|(Courtesy New Electric Railway Volume 4)|
But it's still a topic that interests me nevertheless. Yesterday, while thumbing through a copy of Harry Christiansen's New Lake Shore Electric Volume 4 in the library, I saw the photo at left depicting the former LSE depot in Vermilion. A the time the book was published in 1978, the depot had been converted into a bank. Since this was all new to me, I made a copy of the photo in the book and decided to watch for the building the next time I was in Vermilion.
The next time came soon, since the spouse wanted to take a Sunday drive and we ended up out that way anyway. Since another car was already sitting directly across from the building (which now is the home of Lakeshore Counseling Services), I parked on the nearest side street (leaving the disinterested spouse in the car) and ambled over to grab a quick shot.
I noticed another gentleman standing around in the area of the building, and I took steps to avoid getting him in my shot. He disappeared around the back of the former depot, so I quickly grabbed a few photos.
While taking one last shot from a different angle, out of the corner of my eye I could see the man seemingly headed straight towards me. Suddenly I head a voice behind me. "That building must have some significance if you're taking a picture of it."
I had just started to explain what little I knew about the former depot, when the gentleman's face broke into a large grin – and I realized he was pulling my leg! He was a big Lake Shore Electric aficionado, and in fact was on his way home from Pennsylvania where he and his wife had just visited the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum. Interestingly, he was retracing the route of the LSE and snapping pictures along the way of any extant structures (depots, bridge abutments, etc.) He had just finished shooting the former Vermilion Depot before I got there.
The gentleman and I had a nice chit-chat about what LSE artifacts existed west of Vermilion and we shook hands before departing.
As I walked back to my car and bored, waiting spouse, I saw his wife waiting in his car.
Oh well – that's the price they pay for marrying history buffs.
What about my photos? With all the distractions, I didn't even shoot the correct side of the building for a proper 'then and now' shot! But here's one from roughly the same angle (below) courtesy of the Wiki site on the LSE.
website to see how the depot looked in its heyday.