Kingston Railroad Station, Railroad Avenue, West Kingston, Washington County, RI
Significance: The Kingston Railroad Station is significant for its vernacular architectural quality and design, and for its role in the history of railroad transportation in Rhode Island. It has recently been the focus of community and institutional attention and preservation action. The station, in continuous use as a railroad depot since it was built in 1875, is a rare and well-preserved example of a late nineteenth century rural railroad station. It is the only surviving building erected by the New York, Providence, and Boston Railroad Company still in active use. The wood frame railroad station has served as a community anchor and landmark since it was built. The construction of the station fostered the development of the village of West Kingston, including the establishment of the West Kingston Post Office ca. 1875, the siting of the Rhode Island College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (later University of Rhode Island) in 1889, and the relocation of the county courthouse from Kingston Village in 1894. When the building fell into disrepair in the 1970s, the Friends of the Kingston Station was formed to preserve and restore the station. The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977. After a devastating fire on December 12, 1988, the Friends rallied to refurbish the station. At the behest of the Friends, the Town of South Kingston, both U.S. Senators of Rhode Island and their staffs, and others, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation with funding from the Federal Highway Administration agreed to undertake a project to rehabilitate the station and redevelop the surrounding area.
Unprocessed Field note material exists for this structure: N316
Survey number: HABS RI-400
National Register of Historic Places NRIS Number: 78000018