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Chenoa Depot: 1905

Chenoa Depot: 1905

Circa 1905. "Station & buildings at Chenoa, Illinois." Plus: circus posters! 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.


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Changes in a few years

Here's a post card found online, dated c. 1911, that shows the station from another side. It looks to be the wrong size at first glance, but refer back to the Shorpy photo and note how oversize the doors and windows are compared to the man checking out the postings by the door.

A row of trees have been planted. The express company building appears to be moved or removed by about 1911.

Diamonds/crossings and new track are in place right by the station -- things are getting busy in Chenoa! So here are the two railroads mentioned earlier, resulting in the station being called a union depot in the post card inscription.

In the 1911 picture, I wonder how long that (electric?) line lasted hanging over the tracks? It had to have been blasted by stack exhaust from engines that passed under it.

Passing By

This past March, my wife and I drove past Chenoa on I-55. We were returning to the Bull City from a Shorpy-inspired visit to Dwight. I guess next time we'll stop in Chenoa.

Circus stars leave town

I see the trunk escape artists are waiting on the platform.

When railroads interesct

You end up with beautiful little Midwest towns like this. Even today it's hard to find towns this small except in the middle of nowhere whose form and function derived from being on a rail line. It's still a small beautiful town.

Graffiti or signage?

Look to the right at that smaller structure. I think I see a prancing horse painted on a panel.

[That's a seal on one of the circus posters mentioned in the caption. - Dave]

OS Chenoa

To bad Bobby Troup didn’t roll Chenoa into his famous tune, “Route 66.“ Looks like a train departing after dropping off freight for the United States Express Company to handle. Train order board is at stop, most likely for the occupied block the departing train is in. My guess is that the smaller semaphore is a distant signal for the interlocking limits ahead. Two railroads went through town, the Chicago and Alton (C&A), and the Toledo Peoria and Western (TP&W). The TPW is still at it, owned by Rail America. I get a glimpse of their trains in Kentland, Indiana now and again while rambling on highway 41. The old C&A is now part of the Union Pacific. Can only wonder which main is pictured.


For the 5:25 from Joliet.

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