 can be seen here.

And Now For Something Completely Different

I have for you today something different, something that we must all view to remind ourselves to never do it again, or, perhaps, to remind ourselves that we are capable of doing awful things.  Today, I present to you images taken on 28 December 2007 of the Shiloh National Military Park, of the Pickwick Landing Dam, and of railroad action on the former Corinth & Counce Railway, the former GM&O Railway south of there, the former Southern Railway at Corinth, and the former Frisco Railway at Tupelo.

First, though, I have a brief “programming” announcement.

Mississippi, Memphis, and . . . Mexico?

One year to the day prior to these pictures being taken, I flew from New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, to Monterrey, Nuevo León, México.  That was the start of an epic 10-day journey in northern México in which I got numerous wonderful pictures and experiences, and I encourage you to please check out the compilation posts from that trip.  This trip to eastern Tennessee and northern Mississippi may seem anti-climactic, but I am grateful for it too.  I hope that you gain some benefit out of these pictures and stories too.

Shiloh – A Terrible Scene

We started the day on our way to Shiloh National Military Park, which The Duke wanted to visit and which was the main reason for the trip, though, like we so often do, we make plenty out of our travels.  Here is the bookstore at the welcome center.

Interesting it is to ponder the contrast between the peace and serenity of the present with the carnage that took place here and why it took place at all.

By “why,” I don’t mean the specific issue of control of the railroad junction at Corinth, Mississippi, which you will see today too, but the overall nature of human conflict, and ‘civil war’ in the United States, something of which the wild turkeys seen below are happily oblivious.

Regardless, it is part of our history, and we must take some time to remember it, honor it, and – most importantly – learn from it.

Below is seen the location of a Confederate burial pit.  There were so many killed that there was not time to dig individual graves.

Mother Nature surely has a way of making human endeavor seem insignificant, doesn’t she?

And the skunk crosses the road and then takes refuge in some leaves.

They are kind of cute creatures other than the stink, don’t you think?  Here is a monument to Louisiana infantrymen.

You should visit Shiloh.  You really should.

The Bloody Pond and The Peach Orchard

The NPS is growing peach trees here to match the peach trees that were here at the time of the battle.

Just adjacent to the Peach Orchard is what came to be known as Bloody Pond,  where wounded and dying men and horses sought water after the intensity of battle, many of them dying here, giving the pond a blood red tinge.

This pond was not an easy place to visit, and that’s exactly why you should go there.

You can see the Peach Orchard in the background in the above picture.  Thinking of what transpired here on that terrible day was unsettling.

Unfortunately, so many people won’t think of coming here, choosing instead to spend their travel time on the beach or the casino.

The Tennessee River

Here’s where some of the soldiers landed on the Tennessee River.

We left the battlefield.  We did not stay long, but we got plenty out of our visit, and I hope that you got plenty out of our visit too.  Now, it was time to visit other places.

A Dam Diversion

Now, it was time to visit briefly the Pickwick Landing Dam, which is part of the Tennessee Valley Authority.

I guess you can call that number if you see something suspicious, right?  Like, someone taking pictures of the dam?  Fortunately, that didn’t happen today.

I had no idea that a year-and-a-half after this visit that I’d visit via a private tour the TVA headquarters in Chattanooga!

For now, though, I was visiting the western part of the state of Tennessee for the first time.

Now, it was time to go on that bridge.

Yes, The Duke was doing the driving when these two picture were made.

He was leading me, per my request, to a destination of railroad lore, if you want to call it that.


I had heard about the Corinth & Counce Railway for many years, especially seeing its boxcars.  Today, it is part of the Kansas City Southern Railway, and I’m just reading on the Wikipedia entry that the railroad was built as late as 1958, which I found to be interesting and odd.  It remains in Counce to serve the PCA mill there.

I’d love to have gotten a regular train on the line between Corinth and Counce, but such was not to be.  So, you and I will just have to live with these results from Counce, Tennessee.

