Friday, April 3, 2015

Fence update and Depot Tour


1. The fence is coming along nicely!  We had people working on the fence since Tuesday (3/31/2015) and they might be finished next week. Yay!

2.  For those that are interested in the outside tour of The Depot we are going to have them open to the public very soon with Main Street and Tourism.  Some of y'all have already gotten a glimpse of it.  For those of you who want reminders, or immediate gratification, read on to find the outside markers listed on the tour.

The roof spire is located on top of the middle pyramidal roof.  Gertrude McDermott (daughter of Mr. McDermott who owned The Depot) told a story of when the middle spire was hit by lightning.  Guests and workers fled but the fire petered out with an undramatic whimper.  In the attic you can still see a few beams that were scorched.  One guest took a LARGE steamer trunk down from his room on the second floor and across the tracks all by himself. A feat that could not be repeated since it took four men to carry it back. In the 1970’s, a replica replaced the first spire.

On the top right corner, above the door facing Phillips, you can see a date and faint mortar lines stencilled over painted brick.

On the trackside of The Depot, a surveyor’s mark points out the highest elevation on the Illinois Central Railroad line between New Orleans and St. Louis.

During the 1970’s an engineer, backing up the train, refused to listen to his brake man telling him to stop.  The train car hit The Depot at this  corner.  The sound was heard as an anticlimactic thud by the Wyatt family who were eating lunch inside.  The northwest corner of the baggage room was  fixed and the sideline track was made shorter to prevent future accidents.

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