A bright yellow beacon of the past, a lovingly restored train depot along the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad in West Virginia, is gone after 107 years.
Fire destroyed the station in Marlinton, W. Va., listed on the National Register of Historic Places, early on March 28. The building had housed the Pocahontas County Convention and Visitors Bureau and served as a reminder of the region’s long-ago timber boom.
No one was hurt, but the fire department declared the structure a total loss.
“We were the only existing depot that had its original furniture,” said Shirley Adams of the tourism office.
Among the lost items were a two-seat desk, a semaphore used to signal trains and a telegraph. A wall featuring planks of various native woods also was destroyed.
The building was renovated sometime after the trains quit running in 1978.
The C&O Railroad was begun in 1868 and finished in 1873, linking Huntington with Richmond, Va., and opening up southern West Virginia to industrialization.
Pocahontas County has preserved three other depots: the Durbin Depot on Route 250; the Clover Lick Depot at milepost 71.2 on the Greenbrier River Trail; and the Cass Depot, starting point for the Cass Scenic Railroad.
All are on the National Register.
On the Net:
Division of Tourism: http://www.wvtourism.com/spec.aspx?pgID=84
West Virginia Railroad Museum: http://www.wvrailmuseum.com/
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