Museum expansion chugs along

As ground breaks behind the Newton Depot, a vision of trains from the 1920s haunt the grounds. Newton was the mid-point on the Narrow Gauge Railroad. The path transfered materials from town to town in North Carolina.

Rail cars returned soldiers and family members from far away, and now the depot will be home to a new generation of learning.

The original depot, opened in 1924, was a hub on the information super highway of its day. Now some 88 years later, the depot and grounds welcome a new pavilion to preserve history.

“The pavilion for us symbolizes where we were and how far we’ve come over the last 120 years of transportation,” Newton Depot Authority member of the Board of Directors Matthew Bumgarner.

The Newton Depot celebrates its second phase as board members and the city of Newton celebrate what Bumgarner hopes to be a first rate building for a first rate museum. The car barn or pavilion, once finished in early Spring of 2013 will house restored rail cars that are about 150 years old. The structure will also be the new educational location for the depot, Bumgarner said. His goal is to bring visitors from Newton and beyond.

To read more of this story, pick up the print edition of Catawba County's community newspaper, The Observer News Enterprise, at newsstands throughout the county.