She burnt the wind
Last ride of the Nancy Hanks
Editor's note: Archie McKay was city editor of The Macon Telegraph when this story appeared on the front page May 1,1971.
By Archie McKay
ABOARD THE NANCY - If the press, railroad officials and historical society buffs were removed from Friday's run of the Nancy, there would have been few passengers.
"You see these people out there by the tracks crying and waving those signs? Well, if they had been aboard the Nancy at least once in the past 10 years we wouldn't be making this last run" said one Macon Central of Georgia Railroad official.
Most of the passengers were newcomers to rail travel who had trouble keeping their balance when walking, a sight which upset the rail buffs aboard.
"You see these people, I wish to God they had been aboard last year or even last week. We could have saved this train," said Al Langley, president of the "Iron Horse Inn," a self-billed Railroadiana- American in Augusta.
The engine was well tended with five people front. John Whitaker, road foreman, looked over the shoulder of several former engineers who wanted to "take the throttle" of the Nancy one more time.
Miss Nancy Hanks II made her first trip on July 17, 1947. The new train boasted deluxe coaches, a grill and lounge car, and even a maid. The cars were painted blue and grey and, like the first Nancy, each bore a likeness of the famed trotter on the side.
Unfortunately, patronage declined on the once proud train, and, so did the grand service. But things were put together again Friday for the last run
Southern borrowed porters, maids and other professionals from such crack trains as "The Southerner" which runs from New Orleans to New York, for the last run.
A potpourri of the Nancy's last run: