The Fort Belvoir Military Railroad (FBMRR) was constructed in 1918 when Camp A.A. Humphreys was made a semi-permanent cantonment as the U.S. entered into World War 1. The two main objectives for FBMRR were to bring supplies and troops to camp for its rapid construction and war mobilization and to train engineer troops on the building of railroads, bridges, and other facilities essential to the U.S. war effort in France.
The 4.51-mile, standard gauge railroad was built largely by combat engineers, with some assistance by civilian workers and soldiers from other branches. From January to July of 1918 they laid track from the railhead junction near Newington to the center of the camp.
North of this location, near the railhead, was Newington Station. Dubbed Accotink Station for military purposes, this was the point of arrival and departure for thousands of soldiers beginning in 1918. The Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Potomac Railroad was authorized to close the station in 1971. Though parts of FBMRR were eventually decommissioned, much of the main line remained in use until the last locomotive left the installation in 1993.
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