Griffin Depots

None of Griffin's railroad depots have survived to the present day, which is unfortunate because old records suggest an interesting history associated with the buildings.

For example, here are two photographs of the Union Depot, which primarily served the Central of Georgia Railway. But note the differences. In the top image the tower stands on the track side of the building but in the lower photo it is on the street side.

Also, maps from the period show a differing picture of the relationship of the building to the tracks and streets. On the city's Sanborn map of 1900, it stands on the north side of the tracks and on the west side of Eighth. A later map, however, puts the building on the south side of the tracks and a bit farther to the east, astride Eighth Street.

1900 Sanborn map (above) shows depot's relationship to tracks.
See comparison with later map

These pieces of information strongly suggest that the building was moved. Perhaps it was jacked up and rolled on logs to the new site, which was only a few dozen yards away. In the early 1900s it was not unheard-of to move fairly large buildings.

Below is the Union Depot that replaced the earlier building. Constructed on the same site, it was simpler in design, but no less an asset to the city.

This later Union Depot, built in 1914-15, was on W. Broad St. at the end of Eighth St., on the south side of the tracks.

The new Union Depot was torn down in the mid-1970s.

In this old postcard view, Union Depot is just to the right of the covered rail platform. Crossing the tracks at the top of the image is Hill Street and the Griffin Grocery Co. building, now the Griffin Welcome Center.

Sources: Image at top of page is from Fruits of Industry; Points and Pictures Along the Central Railroad of Georgia. Passenger Department of the Central Railroad of Georgia System, 1895. Online at Internet Archive. Second image is permission of Georgia Archives.

The two images of the 1914-15 Union Depot are from old postcards.

The aerial view has been cropped from a postcard. For the complete image see: Aerial View, Griffin, Ga. in Georgia Postcards, Boston Public Library on Flickr, Creative Commons License.)

Sanborn maps are from Digital Library of Georgia. Georgia's Railroad History & Heritage. © Steve Storey

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