"Sunbathing in Bluefield": Higginbotham's Summit - 363.3 miles from Norfolk at the top of a 1.0 percent grade when the N&W arrived in 1882-1883 while forming its lines west of the New River to access the Pocahontas coal fields. According to an edition of the Norfolk & Western magazine, local residents started a movement in the early days of the town to establish a post office. When the final papers were being filled out to establish one, the local townspeople were debating what to call the new post office. Suddenly one of the women in the group looked over the fields to the north towards Stoney Ridge which paralleled the railroad on the north side. The mountains at that time were blue from blooming ironweed and the woman stated "Let's call it Blue Fields" which was submitted to the U.S. Post Office Department. It is not certain whether it was accidental or not that the "s" was dropped and the two words combined.
Today, traffic is still fairly strong at this former N&W stronghold. The enormous coaling tower still looms large over the yard reminding everyday folks the importance of this junction. On February 20, 2021 an eastbound loaded coal train sits quietly awaiting the call to Roanoke
A continuously growing album of photos that IMHO reveal the awesome and seldom seen beauty of railroads from the dimming of day to dawn's early light! From dusk to dawn, trains roll on! (I'm still finding sunset to sunrise surprises!)