The showpiece of the Historical Village is the original railroad depot building that served Sylvania residents for 98 years, from 1858 to 1956. It is the oldest train depot in existance in the State of Ohio.
Built in 1858 and originally located behind what is now Southbriar Shopping Center on Main Street, the Sylvania Depot was moved to the Village in March 1997. The building has not been altered except to relocate two windows and a door for better viewing.
Almost since its inception, Sylvania has had a close and vital association with rail transportation. In 1835, the Erie & Kalamazoo Railroad Company won the right to construct a rail line between Toledo, Ohio, and Adrian, MI. The rail line was the first line west of the Allegheny Mountains. The first railroad cars were pulled by horses!
Sylvania was chosen for a railroad stop because of its abundant water supply. The first locomotive traveled through Sylvania in 1837, and an advertisement in the Toledo Blade that year proclaimed: "Emigrants and others destined for Indiana, Illinois and western Michigan WILL SAVE TWO DAYS and the corresponding expense by taking this route in preference to the more lengthened, tedious and expensive route heretofore traveled."
The cost for the Toledo-to-Sylvania leg of the journey was $.50; from
Sylvania to Adrian, $1.50. In Adrian, the train connected with the Michigan Southern Railway but travelers, especially ladies, were cautioned to be on their guard.
Railroad artifacts are displayed inside the building.
Sign Sponsored By: Montgomery-Nichols Agency