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PCHS Players perform here

Theater patrons can get a different look at local history Thursday when the Pulaski County High School Players perform at the recently renovated depot/train station that served the area many years.

Seating is limited as the high school thespians put on an original production of “Arrivals and Departures: A Short History of the Pulaski Train Station,” at, of course, the train station.

The PCHS Drama Department has produced numerous productions at the school over the years that appealed to and entertained country residents.

Railroad history in Pulaski dates back to 1854 when ribbons of steel slowly progressed from the east toward the Virginia-Tennessee line, with stops in Dublin and Martin’s Tank, now the town of Pulaski.

There were stops in Big Lick (Roanoke) and Central Depot (Radford) on the line headed west that climbed the mountains and along streams and rivers to eventually carry tons of cargo and thousands of passengers for coast to coast.

The train station on Washington Avenue was built in April 1888. It served passengers and mail service until April 30, 1971 when the Norfolk & Western RR halted passenger service.

The station later served the railroad company as storage areas, offices and dispatching for various crews.

Falling into disrepair, the building slowly deteriorated until portions of the roof and other areas began decaying and caving in.

Pulaski Town Council stepped forward to seek ownership, then proceeded with renovations that eventually led to the Raymond Ratcliff Museum.

The station, museum and many historic artifacts from early days of the town and county were lost in a Nov. 17, 2008 fire. After being restored in 1994.

History will come alive at the station Thursday evening, thanks to the PCHS Players and staff.