The Railroads of U.S. Sugar

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The Railroads of U.S. Sugar: History Through the Miles by Dr. Barton Jennings

The United States Sugar Corporation owns and operates two different railroad operations in the Lake Okeechobee area of South Florida. One is the South Central Florida Express, a shortline railroad that operates between Sebring and Fort Pierce, Florida. This railroad includes track once owned by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, and trackage leased from the Florida East Coast Railway. This route hauls tens of thousands of railcars annually for about two dozen shippers, plus even more carloads of sugarcane for U.S. Sugar.

The second railroad operation is a series of lines that directly serve the miles of sugarcane fields in the area. These private industrial lines make up the heart of the U.S. Sugar rail operations, and are often the mysterious element of any visit to the Clewiston area.

Both sets of lines can have dozens of daily train movements during the winter sugarcane harvest season. A large fleet of clean and modern diesel locomotives are used to move these trains, which often consist of some of the approximately 800 cane cars that are unique to the system.

The start of the construction of these lines took place almost 100 years ago, but new rail lines are still being built and completed. This book is written for those who want to know more about the various railroad routes owned and operated by the United States Sugar Corporation. It provides a history of the sugar company and the various rail lines, plus a detailed guide of each route, helping to answer the questions of “Where are we and what once happened here?”

Enjoy this review of the railroads of U.S. Sugar, a unique opportunity to experience the history of the Lake Okeechobee and South Florida areas.

This is the 13th book in the History Through the Miles series.

ISBN: 978-1-7327888-7-9

Retail price: $29.99

Available through Amazon, Ron's Books, Ingram, and your local bookstore.