Timeline of the Scottsboro Depot Museum's Restoration

As beautiful and treasured as the depot is today, it was not always this way. In fact, the buiding was slated to be torn down. Let's look at a timeline for the depot restoration and look at some of the important people who made this beautiful restoration possible.

1861 Depot completed as the freight and passenger facility for the Memphis and Charleston Railroad, designed by the same architect who designed the Huntsville depot. North Alabama railroads in 1865

1891 Passenger depot built. It opened in 1892. North Alabama railroads in 1865

1964 End of passenger service to Scottsboro. Passenger depot, slated for demolition, was sold to a private citizen and moved. Deteriorated passenger depot

1970s Freight continued to be unloaded and stored at the depot. Depot is use as a freight depot

Dec 1993 End of the time when the depot was manned by a railway agent and was a full-function Southern Railway depot. Last agent was Bill Borden. Bill Borden last station master

1994 Depot scheduled to be demolished. Depot in poor state of repair

Late 1994 Jackson County Historical Association began efforts to acquire the freight depot building while is could be restored. Ann Chambless, Dr. David Campbell, and Clyde Broadway met with the mayor and solicited his help in setting up a meeting with Southern. JCHA members

1995 Southern Railroad gave the city of Scottsboro a 100 year lease on the building. The city gave the building to the Jackson County Historical Association as their headquarters, with the understanding that the association would find funding for its restoration. Newspaper article about depot turnover

Dec 1995 Harvie Jones, a leading historic restoration architect in the southeast, came from Huntsville and gave an assessment of the building. Decision was made to restore the depot to its 1860 state. Picture of Harvie Jones

1996 The building was leaking and deteriorating. Chairman of the depot restoration committee John Neely raised funds to stabilize the building and replace the roof. Newspaper article about depot turnover

1996 Bob Gamble from the Alabama Historical Commission visited the depot and confirmed the historical significance of the depot as one of three remaining pre-Civil War depots in Alabama. Picture of Harvie Jones

1998 Miss Jessie Bynum was designated a Train Master for her financial contributions to the restoration of the depot.

Picture of Jessie Sue Bynum

1998 1998 Depot put on the national register of historical places, with the assistance Ann, David, and Clyde.

depot historical marker

1999 to 2005 Depot restoration stagnated. The committee searched for funding sources. Depot platform

2005 Frances Robb, historical preservation consultant, conducted a workshop to establish short- and long-term goals for the depot. Picture of Frances Robb

2005 Kelly Goodowens took the recommendations from Ms. Robb, and with the support of the committee, prioritized work and set contained, achievable goals that could be funded through sources such as the Bynum Foundation. Annual financial support was secured through the Jackson County legislative delegation. Jackson County legislature logo

2006 As visible progress on restoration became more evident, local people volunteered time and money. Jackson County legislature logo

2006 New Orleans architect Lewis Robinson completed preservation of his pre-Civil War home in Jackson County, and became involved with the depot restoration, providing both exterior and interior design guidance. architect John Graham

2007 Lewis worked with renovation contractor Terry Chance to solve the problem with the chestnut floors identified in the Robb report: spaces so big between the boards that walking in the building was hazardous. Chance's solution involved sanding the floors and combining the sawdust with sealant to close the spaces, making it possible to insure the building and open it to visitors. depot wide-board chestnut floors

2007 Jackson County Historical Association president Jennine Stewart kept work on the depot moving forward, and help from Ann and Kelly.

depot wide-board chestnut floors

2008 Builder Trey Browder performed or supervised all exterior and interior renovations, done slowly over time as funding became available. Trey Browder working at the depot

2010 Lewis acquired the gasolier that hangs in the entry, similar to the one that hangs in the Memphis and Charleston depot in Huntsville. Depot's gasolier in the entry hall

2011 Ann broadcast a call for artifacts to be displayed in the depot museum, speaking to civic groups, newspapers, and internet forums. Ann with Mrs. Weivil accepting a donation

July 2011 Open house was held. At the open house, the need for a wheelchair ramp was identified. Alternations were made to make the depot fully accessible. Visitors at the open house

June 2012 June 2012 Depot began to be open regular hours, Fridays 10-2 and by appointment. Visitors at the open house

We are endebted to the following sources for these wonderful photos: