Canaan Union Depot

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Union Depot
Canaan Union Depot.jpg
The Union Depot during its working life.
Canaan Union Depot is located in Connecticut
Canaan Union Depot
LocationNorth Canaan, Connecticut
Coordinates42°1′34″N 73°19′46″W / 42.02611°N 73.32944°W / 42.02611; -73.32944Coordinates: 42°1′34″N 73°19′46″W / 42.02611°N 73.32944°W / 42.02611; -73.32944
ArchitectG. H. Bundy
Architectural styleGothic
Part ofCanaan Village Historic District (#90001800)
NRHP reference #72001317[1]
Significant dates
Added to NRHPApril 26, 1972
Designated CPDecember 13, 1990

The Canaan Union Depot, also known as the Union Depot, is located in Canaan Village, in the town of North Canaan, Connecticut, and is a former union station. It was built in 1872 at the junction of the Housatonic Railroad and the Connecticut Western Railroad which was acquired by the Central New England Railway.[2]


The station was located at the level junction between the two rail lines, making a right angle right at the crossover. The angle of the building was a 3-story tower, at the top of which sat the electric telegraph operator. The two 90-foot (27-meter) wings of the building were occupied by the two railroad companies. The first floor of the station had a large restaurant that was especially important before the development of the dining car. Eventually, both the Central New England and the Housatonic Railroad became a part of the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad. The New Haven was later merged into the Penn Central Transportation.[2]


The station was no longer used for passenger service after 1971, and regular freight service on the line ended in 1974. The station then became a retail location, with a restaurant in the southeastern wing. When the railroad was reopened as the new Housatonic Railroad in 1980, the station was not repurchased, though the new company did maintain offices there for many years.

The station was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972,[2] and was also included in the Canaan Village Historic District in 1990.[3]

More than half of the station — namely the southeast half — was destroyed by arson late in the evening of October 12, 2001.[4] The Connecticut Railroad Historical Association purchased what was left in 2003, and the organization began to restore it.[5] Part of the building shell and the tower were restored, but work then stalled for more than a decade due to red tape required to get grant money, and negations with the Housatonic Rail Road over safety issues. The project got back on track in 2014.[6] The town of North Canann solicited bids for "Rehabilitation of the Union Deport Railroad Station" in August 2015.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13.
  2. ^ a b c Susan Babbitt (December 7, 1971). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory - Nomination Form: Union Depot". National Park Service. Retrieved February 4, 2016. Accompanying photo.
  3. ^ Mary E. McCahon (March 1990). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination: Canaan Village Historic District". National Park Service.
  4. ^ Cohen, Jeffrey B. (November 25, 2001). "The View From North Canaan; Fire Burns Old Station And Hits a Town's Heart". The New York Times. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  5. ^ Jeffrey Cohen, The View/From North Canaan; Restoring a Landmark, A Rail (and Wish) at a Time, The New York Times, February 9, 2003
  6. ^ Broughton, Kathy (July 11, 2014). "Department of Transportation Gives Nod to Plan for Canaan Union Depot". Litchfield County Times. Digital First Media. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  7. ^ "Rehabilitation of the Union Deport Railroad Station" (PDF). Town of New Cannan. 2015. Retrieved February 4, 2016.

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