Union Depot Railroad Museum

Tour the Union Depot Railroad Museum

Located in downtown Mendota, IL

The Union Depot Railroad Museum building is what remains of the original grand 1888 Mendota Railroad Station. However, when the society acquired the site it was virtually an empty shell. Many volunteers spent countless hours restoring the building to its original state with ticket office and waiting room. The museum has a waiting room for trains that stop in Mendota, a large HO model railroad layout depicting Mendota with its grand railroad station, display rooms with railroad artifacts, and an extensive railroad library.

Union Depot Railroad Museum is an MMHS museum and a Amtrak station stop. The building is a restored part of the original railroad station built in late 1880's which was torn down in the early 1940's. The museum houses many railroad artifacts, HO model railroad depicting Mendota in the late 1930'/ early 1940's, extensive railroad history library, and many displays.
Part of the building is a waiting room for Amtrak passengers.

Our railroad collection includes:

1923 CB&Q steam locomotive and tender

1911 CB&Q wooden Waycar (caboose)

1937 Illinois Central Mail Storage Car

1949 Golden Trencher Dining Car

1938 Milwaukee Combine Car

Fairmont Motor Car

Tours of this equipment is included in the Union Depot museum tour

Union Depot Railroad Museum

Winter Schedule: 9 December through 24 February 

Hours: 1 to 4 pm Saturday

For tours by appointment call (815) 539-3373 

Baldwin built steam locomotive

Baldwin built steam locomotive

The Baldwin built steam locomotive on display is on loan from LaSalle County. It is a CB&Q railroad 2-8-2 Mikado locomotive that was used in freight and passenger service for many years. Visitors can ring the bell from in the cab.

the "Speeder " motor track inspection car

"Speeder" motor track inspection car

Rides on the "Speeder " motor track inspection car are available for visitors. (conditions permitting)

HO model railroad

HO model railroad

One view of the HO model railroad as it appeared in the early 1940's. Mendota had up 40 trains a day servicing the town. The Illinois Central, CB&Q and Milwaukee Road were major carriers with passenger service. Steam locomotive models with sound effects can be seen pulling passenger cars as they did many a year ago.