(March 22, 1900) – The wooden frame Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railroad depot at Stryker was destroyed by fire. Stryker was platted on September 19, 1853 beside the proposed Michigan Southern & Northern Indiana Railroad. The village was named for John Stryker of Rome, N.Y., a prominent M.S. & N.I. Railroad official.
Stryker was the first WilliamsbCounty community to have rail facilities, with trains running as early as January 1, 1855. In fact, had it not been for the survey of the railroad through the land now occupied by Stryker, the town likely would not exist. Stryker’s first railroad depot is believed to have been a small combination passenger/freight depot on the south side of the tracks. In 1876 this wooden frame depot was built on the north side of the railroad. On March 22, 1900, the depot was destroyed by fire caused by a spark from the smokestack of a steam locomotive.
Stryker’s existing brick and limestone passenger depot (now the Stryker Area Heritage Center) was built that year on or near the site of the 1876 depot. This vintage image of the 1876 Stryker depot is from the Fred Grisier collection–Courtesy of the Williams County, Ohio, Local History Exchange.
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