Ste. Genevieve


Ste. Genevieve (often shortened to “Ste. Gen” by locals) was founded in 1735 by French-Canadians from Illinois and is the oldest permanent European settlement in Missouri.  The M-I was the first railroad into Ste. Gen and the Frisco came through in 1904.  For many years, the Frisco shared depot space with the M-I.  In 1938, the Frisco erected their own depot directly across the tracks.

Depiction of Ste. Genevieve in the dome of the Missouri capitol at Jefferson City.
M-I depot at Ste. Genevieve. Photo credit unknown.
Later image with the M-I depot on the left and the Frisco depot on the right. Photo credit unknown.
Flooding of the Mississippi River north of the Ste. Genevieve depot on March 16, 1973. The image shows MoPac Trainmaster M.A. Core walking along the Frisco right-of-way while MP units #357 and #349 approach on the adjacent M-I track. The depot, which is behind the photographer, ended up with 43″ of muddy Mississippi water inside. Photo by C.H. Geletzke, Jr. 
Tracks depart southward (and westward) from the Ste. Gen depot, crossing South Main Street and a small creek (Gabouri Creek’s south fork). Google Earth image
Track schematic for Ste. Genevieve

Layout adaptation…

Trains depart southward from Middle Yard, cross Main Street on the overpass bridge and arrive at the Ste. Genevieve depot where they can pick up orders and the occasional passenger.

There are several industries to be switched south of the depot and past the interlock plant: L.J. Donze Oil Company, the Home Coal Company and the F.X. Falk Lumber Company. Passage thru the interlock requires a call to the tower operator to request a clear signal. The Frisco interchange track lies across from the depot.

Typical traffic & shipments…

Flats and boxcars deliver lumber to fuel the post war housing boom in eastern Missouri. With the layout operating during Spring, the winter use of coal for heating homes has declined a bit and the Home Coal Co. is relatively quiet. Donze Oil maintains a steady fuel oil business with multiple storage tanks on site.

Three of four lime plants in Ste. Genevieve were switched by the M-I. The fourth, Western Lime Works, was switched by the Frisco. However, all of its coal originated in the southern Illinois coal fields and was routed on the MoPac and the M-I.