On the eve of their merger with SAL, ACL enlisted Professor Glenn Hoffman to research and author their corporate history, Building a Great Railroad: A History of the Atlantic Coast Line. This is definitely a must read for anyone interested in Southeastern railroad history. Unfortunately, I’m in a different latitude than my copy. Seth Bramson’s history of the FEC, Speedway to the Sunshine does cite some of the specifics. In 1944 ACL announced its intent to absorb the FEC through direct purchase. This pursuit dragged on for over 10 years. In a rare episode of governmental consciousness the purchase was opposed by the state. The unions also looked dimly on the proposal for fear of lost jobs. In 1958 the omniscient and almighty ICC denied the proposed ACL-FEC merger. It was after ACL gave up on the FEC that SAL proposed merger. The offer of the SAL south of Winter Haven was not addressed in either history.