Most People Have No Idea This Hundred-Year-Old Underwater Train Wreck In North Carolina Even Exists
What’s a day at the lake look like to you? Perhaps you’re boating, swimming, fishing, or camping? You name it and Kerr Lake has it! But did you know the lake also sports what just may be the only underwater train wreck in North Carolina?
Impounded in 1952 upon the completion of the John H. Kerr Dam, Kerr Lake is an outdoor lover's paradise. But long before it was Kerr Lake it was the Roanoke River and a few smaller tributaries.
And once upon a time, a train and two attached train cars broke through the bottom of a train trestle crossing the Roanoke River and fell directly into the water below - where it still remains, at what is now the bottom of Kerr Lake.
Estimations from Bridgehunter.com place the engine and its two accompanying cars at this point in Kerr Lake sunken approximately 50 feet below the surface.
Little is known about the Roanoke River Line, other than right after the accident it was acquired by the Townville Line.
Some sources say the man standing on the right side of the deck in the above image was the engineer who was driving the train at the time of the accident.
Both he and his brother were the only people on the train. Reportedly, neither survived the accident.
So what happened? Why did the train break the trestle and plummet into the Roanoke River?
The year was 1918 and this particular trestle was constructed of wood.
There had been a fire on the banks of the Roanoke River and the trestle had gotten scorched, weakening its stability. But the engineer had yet to be advised of the situation.
So when the train hit the trestle as it began to cross the river, it simply fell right through the structure and crashed into the river.
Afterwards, it was decided that it was too big and too difficult to move. So it remains exactly where it landed over a hundred years ago - except now it's covered in 50 feet of water from Kerr Lake.
Did you know about this train wreck at the bottom of beautiful Kerr Lake?
Who knew there was an underwater train wreck in North Carolina!?
If you love learning about the state’s history, keep reading about
10 historic must-see attractions in North Carolina!
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Kerr Lake, North Carolina 28510, USA