Alder Rail Road Depot (ca. 1904)

Alder Railroad Depot
Alder Railroad Depot

In 1904 a railroad was built in the busy town of Alder to haul logs and supplies.

An attractive train depot was built around the same time between the Milwaukee/Chicago/St. Paul/Tacoma Railroad (MILW) and Highway 7.

George Tatro was the depot agent and he and his family lived on the top floor.

An interesting note —  George was blind, but could operate the telegraph and relied on his wife Laura to do the rest of the depot agent duties.

Alder Railroad depot waiting for the next train
Alder Railroad depot waiting for the next train

Also, Kathleen Boettcher, when she was a little girl, used to hang up the mail bag for the train for ten cents a trip.

Depot agents over the years included: Earl Pravitz Sr., George Tatro, Chas. Hughes, Ray Kennear, and Earl Pravitz Jr.

John Fraser was also in charge of the depot from the late 30s until the flooding of Alder lake.

Information taken from Old Alder by Joe Sander and Rod Scurlock, photos courtesy of Pat Van Eaton.

Click on images to enlarge.






Alder Railroad ties being installed
Alder Railroad ties being installed


4 responses to “Alder Rail Road Depot (ca. 1904)”

  1. My grand father John Fraser was in charge of the depot for many years, from the late 1930’s until the flooding of the lake. I spent much of my childhood at the depot. my big reward was relaying the messages with the message Y to the train when it passed. I started the first grade at Alder school in 1939. He was relocated at Elbe at the home on the lake about a mile before the town.


  2. I want to thank you for posting my Facebook page, Olde Towne Kapowsin.I have a group on Facebook also,called,The Kapowsin Group.I also try to share history about other towns around this area.I would like to know if anyone knows how to get a grant to make some plaques to post at Kapowsin Lake with photos and about the town’s history?
    Thanks for your time.


    • No problem. And thanks for the information about The Kapowsin Group. 🙂 Are you a non-profit group? If you’re 501c3 there are more grants to apply for. Also, you might consider joining the Heritage League (and Washington historical group) that keeps everyone posted about various historical things, and sometimes has fundraising classes.


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