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#19

Railroad Crossing
4 x 4 quilt block

The railroad served as the lifeblood of Landrum from the mid-1870s until the Southern Railway closed its station here and in Campobello on June 29, 1973.

 

The Rev. John Gill Landrum offered the railroad four acres of land on the condition it be used for a station.  The railroad accepted and named the new depot Landrum Station.

 

The town was founded around the depot at a public auction on June 12, 1877.  Rev. Landrum offered 47 lots and O. P. Earle, another 16. A two-story structure with living quarters for the station agent and his family on the second floor because of the scarcity of housing.  Six years later, it burned and the present depot was built.

 

According to the The Landrum Leader’s July 3, 1973 article recounting the history of the station, “Lumber, cross ties, telephone poles, cotton, grain, peaches and some cattle were shipped from Landrum by farmers of northeast Greenville County, northwest Spartanburg County and Polk County.  In early days, the depot was a busy place.  For amusement many of the townspeople met trains on Sundays and holidays to see who was coming or going, to watch express and mail loaded and unloaded, and to watch, in awe, the mighty power of a smoking, puffing locomotive.  Grape growing got its start in the Landrum-Tryon area because of the ready market for fresh grapes to passengers on trains passing through.”  These trains ran between Asheville and Charleston until 1972.

 

After the station closed, the city was granted use of the depot in a lease that set the amount at $1 for 100 years.  The Landrum Civic Center officially opened in 1976 after renovations by several civic groups.

 

The need for more extensive work to maintain the depot became obvious after several decades of use.

 

On November 16, 2013, the city celebrated the re-opening and two-year renovation of the depot.The city’s hospitality tax fund was the principal source of funding, with assistance from the Polk County Community Foundation.  

 

The building now houses artifacts found during the renovation and provides event meeting space.

 

Hung November 2013

Funded by the City of Landrum