The area around Charlevoix became a popular summer resort starting in the late 1870s with the establishment of Bay View in 1877, the Charlevoix Summer Resort (now the Belvedere Club) in 1878, and the Chicago Summer Resort (now the Chicago Club) in 1880. In response to the increase in traffic, in the early 1890s the Chicago and West Michigan Railroad extended its line from Traverse City north to Petoskey.
The railroad waited until 1892, 12 years after the rail line went through to Petoskey to construct the train depot because they believed most visitors traveled to Charlevoix by boat. After the war, the Pere Marquette merged into the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway in 1947, and service to Charlevoix was gradually scaled back. Passenger train service to Charlevoix was completely discontinued in 1962. Rail freight runs continued until 1982, and the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway abandoned all its lines in northern Michigan. Shortly after the railroad tracks and the bridge over the canal leading into Lake Charlevoix was removed.
In the 1980s, the Charlevoix Yacht Club occupied the building. In 1992, Mr. & Mrs. Robert Pew donated the Charlevoix Railroad Station to the Charlevoix Historical Society. The Depot building was restored by the society and is now a venue for Historical Society events and programs.
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