Stanhope Depot. (KQWC photo)

After nearly a year of fundraising efforts, the Stanhope Train Depot will be returning to that Hamilton County community this summer from the farm field where it’s sat idle for some four decades.

Rick Young is one of the organizers of the project which seeks to move the red, 140-year-old building home. “The budget was $122,000, and over time we’ve whittled it down to a total budget of $42,000,” Young says, “and then just recently we met that.” Back in the 1980s, the depot was moved to the Country Relics Little Village owned by the Carlson family, north of Stanhope in southern Hamilton County. Country Relics has since closed.

Young spearheaded the drive to bring the structure back to town, and he says raising the money was just the first hurdle. “Now, we have to have volunteers and we’re going to build a foundation to put it on,” Young says. “I talked with the mover yesterday and he’s coming soon to to give us some ideas on how we need to make that foundation.”

Plans are now in place to return the depot to Stanhope and spruce it up over the coming months. “Memorial Day weekend, we hope to have everything ready to build a foundation, and we’ll let that sit for a few weeks,” Young says. “Then, the third week of June is when we’re planning to move the depot home. We’re working with power companies because some of the lines will have to be moved. Then we will have a dedication at Watermelon Day on July 15th.”

To help out, financially or with the renovation project, visit the Stanhope Depot Facebook page.

(By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)