Filed Under Red Lodge

The Rocky Fork & Cooke City Railway Depot

Red Lodge Commercial Historic District

Coal was discovered in the upper Rock Creek Valley in 1866. The Rocky Fork Development Company purchased the mines in 1887 and actively lobbied the Northern Pacific Railway for a branch line to carry the coal to markets throughout Montana. In 1889, the Rocky Fork & Cooke City Railway reached Red Lodge, causing a boom in the population and fortunes of the new community. The Northern Pacific formally acquired the line in 1890 and abandoned it after World War II. Built in 1889 and expanded in 1904, this classic Craftsman style depot provided, for many, their first glimpse of Red Lodge and the Beartooth Mountains. The flared eaves, eave brackets, shiplap siding, and irregular configuration of the building were hallmarks of Northern Pacific depots along the railroad’s main and branch lines. At one time, this building sported a second floor which served as the living quarters for the railroad’s agent in Red Lodge. Since 1982, the old depot has been the home of the Carbon County Arts Guild.

Images

NPRR Passenger Depot Facade Source: Montana Historical Society Creator: Bryan Baldwin Date: July 24, 2022
The Northern Pacific Railroad Depot (Rocky Fork & Cooke City Railway Depot), streetview Still image capture of the Northern Pacific Railroad Depot located at 8th & Oakes. Trackside elevation with view to northeast. Number 32. b&w print. Source: Official records of the Montana State Historic Preservation Office, Helena, Montana Creator: Kommers, McLaughlin, & Leavengood, Architects
120 E. Callender Livingston, Montana 59047
Date: September, 1981
NPRR Passenger Depot, Red Lodge NPRR Passenger Depot, Red Lodge 1980 photo (verso unavailable) b&w print Source: Official records of the Montana State Historic Preservation Office, Helena, Montana Creator: Unidentified photographer Date: 1980
NPRR Passenger Depot, Red Lodge NPRR Passenger Depot, Red Lodge 1980 photo (verso unavailable) b&w prints Source: Official records of the Montana State Historic Preservation Office, Helena, Montana Creator: Unidentified photographer Date: 1980
NPRR Passenger Depot, Red Lodge NPRR Passenger Depot, Red Lodge 1980 photo (verso unavailable) b&w print Source: Official records of the Montana State Historic Preservation Office, Helena, Montana Creator: Unidentified photographer Date: 1980
First Group of volunteers, Red Lodge, Montana First Group of volunteers, Red Lodge, Montana Community of Red Lodge turns out to bid farewell to the first group of volunteers of WWI May 1917 Catalog #950-576 Source: Montana Historical Society Research Center Photograph Archives, Helena, Montana Creator: Unidentified photographer Date: May 1917

Location

11 West 8th Street, Red Lodge, Montana | Private

Metadata

The Montana National Register Sign Program, “The Rocky Fork & Cooke City Railway Depot,” Historic Montana, accessed December 1, 2022, https://historicmt.org/items/show/59.