The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

September 5, 2010

Union Depot timeline: Not in use since 1969

JOPLIN, Mo. — July 2, 1911: The Union Depot opens to serve four railroads.

Nov. 4, 1969: The last passenger train pulls out of the Union Depot, closing it to public use.

February 1972: The Joplin City Council nixes a proposal by the city’s centennial commission to restore the Union Depot as a site for the Joplin Museum Complex in honor of Joplin’s 100th birthday in 1973.

March 1977: Joplin property developers Kirk Yocum and Mary Manard ask the city for $70,000 in community development funds to rehabilitate the depot; they say Yocum has an option to buy the depot and is negotiating with a national cafeteria chain to locate a restaurant there.

June 1979: A Columbia developer, Renaissance Renovation and Development, contracts to buy the depot from Kansas City Southern Industries, with plans to develop it as a restaurant and retail center; the developer eventually is unable to land enough investors to seal the deal.

March 1980: The depot is sold to another Columbia developer, Innovative Management and Investment Inc.

May 1983: A Joplin business couple who own a downtown women’s fashion store, Larry and Linda Fullerton, buy the depot.

February 1984: Emerald City Investors Inc., whose chief investor is a Girard, Kan., printing company owner, buys the depot.

September 1984: The city of Joplin tags the building as a dangerous structure because it has been left open to vandals and transients. Demolition is staved off a few months later when the owner boards up the doors.

1986: Wentworth resident Nancy Allman announces she has acquired the depot and is seeking a combination of public and private funds for restoration. Work proceeds gradually.

October 1989: Allman is sued by contractor David Glenn, who alleges that she failed to make payments on the depot’s restoration work. She files a countersuit alleging that he damaged the building and cost her a large sum of the development money.

July 1991: Subcontractors who filed claims that they had not been paid for work win court action to stall a foreclosure sale of the depot building that was sought by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, which holds a first mortgage on the property after lending $175,000 to Allman’s venture to start the restoration.

July 1998: The Department of Natural Resources secures the building after unsuccessfully trying to sell it at auction.

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