Funding will go toward first phase of historic train depot restoration project
PULLMAN — The Port of Whitman County recently awarded the Whitman County Historical Society a $50,000 grant to help preserve Pullman’s historic train depot.
Built in 1917 by the Northern Pacific Railway, the Pullman Depot operated as a passenger and freight depot for 71 years until Northern Pacific sold the building in 1988. The Historical Society purchased the building for $300,000 in 2018 with the intent of sustaining one of the region’s most iconic sites.
The Port’s grant will be expended over two years as the Historical Society works to preserve the structural integrity of the more than 100-year-old Northern Pacific Depot building’s exterior in the first phase of a five-step restoration project. Supporting the Heritage Center aligns with the Port’s mission of preserving multimodal transportation – and its history – in Whitman County.
"The financial support provided by the Port of Whitman County to the Pullman Depot Heritage Center recognizes the historical importance of water and rail transportation to Whitman County's agricultural development,” said Debbie Sherman, fundraising chair of the Heritage Center. “Prior to the arrival of railroads to transport grain, our rivers then as now, supplied the means to deliver goods to market. This partnership celebrates the role transportation modes played in our county's growth.”
The Historical Society envisions the former Pullman depot once again serving as a focal point for Whitman County, a place where the community can gather to celebrate its local heritage, both past and present. Plans for the building’s interior include permanent and changeable exhibits, a meeting space, children’s exploration area, gift shop, restrooms and leased space. Planned exterior updates include restoring the passenger car and caboose, reestablishing the brick platform, building a children’s play space and improving traffic flow.
For more information about the Pullman Depot Heritage Center or to donate, please visit www.pullmandepot.org.
About the Port of Whitman County
The Port of Whitman County is dedicated to improving the quality of life for all citizens of Whitman County through industrial real estate development, preservation of multi-modal transportation, facilitation of economic development and provision of on-water recreational opportunities.