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The east/west line that eventually became the Toledo, Peoria and Western (TP&W) crossed

Iroquois County in 1859. The north/south line that became the Chicago & Eastern

Illinois (C&EI) in 1871. For many years, the two railroads operated separate depots.

In 1906, the current Depot was built and shared by the two lines.

The Depot included a large waiting room, a smaller Lady's waiting room (for women traveling alone)

and separate offices for each railroad. The TP&W office and freight room are on the northeast

side of the building. The  C&EI office and freight room were in the southwest corner of the building

and currently houses the C&EI Historical Society Museum.

During the golden age of railroads,  the Depot provided a window to the world. Mail, freight and

passenger services connected Iroquois County to the larger urban areas. The Depot closed

in 1967 and was in real danger of being lost forever. In 1987 the Union Pacific Railroad 

announced that it planned to demolish the old Depot. Locals were given one month to find a buyer.

In addition, the railroad insisted that the Depot be relocated to a safer distance from the tracks. 

A group of local citizens rallied to Save Our Station. After much work and negotiation, the group

succeeded. They received a donation of property that allowed the Depot to be moved 150 yards

to the southeast. They raised the funds to move the Depot in 1989, restore the interior and build a new


As a result of their hard work the Depot was saved. The Depot received National Landmark Status 

in 1988 and set up a not-for-profit corporation to maintain the facilites.

The space can be rented by the public and all proceeds go to maintaning the Depot. In addition,

the Depot Board holds two other annual fundraisers.

         1) On Mother's Day Friday and Saturday, the Depot sells beautiful hanging baskets.

         2) On July 4th, the Depot has its Gooseberry festival selling barbeque and fruit pies.

UPSTAIRS $50 per day

The upstars area is the original Depot space. The space is divided into 3 areas. The original waiting room, the ladies waiting room and the freight office. A unisex restroom is available. Space will accommodate 20 people.

DOWNSTAIRS $75 per day

The downstairs area was added when the Depot was moved to its current location. It will accommodate 60 people, It has separate male and female restrooms, full kitchen and a ramp for handicap access.


The C&EI Museum is run by the C&EI Historical Society. It contains memorabilia from the golden age of railroads. It is free to the public (donations are appreciated. Hours are the first Saturday of the month 10a-2p from May to October.

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