Near the end of the 18th century, Colonel Samuel Hugh Hawkins and the people of Americus decided a new train line was needed to ensure that their town would continue to grow and prosper. The resulting line, called the Savannah, Americus, and Montgomery, helped spur development throughout rural Georgia, and the historic SAM Shortline trains that now traverse its rails pay tribute to both the early line and its founder with the name. Vintage cars from 1949, transformed into comfortable, air-conditioned passenger liners, steer passengers through Georgia's landscape in five tours, with layovers encouraging riders to explore the towns of Plains, Americus, Leslie, and Cordele. A stop in Plains, the hometown of President Jimmy Carter, grants an up-close view of the stateman's boyhood home, campaign museum, and White House replica built entirely from peanuts. Between stops, a well-stocked commissary car lets rail-riders feast on à la carte items, including snacks, hot and cold beverages, and refreshing ice-cream treats.