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Local History Index

    Wisconsin Railroad Depots - Restored: Museums, Restaurants, Etc.

Compiled and Edited by Michael R. Reilly

Last Revised 03/24/2006

Central Wisconsin

Black Earth Depot and Museum - Black Earth

Depot Days of Green County - All nine communities in Green County focus on their individual railroad history. Also taking place over the weekend were many model railroad, railroad collectible and artifact displays, railroad music, tours of 5 depots, two of which are on the National Register of Historic Places, locomotive and caboose tours, hobo history and stew, and much more.

Green County Welcome Center, 2108 - 7th Avenue Monroe, WI 53566, 608-325-4636 - Fax: 608-325-4647, Housed in a meticulously restored Milwaukee Road train depot, the Welcome Center offers visitors a wealth of information on Green County.

Little A-Merrick-A Amusement Park and Miniature Golf - 700 E Main St, Marshall 

            Main Page: http://www.littleamerricka.com/
            Railroad Page:  http://www.littleamerricka.com/default.aspx?c=3

Northwestern Railroad Depot Museum and Log Cabins - Marion

Babe's Grill & Bar at the Depot, 640 W. Washington Ave., Madison, WI 53703-2698, sports bar is in a beautifully renovated space at the old train station, close to the Kohl Center and downtown.

Riverside & Great Northern Railway - Open daily 10 am to 6 pm Memorial Day through Labor Day and on Weekends in May, Sept, Oct. 15 inch gauge steam-powered operating railroad, 3 min ride. Call 608-254-6367. N115 Cty N, Wisconsin Dells

Northeast Wisconsin

The Dartford Historical Society was organized in 1956 to preserve the history of the village of Dartford (now the city of Green Lake), Green Lake County, Wisconsin. It owns two historic buildings now serving as museums: an 1870's railroad depot, and the former public library.

Eagle River - the former Northwoods Depot gift/coffee shop (Editor's note: wasn't in business in Oct. 2003)

Fox Lake Historical Museum, Inc, 211 Cordelia Street, Fox Lake WI

Titletown Brewing Company - Located in the historic Chicago & North-Western railroad depot, brew pub features a restaurant, billiards hall and a brewery producing five to seven fresh specialty beers.

Gresham Railroad Depot and Museum, 1311 North Main Street, Shawano, 715-787-3271 or 715-787-3634. View an unique collection of railroad memorabilia at this former railroad depot including telegrapher's equipment, pictures and timetables, old fashioned railroad lanterns, freight wagons and variety of other railway equipment. Open during the summer months on Saturday afternoons from 1:30 to 4pm, or by special appointments.

Lumberjack Special Steam Train and Camp Five Museum - Call 715-647-3414 or toll-free 800-774-3414. Rt 1, Laona

Markesan Historical Society - Grand River Valley Museum and Depot, 214 E. John Street, Markesan, Wisconsin

National Railroad Museum - America's oldest and largest railroad museum. Open daily May-Oct 9 am to 5 pm. Nov-Apr Mon to Fri 9 am to 5 pm. Call 920-437-7623 or 920-435-7245. 2285 S Broadway, Green Bay. Houses the Hood Junction Railroad Depot.
 
New London Historical Society Museum, 920/982-5186 Restored Chicago & North Western RR depot.
 
Rhinelander SOO LINE DEPOT -- The depot was built in 1892 by the Soo Line RR, and remained in constant railroad service until 1989. Donated to the City of Rhinelander by the Wisconsin Central Ltd. RR, it was moved to its present location in 1990, from its original position in the Soo Line yards about a mile west and north of the park. Remodeled numerous times during its 97 years of service, the depot has now been restored to its original design and paint scheme. A model railroad display is located in the basement under the depot. It is a representation of the prototype railroads operating in Rhinelander in the 1920's - 1940's.

Three Lakes Winery, 6971 Gogebic Street PO Box 37 Three Lakes, Wisconsin Phone: (715) 546-3080 1-800-944-54, downtown in the old railroad depot, restored and redecorated.

Northwest Wisconsin

Ashland Soo Line Railroad Depot restoration project. Before the devastating fire it housed the South Shore Brewing Company, a micro-brewery in the historic Soo Line Depot. Built in 1887, the depot had been restored to house the brewery and two restaurants.

Bayfield County Historical Society Mason Depot Museum - Mason

Frederic Soo Line Depot / Frederic Area Historical Museum - Frederic

Kendall Railroad Depot - The original railroad depot has been converted into the Sparta Trail Headquarters' and history museum. The depot building has been designed as a National Historic Site and a Wisconsin State Historical Place. Kendall's history began when L.G. Kendalls, agent for Chicago & Northwestern railroad offered to purchase some land from J.R. Lyons to build a roundhouse near the village of Glendale but they could not reach an agreeable price so Kendalls went two miles up the Baraboo river valley (present site of Kendall) and purchased the land. In 1847 W.A. Melbury purchased the remaining land from Kendalls, had it surveyed and platted and thus began Kendalls (the "s" being dropped later).

The Osceola & St. Croix Valley Railway in Polk County.

Medford's historic railroad depot is now home to fine coffee, craft & gift shops

Mercer Area Historical Society, PO Box 638, Mercer WI  54547

Morrisonville Depot Preservation Society Morrisonville lies about halfway between Madison and Portage. The Depot Preservation Society has just taken ownership of the former Milwaukee Road depot in Morrisonville and plans to restore it.

Pepin Railroad Depot Museum - Call 715-442-3011. Laura Ingalls Wilder Park

Railroad Memories Museum - Railroad artifacts, photos, videos, equipment and model trains in the former C & NW depot. Open daily Memorial Day to Labor Day 10 am to 5 pm. Call 715-635-3325. N8425 Island Lake Rd, Spooner

Sparta Depot Headquarters for the La Crosse River State Park Trail. 

