St. Joe, AR

Service Date: 1902

Station Number 155

Depot 18 x 72

St. Joe is located along US Highway 65, and the depot there has been completely restored by a local civic group. The station is right along the highway and a good place to stop on a Saturday and see the museum inside. St. Joe was in the heart of the zinc mining district, and there were three ore transfer platforms at this station for loading zinc ore. For a short time in 1902, it was the terminus of the St. Louis & North Arkansas Railroad's project to extend the line from Harrison to at least Leslie. Gilbert soon took over the terminus status, which lasted until the Buffalo River Bridge truss spans could be erected over the river, allowing tracklaying to proceed to Marshall and Leslie. St. Joe also was a shipping point for railroad ties and other timbers, and it remained so for many years after the railroad was abandoned south of Harrison. Ties were trucked to Harrison or points on the Missouri Pacific to be loaded in gondola cars for rail shipment.

There was also a freight platform near the US Highway 65 crossing of the main line and siding. The photo shows a simple crossbuck for the US Highway 65 grade crossing instead of the flashing lights used at Pindall and several other highway crossings.

St. Joe was originally located some distance away from the railroad survey, so when the track was built the town moved to be near the railroad and depot. This was not unusual when a railroad went through new territory.

The siding shown in the track diagram was at one time longer than the 1945 version of the diagram, and had another ore dock and an oil tank railroad south of the US Highway 65 crossing. At one time there was a mine office located between the highway and depot and between the depot and the US Highway 65 crossing, indicating the importance of this shipping point.

St. Joe has restored its depot and it is available for visitation to see what an M&NA depot looked like during the railroad’s operating history. Check to see if it’s open and visit if you can.