The Fort Payne Depot Museum was erected in 1891. It is housed in a unique Richardsonian Romanesque building of locally quarried pink and white sandstone. It served as a depot for the Alabama-Great Southern Railroad for approximately 85 years. Thousands of people passed through the doors during its life as a passenger station. A group of preservation-minded citizens succeeded in acquiring the building from Norfolk-Southern Railway in 1985, when the railroad announced plans to close and dismantle the Fort Payne Depot. Funds were raised locally for stabilization and restoration of the building. It opened as a museum in 1986.
Today, the Fort Payne Depot Museum serves 2500-3500 visitors annually, and houses several permanent and rotating exhibits in two separate buildings. Both properties are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Visitors can view our collections of local DeKalb County and Fort Payne history in the Local History room. The Gussie Killian Collection contains extensive examples of Native American basketry, pottery, and artifacts housed in the north room. Our south room displays the L.A. Dobbs exhibit along with memorabilia from the Civil War, World War I and II, as well as the Vietnam War. The Depot Annex located in the Fort Payne Coal & Iron Building houses our rotating exhibits along with our substantial collection of dioramas by Steve Fiora.
The Fort Payne Depot Museum strives to maintain the preservation of its collections for future generations. Visitors are enriched through the education of our unique local history by our varied exhibits and artifacts. The outreach of the museum includes programs for historical societies, civic groups, school children, scouts, and other parties. Being the only museum in DeKalb County allows for our interaction with visitors to be shared with other local preservation groups. Future expansion for our museum includes interactive educational exhibits, workshops that relate to our special history, and reconditioning the property, to envelop the community while furthering the museum’s existence.
Admission Rates (effective Sept.1, 2012)
Adults - $3 per person - ages 19 years old and above
Students - $1 per person - ages 7-18 years old
Free Admission - 6 years old and younger