Survey work started in November 1914 and construction commenced in February 1915. The route used was to follow as close as possible the line of contour thus avoiding the building of large embankments so followed a winding route reaching Maktau in June where it halted until further rail supplies could be obtained and for the way forward to be cleared of the enemy who by now were entrenched 12 miles to the west of Maktau at Mbuyuni. Once South African reinforcements started to arrive in December, the rail head moved on steadily as the troops drove the German Schutztruppe west wards back into German East Africa.
The 25th and 26th (Railway) Companies, Sappers and Miners, the 61st (KGO) Pioneers, 300 Indian coolies and a unit of 1,500 African labourers were employed in building the railway.
The railway was frequently interfered with and disrupted by the German raiding parties
The railway eventually linked up with the Usambara Line from Tanga to Moshi and progressed on to Arusha
Share with friends