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Goforth, James A.



  • Existence: 1917 - 2008


James A. Goforth was born July 15, 1917 in Asheville, North Carolina. He graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1939 with a B.S. degree.

From 1939-1942 Goforth worked for the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in Kentucky. WPA was a federally funded public works program to provide employment to the unemployed during the Great Depression of the 1930s. In 1942-1943, he was a structural analyst for the Bristol Aircraft Division, Bristol, Virginia. Goforth launched a new career in 1943 with Clinchfield Railway. At Clinchfield, he served as assistant engineer for design and construction (1943-55); maintenance engineer (1955-68), and chief engineer (1968-73). Goforth served as city engineer and consulting engineer for the City of Johnson City, Tennessee. He returned to Clinchfield Railway in 1979 as chief engineer and retired in 1981. In retirement, he remained a consulting engineer until 1987.

Goforth served as chapter historian for the Watauga Valley Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society. He has published "Building The Clinchfield - A Construction History" (1983) and has contributed to "An Encyclopedia of East Tennessee" (1981) and "History of Washington County, Tennessee"(1988). He was the editor of Whistle Stop, the newsletter of the Watauga Valley Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society. Goforth was a member of the following professional and civic organizations: Registered Professional Engineer in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Virginia; charter member of Tennessee Society of Professional Engineers; American Railway Engineering Association; American Railway Bridge and Building Association; Tennessee State Grade Crossing Committee; and Erwin Kiwanis Club.

James A. Goforth died in Erwin, Tennessee on November 29, 2008.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Carolina, Clinchfield, and Ohio Railway Records

Identifier: AppMs-0096
Arrangement This collection was received in three distinct donations: original acquisition, first addendum, and second addendum. The original acquisition is broken down into twelve series: Series 1, Minutes; Series 2, Annual Reports; Series 3, Industrial Agent Correspondence; Series 4, Engineering Files; Series 5 Accident and Personal Injury Files; Series 6, Special Excursion Files; Series 7, Subject Files; Series 8, Holston Land Company; Series 9, Black Mountain Railway; Series 10,...
Dates: 1899 - 1983; Majority of material found within 1909 - 1954

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  • Subject: Appalachian Region -- Economic conditions X