Punta Gorda Railroad Depot - Punta Gorda, FL
Posted by: rogueblack
N 26° 55.743 W 082° 02.759
17R E 396154 N 2979006
Quick Description: Owned and operated by the Punta Gorda Historical Society
Location: Florida, United States
Date Posted: 3/18/2008 8:08:42 PM
Waymark Code: WM3DDK
According to the Peace River Center for Writers website
The Depot, built in 1928, was the southernmost train station in the United States at that time. It is the only one remaining of six depots built by the Atlantic Coast Line in the Mediterranean Revival style then popular. Closed in 1971, the depot was vacant for many years. The late Fred Babcock acquired the building, and in 1996, he donated it to the Historical Society.
The building, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was designed mainly to handle freight. The passenger area occupies a small portion of the northern end of the building. The racially separate ticket windows, waiting areas, and bathrooms reflect the segregation practice at the time of its construction.
The building interior has been restored, as current codes allowed, to its original state. The "colored" waiting room has been restored to its original condition; it is now the Bernice A. Russell Colored Waiting Room Museum. The Bernice A. Russell CDC prepares and presents the exhibits featuring the history and culture of African-Americans in Punta Gorda and Charlotte County. The "white waiting room" now includes a handicapped-accessible restroom and will also display historical exhibits. The freight room, loading dock and trackside dock will be as they were originally except for the new handicapped ramp, safety railings and entrance steps. Future plans visualize railroad cars exhibited on the sidings.
Is the station/depot currently used for railroad purposes?: No
Is the station/depot open to the public?: Yes
If the station/depot is not being used for railroad purposes, what is it currently used for?:
The depot is being used as a museum, an antique store, and a flea market on scheduled occassions.
What rail lines does/did the station/depot serve?: Atlantic Coast Line
Station/Depot Web Site: [Web Link]
Please post an original picture of the station/depot taken while you were there. Please also record how you came to be at this station/depot and any interesting information you learned about it while there.