Join the Campaign to Complete the Depot's Roof Restoration!
In 2014 the Jeffris Family Foundation awarded a $333,000 one-third matching grant toward the estimated $1 million cost of restoring the Depot's clay tile roof and central tower. By the Depot's 125th anniversary in July 2016 it was evident that the Keokuk Union Depot Foundation would achieve the remaining $667,000. The State Historical Society of Iowa, Historical Resource Development Program has also supported this project with significant grants. Consequently, work commenced on reconstruction of the Depot's central tower in the summer of 2016.
The capital campaign continues into 2017 because additional funds must be raised to address needs that came to light during the restoration work. This letter from Depot Foundation president Janet M. Smith explains the need to continue the Capital Campaign. Click here to download the Capital Campaign pledge form. (For a fillable PDF form, click here.) For more information visit the "Depot 125" Capital Campaign page.
You can also support the Depot by registering with Amazon Smile. Once you set up "Keokuk Union Depot Foundation"
The Keokuk Union Depot Foundation
Donations for the restoration of the Keokuk Union Depot are made through the Keokuk Union Depot Foundation, established in September 2012 as an Iowa not-for-profit corporation. Your donation to the Depot Foundation is tax-deductible. The Keokuk Union Depot Foundation is a tax-exempt charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. To view the Depot Foundation's Form 990 return for 2015, click here (opens as PDF in a separate window).
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The Foundation's principal goal has been to develop the funding for restoration of the Depot's roof. The aim has been to restore the building to its 1891 appearance by reconstructing the peaked central tower that was truncated around 1950; replacing the deteriorated shingled roofing (see photo at the bottom of this page) with clay tiles; restoring the gutters; and rebuilding the chimney. Restoric LLC, a Chicago firm specializing in restoration of historic buildings, prepared a detailed Historic Structures Report that guides the ongoing restoration work.
In 2014 the Jeffris Family Foundation of Janesville, Wisconsin, awarded a one-third matching grant of $333,000 toward the roof restoration. The Depot Foundation raised the remaining $667,000 to achieve the initial Capital Campaign goal of $1 million, allowing work on the central tower to begin in 2016\ during the Depot's 125th anniversary year. Significant grants by the Iowa Historical Resource Development Program (HRDP) also instrumental in accelerating work on the building's eaves and construction of the central tower's apex. The Capital Campaign continues into 2017 to raise the resources for additional needs that surfaced during restoration activities.
In 2014 Christen Sundquist Martin and her husband Matthew Martin, of Restoric LLC, created an O-gauge scale model of the restored Depot that has been displayed at various locations in Keokuk to raise awareness of the Depot project. The model features removable roof sections for an interior view, and compares the restored tile roof with the prior shingled roof. To learn how the Martins painstakingly designed and assembled the model, read Christen's article in the February 2016 issue of the Keokuk Confluence, published by the Keokuk Cultural and Entertainment District (opens as a PDF file in a new window).
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Your donation toward the preservation of the Depot is always supplemented by the work of our loyal corps of volunteers, whose labors help to reduce the cost of any project. To review the progress of restoration efforts by both volunteers and special contractors, visit our Preservation Activity page.
The Questers have granted more than $14,000 toward restoration of the waiting room's interior paneling and doorways, a project completed in 2015. Other interior work awaiting funding includes restoring the ticket office to its earlier appearance. As the photo below shows, some of the wood paneling had been removed to provide access from the waiting room. Originally, however, there were only the two ticket windows on either side and the train bulletin board on the front; access was through a smaller door at the far end. Renovation of the platform umbrella (train shed) is a future exterior project to be separately funded.
Pictured on this page are some of the events the Depot has hosted during the past several years. The waiting room is equipped with heat, air conditioning, and rest rooms. Although work remains to be done, the building is usable year-round and available for a variety of community events such as concerts, class and family reunions, weddings or wedding receptions, showers, and group meetings. A schedule of recent and forthcoming events at the Depot appears at the top of our home page.
Pledge Toward the Roof Project
You can support the Keokuk Union Depot restoration effort by by pledging to the capital fund drive for restoration of the roof. You can also order gift and souvenir items through the Depot Gift Shoppe.
Keokuk Union Depot Foundation
The Foundation maintains an account through which it can receive donations of stock. To arrange for such a donation:
Please include the following information in your inquiry:
A board member of the Foundation will contact you and provide you with the information you need to complete the transfer. Thank you for your generous support.