Today, I am sharing some more of my recent visit in August to St. Louis with you. Hope you enjoy.
St. Louis Union Station, a National Historic Landmark, is a former passenger train terminal in St. Louis, Missouri. Once the world's largest and busiest train station, it was converted in the early 1980s into a luxury hotel, shopping center, and entertainment complex. Today, it is one of the city's major tourist attractions and an easy trek on the Metro from downtown. (please click on photographs to enlarge them)
Union Station's headhouse and midway are constructed of Indiana limestone and initially included 32 tracks under its vast trainshed terminating in the stub-end terminal.
At its height, the station combined the St. Louis passenger services of 22 railroads. At its opening, it was the world's largest and busiest railroad station and its trainshed was the largest roof span in the world. In 1903, the station was expanded to accommodate visitors to the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair.
In the 1940s, it handled 100,000 passengers a day. The famous photograph of Harry S. Truman holding aloft the erroneous Chicago Tribune headline, "Dewey Defeats Truman," was shot at the station as Truman headed back to Washington, DC from Independence, Missouri after the 1948 Presidential election.
As railroad passenger services declined in the 1950s and 1960s, the massive station became obsolete and too expensive to maintain for its original purpose. With the takeover of national rail passenger service by Amtrak in 1971, passenger train service to St. Louis was reduced to only three trains a day. In 1978, the last train left St. Louis Union Station. Amtrak trains are now located one block to the east in St. Louis' Gateway Transportation Center which houses Amtrak, Greyhound Buses, and inner city Metro Buses and subway and rail.
I will post more photographs in the future of the area that was once the trainshed and housed the tracks that now has restaurants and shops . The Metro rail drops you off across the street and many a sports fan stops off here prior to sporting events. The day we visited there was an early afternoon Cardinal baseball game and many of their avid fans were stopping off for lunch. Busch Stadium is located two stops down the line toward downtown.
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