Wausau Railroad Depot - This landmark is a highly recognized symbol of Wausau. Wausau Insurance Companies used the depot as its trademark as early as 1954. Finding this depot while you're in the area is not as simple as you might think because, in truth, Wausau has three depots. The depot in the trademark is modeled after the former Milwaukee Road facility located at 720 Grant Street. A faithful reproduction of this famous building was built by Wausau Insurance and serves as a meeting facility near their corporate headquarters. The third depot once served passengers of the Chicago Northwestern Railroad. Now home to several businesses, it is located on Washington Street in downtown Wausau on the Wisconsin River.

Southeast Wisconsin

The Cudahy Historical Society Railroad Depot, 4647 S. Kinnickinnic Ave., is open on the last Saturday of the month, April through October, from 10 A.M. to 12 noon.

East Troy Electric Museum. "The East Troy Electric Railroad runs from Mukwonago to East Troy in southeast Wisconsin. Built in 1907 by the Milwaukee Electric Railway & Light Company, it continues in its 91st year as both a living shortline as well as a museum." Features trolley rides and dinner trains.

Elkhart Lake Depot Museum

The Genesee Depot Cafe operates in the original train depot building, from which the community gets its name, near the Wisconsin & Calumet Railroad running through the area. Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Oct. 23, 1999.

Iola Railroad Depot and Museum - Iola

Kettle Moraine Steam Train - A train ride back in time, through the age of steam, when life was a little bit simpler. The nostalgic ride will take you on an eight mile round trip through the beautiful forests of the northern Kettle Moraine State Forest with a visit to an 1890s railroad depot. (Editor's note: this may be out of business since 2003)

Menomonee Falls Historical Society, Old Falls Village, Description:  Eight historic homes and buildings, including railroad depot and dairy.  Costumed guides give tours May-September

<--Main Street Depot - Located in Oconomowoc's Historic Stone Depot (Built 1896), a restored Milwaukee Road station.

North Prairie: the depot on Main Street is now a restaurant, while business occupies the freight depot next door. Source: Waukesha, WI and Waukesha County Depots including Nashotah and Okaukee Nashotah: a Milwaukee Road depot houses a cabinet-making facility. 

 Okauchee: a former Milwaukee Road depot, which is now said to be a private residence

Ozaukee County Pioneer Village 4880 Hwy I, Cedarburg, WI, Saukville, 262-377-4510, A living history museum of over 20 buildings of 1840 - 1907, Cedarburg Railroad Depot relocated and restored here.

C. & N. W. Sussex Depot & Railway History - Sussex Lisbon Area Historical Society

The Waukesha Depot restaurant (former), for more photos click here http://www.msoe.edu/st_orgs/some/cc-building/protophotos.php 

Southwest Wisconsin

Boscobel Depot Museum

Brodhead Historical Depot Museum - The historical past is best seen at the old Wells-Fargo depot in the downtown area filled with memories of days gone by. The Brodhead "Milwaukee Road" depot has a caboose and Fairbanks locomotive on display. This depot is on an active rail line. The building has been transformed into a museum which is open to the public from Memorial Day through September on Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays and holidays from 1 pm to 4 pm.

Fennimore Railroad Historical Society Museum, home of the "Dinky", is located at 610 Lincoln Avenue, Fennimore, Wisconsin, in the former city power house and utility building. The building has been remodeled inside and out to resemble a depot of the turn-of-the-century. The replica loading platform is laid with brick from the original depot using just sand and brick --- the way it was originally built. 

Mazomanie's downtown district with 34 buildings listed on the National Historic Register. Stroll the Railroad Corridor Path or visit Mazomanie Historic Museum, the 1870's People's State Bank, the Mazomanie Depot, and the Lynch & Walker Flouring Mill.

Mid-Continent Railway Museum - Free parking and picnic area. Gift shop.
Call 608-522-4261 or toll-free 800-930-1385 for reservations. E8948 Diamond Hill Rd, North Freedom

Mineral Point Railroad Society depot

 
Park Lane Model Railroad Museum - Call 608-254-8050. S2083 Herwig Rd, Reedsburg]\
 
 

St. Feriole Island Depot Restaurant, Prairie du Chein, WI, original late 1800's vintage Milwaukee Road depot. 

Related links

Circus World Museum - part of the yearly (?) Great Circus Train

The Milwaukee Road Historical Association

Wisconsin Depot History - find information and stories about the vast history of Wisconsin Railroad Depots.

WisDOT Bureau of Railroads and Harbors

Railroad Station Historical Society, Inc., Depot Museums

Other Depot sites

Stiles Junction, Oconto County - Railroad Depot, located 1/4 mile south of Hwy 141 & 22 junction on Hwy 141. This former depot for the east-west Chicago Northwestern line and the north-south Milwaukee line is located at an unusual rural right angle crossing and had platforms on two sides to serve the two lines.

 

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Copyright Sussex-Lisbon Area Historical Society, Inc., , 2002 - 2014, Except as noted: All documents placed on the SLAHS.org website remain the property of the contributors, who retain publication rights in accordance with US Copyright Laws and Regulations. In keeping with our policy of providing free information on the Internet, these documents may be used by anyone for their personal research. They may be used by non-commercial entities, when written permission is obtained from the contributor, so long as all notices and submitter information are included. These electronic pages may NOT be reproduced in any format for profit. Any other use, including copying files to other sites, requires permission from the contributors PRIOR to uploading to the other sites. The submitter has given permission to the SLAHS.org website to store the file(s) for free access. Such permission may be revoked upon written notice to the SLAHS.org website webmaster. Website's design, hosting, and maintenance are donated by Website Editor & Webmaster: Michael R. Reilly (Mike)