This depot, originally the Rock Island Lines New Passenger Station and Division Office Building. Was erected as a joint venture of
the Rock Island, and the Minneapolis and St. Louis Railroads in
1912 for $50,000.00.
Over the years, it has been owned by the M. & St. L. and by
the Chicago and North Western Transportation Company. It was closed in 1984 and was sold to the Codington County Historical Society, Inc. for use as a museum in 1985.
Although Watertown's first depot was a box car, the first depot building was located one block east of this marker. Watertown
grew outward from this site. Original town lots were platted
parallel to the railroad tracks passing by these depots.
There was much activity at this depot during its earliest years,
when much of West River South Dakota was being settled. Many World Wars I and II troops passed through its doors in later
years. Although much freight and mail were handled, it was a main passenger station.
This building and site are listed on the National Register of
Historic Places by the United States Park Service, Department
of the Interior.