South Lyon’s Railroads and the Witch’s Hat Depot

In 1871, only two years before South Lyon’s incorporation as a city, the Detroit, Lansing and Northern Railroad came to town.  The population was 400 at this time.  This created a boost in business and caused rapid growth.  With the arrival of the Grand Trunk Western Railway, in 1884, the population doubled from 13 years earlier. (Images of America) The Grand Trunk Western Railway intersected with the Pere Marquette Railroad. (Grand Trunk Western)  The town’s population peaked for a time with 1,100 residents. After this growth in population, a local newspaper, union school, a stave mill, three churches, two grocery stores and many more businesses arrived.(Images of America)

This is a picture of the Witch's Hat Depot where it used to be located. (Trail Towns Tour-An Easy Ride Into History)
This is a picture of the Witch’s Hat Depot where it used to be located.
(Trail Towns Tour-An Easy Ride Into History)

The Pere Marquette Railroad burned down in 1908.  To replace it, the Witch’s Hat Depot was built in 1909. This depot received its unique name due to its close resemblance to a witch’s hat. South Lyon acquired it in 1976. It was It is now a museum dedicated South Lyon’s history and is the meeting spot for the South Lyon Historical Society. The Witch’s Hat Depot is located in the Historical Village which is home to the Washburn School, which is an old one room school house and the Little Village Chapel, a 1930’s kit building.(Images of America)

South-Lyon-Historic-Village
South Lyon Historic Village which is home to the Washburn School, the Little Village Chapel, and the Witch’s Hat Depot. (Real Estate One, Johnstone & Johnstone and Max Broock.)
GTW South Lyon Witch Hat Depot
A current picture of the Witch’s Hat Depot. (Grand Trunk Western, South Lyon “Witch Hat” Depot.)