That’s that, my friends.  Now, it’s time for food!

I seem to remember that I got the Subway Melt or maybe a pizza and that The Duke got the sweet onion chicken teriyaki, but don’t put money on that (and there’s no way to prove it anyway.)

Regardless, it was at this point that we turned south and rather deliberately headed for home, even though we’d spend the night in northern Mississippi.


Now, we get to the railroad junction town of Corinth, Mississippi, and remember that it was this junction over which the Battle of Shiloh was specifically fought.  Here’s an old GM&O caboose that has been preserved.

The GM&O was surely an interesting railroad.  Much of its trackage is gone today, but much of its trackage survives today, parts of it owned by KCS and other parts of it owned by the Canadian National Railway, including the line between Bogalusa, Louisiana, and Wanilla, Mississippi.

Read more about the GM&O at Wikipedia.

The Junction

Here is the railroad junction over which the Battle of Shiloh was fought miles away.

In the foreground in this roughly northward view, you see today’s KCS, and in the background, you see today’s Norfolk Southern Railway line to Memphis across the background, the latter being far busier.  Until I read the aforelinked Wikipedia entry on the Corinth & Counce Railway and that that railroad was built long after the Civil War, I had thought that lines extended from Corinth in four directions during that time.  So, perhaps there was no diamond then as there is in this picture now.  From here, KCS’s line goes south to Tupelo, Artesia, and to Meridian where it connects with its own east-west Meridian Speedway line (which you saw in yesterday’s post) as well as the NS’s line to New Orleans.  See NS’s system map for more information.

Here’s a look southward on the KCS.

Then, we hear “397” over the radio.  Well, look at this!  It’s NS train 397 approaching!

The 397 is a solid interchange train bound for interchange with the Canadian National Railway in Memphis.

Let’s a have a couple of more looks at the KCS before we roll out of town for points south.

I’d love to be able to spend more time here sometime.

Okay, now it’s time to get out of town and keep going south.


Yes, we stopped briefly in Tupelo.  We caught the tail end of this BNSF coal train going across the KCS diamond.

The Duke laughed at me when I grimaced at the KCS crew and dispatcher referring to “Saltillo” as if it was supposed to be pronounced like it rhymes with “pillow.”  No!  That’s not how to say it, dammit!!  Anyway, I think that it was this road switcher crew at Tupelo.

Do you see the milepost on the bridge?  This location is 278 miles from where?


We went to sleep in Starkville after visiting a great artist in the area.  There will be a little bit more to come tomorrow as we go home to bayouland.  Are you enjoying this trip?


{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 PPA (the Mid City Marine) December 28, 2012 at 12:28

Very interesting monument to the Crescent Regiment, raised in New Orleans (I forget his name now). The commander of this regiment has a nice memorial tomb in the Lafayette Cemetery, in the Garden District across the street from the world-famous Commander’s Palace restaurant. The tomb is located near the western entrance on Sixth Street. I have pics if anyone would like to see.


2 Miceal Tyre December 28, 2012 at 15:57

Trust me James, if i am ever in the state I will visit Shiloh. I have an enduring fascination of the Civil War your nation endured. As someone with Irish blood (in my Scottish veins) the Irish also suffered a bloody Civil War. They are always the same. Families torn in two and maiming and killing. As you say, we need to learn from these events and not repeat.


3 Ray Duplechain December 28, 2012 at 20:39

Great report, two of my favoite subjects; Railroading and Civil War. Good job…


4 Angeline December 28, 2013 at 12:46

Nice pics! Thanks for the mini history lesson. I don’t know a lot about American history, and very little about the Civil War.
I like your choice of music for this post, although unfortunately the link no longer works.


5 Jimbaux December 28, 2013 at 12:54

Thanks for the alert! I should check the links before I reshare old posts. I have replaced it with one that works.


6 Donna Jackson December 29, 2014 at 20:59

If you ever need a driver,, call me.


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