Train Stations W&OD Railroad

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Park office:
703-729-0596


Station agent S. D. Ledford surrounded by the mysteries of telegraph equipment in the Vienna, VA., station, c. 1933. Photo: H. Glenn Cunningham.  
"In the years after 1880, railroad depots became the hub of small-town life; around them developed businesses dependent upon train transportation, and in them converged people anxious to learn the latest telegraphic news...The typical small-town depot existed to serve several purposes, each clearly defined by its builders. It provided accomodation for

One Page With a Photo of Each Station
Paul McCray's new site on history of the railroad -- many photographs.
Alphabetical List of Photos of Train Stations

 
passengers waiting to board and alighting from trains, sheltered people waiting for arriving friends, and family and seeing off others, and received people having business with the telegraph office. Most Americans understood these functions.
"Of secondary interest to the public, but because of its high profits, of chief importance to the railroad company, the freight business required adequate accomodation, too....

"A station had to accomodate people waiting for trains, of course, but it had to recognize that women might prefer separate waiting rooms, that in southern states, all blacks had to be separated from whites, and that many would-be passengers may wish to smoke.

"Operating trains placed further demands on the str...ucture. At almost every depot, train crews watched the signal called the 'order board'; when it showed yellow or red, they slowed or stopped and received directives from the train dispatcher relayed through the station agent. ... Consequently, almost every station thrust out a bay window toward the station platform; from his desk in the window, the agent could look both ways along the track, signal trains, and attend to his voluminous paperwork."

--John Stilgoe, Metropolitan Corridor, 1983

 Maps of Train Stations On W&OD
  Train Stations -- Eastern Half
  Train Stations, Western Half




This page was last modified Nov. 27, 2002

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