Amboy Illinois Central Depot


The Amboy Illinois Central Depot is a former rail station in the city of Amboy, Lee County, Illinois, United States. The building was constructed as a headquarters building for the Illinois Central Railroad as well as a public train station for the fledgling city of Amboy in 1876. It was designed by railroad staff architect James Nocquet after a fire destroyed the original Illinois Central offices on the site. The building was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 1992.The rectangular, Italianate building operated as Illinois Central Railroad's Northern Division headquarters until 1894. After 1894 the rail line through Amboy was downgraded in importance by the railroad and the division headquarters moved elsewhere. Today the depot is operated as a public museum. The museum grounds include the depot, which houses artifacts and exhibits and several outbuildings. Also on the property is a steam locomotive which, in 1976, was the last steam engine in the United States to be commissioned for regular freight service. The locomotive was obtained from the now defunct Northwestern Steel and Wire company and is maintained as a static display.HistoryThe Amboy Illinois Central Depot was constructed in 1876 within the right-of-way for the Illinois Central Railroad. When the Illinois Central was authorized by a Stephen A. Douglas-sponsored act of Congress on September 20, 1854 it was to be the largest railroad company on earth. The act authorized a mainline from Dunleith (later East Dubuque) to Cairo and branch lines from Centralia to Chicago. Based upon the length of the divisions, Illinois Central's division headquarters was to be built in Lee County.


50 S East Ave
Amboy, IL

Opening Hours

Thursday 13:00 - 15:30
Friday 10:00 - 15:30
Saturday 10:00 - 03:30
Sunday 13:00 - 15:30


(815) 857-4700


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