Historic Structures

Building Description Bend Railroad Depot - Oregon Trunk Railway Passenger Station, Bend Oregon

The Oregon Trunk Railway Passenger Station is a rectangular single story masonry building measuring 30 by 93 feet which includes a porte cochere; the actual size of the enclosed building is 30 by 73.5 feet. The passenger station is oriented with its long axis parallel to the rails, which run north and south, and has the traditional telegrapher's bay on the track side (east). The bay projects five feet from the main volume of the building and is fourteen-feet five-inches in length. The name BEND is carved in stone in large capital letters above the bay windows.

The entire building, including the porte cochere, is topped by a hipped roof with extended overhanging eaves that are supported by large Craftsman style brackets. Two corbelled brick chimneys pierce the roof on the north and south ends of the building.

Typical windows are seven feet by fort-two inches and originally had twenty panes over one. They are double hung, have a large stone lintel above the window, a stone sill below, and are located four feet above the foundation. In 1988, the top ten panes of window glass were replaced by four vertical wooden boards. The four windows in the bay are seven feet by twenty eight inches. There are two forty-eight by forty-four inch windows located in the office area on the west elevation. A small six foot by two feet six inch window is the only opening on the north elevation. Originally the north window had sixteen small panes of glass, but they were covered by vertical boards in 1988.

Typical doors are eight by four feet. The original transoms were four by two feet and had ten panes of glass. The glass was replaced by vertical boards in 1988. An entry door into the original waiting room is centered on the south end and is protected by the elements by the porte cochere. Three doors access the interior on the west side allowing entry into the passenger waiting area (south end), the ticket office/telegraph office (middle), and the freight room. There are also three doors on the east (track side) elevation, one south of the telegrapher's bay, one north of the bay, and one into the freight room. The passenger area door and freight room door have been blocked and covered with vertical siding.

A five inch wide belt course projects out four inches from the body of the building, fortythree inches up from the base of the building. The floors are finished concrete slabs. The building is constructed of a soft local light tan stone (now darkened by age) called tuff.

The original plans for the passenger station divided the interior into four major spaces. These were the men's waiting room, the women's waiting room, the office and telegrapher's bay, and the baggage room. When interior plumbing was installed in 1923, two existing five-feet x six-feet rooms immediately behind the central office became the rest rooms. The original sources of heat were stoves in the two waiting rooms and the office; the baggage room was unheated and presumably unprotected from freezing temperatures. The original ticket counter was located at the rear of the office in the hallway between the two waiting rooms.

The plans called for fourteen-foot two-inch plaster ceilings in the office, the baggage room, and the spaces that were to become rest rooms. In the two waiting rooms, the massive framing members designed to support a ceramic tile roof were exposed. The roof sheathing in the exposed areas was two-inch by six-inch side-match flooring. This was varnished. The twelve-inch by sixteen-inch fir roof beam and the four-inch by twelve-inch fir rafters were also varnished. The interior sides of the stone perimeter walls were firred and lathed, and then plastered. At the juncture of the walls and ceiling, the builders placed a six-inch fir cove molding that was varnished to match the ceiling and framing members. Matching varnished moldings surrounded the twenty-over-one double hung windows, and each window was capped with a cornice molding. Interior doors had four panels, and exterior doors had large central glass lights. Finally, all interior walls in the public spaces of the passenger station were wainscotted with one-inch by four-inch clear fir ceiling which was varnished to match the rest of the woodwork.

The Oregon Trunk Railway began to alter the Bend passenger station in 1923, just eleven years after its completion. The most significant alterations of the historic fabric are the extensive changes to the interior. These include the two sets of interior ceilings installed in the waiting rooms in 1942 and in 1958, and the complete remodeling of the interior in 1958 when the building was converted to offices.

In July of 1995, a surface survey of the depot site revealed little evidence of the previous (now demolished) structures. Even the freight warehouse, which once covered 12,480 square feet, left little evidence of its original location. Similarly, the concrete foundation of the water tank is no longer extant on the surface of the site, even though its former location is quite apparent in historic photographs. In 1999, the site was changed significantly by highway development. The passenger station and the freight station were removed, and the ground contours wiere altered to accommodate a new highway.