Throwback Thursday: Tiburon train yard

Point Tiburon train depot
Point Tiburon Train Yard.

Who knew the tony Marin County town of Tiburon was once dominated by a gritty railroad depot.

But from 1884 through the mid 1960s rail helped define Tiburon. Today, most rail remnants are long gone, but part of the old depot still exists and has become a museum that includes a working model of the old train yard.

The San Francisco & North Pacific Railroad was founded by Peter Donahue, a San Francisco industrialist, and he eventually made Point Tiburon the southern terminus of his rail empire. By 1907, Donahue merged with five North Coast railroads to become the Northwestern Pacific Railroad, a subsidiary of Southern Pacific Company. The 400 miles of track connected Eureka and San Francisco via ferries and barges and thrived for decades carrying passengers and goods that helped build San Francisco.

But by the mid 1960s rail was on its last legs the 42-acre yard closed in 1967. In the following years condominiums, businesses and the town center were built on the site, while the docks and piers became a shoreline park. The depot has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior.



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