The Keokuk Union Depot Foundation
Donations for the restoration of the Keokuk Union Depot are made through the Keokuk Union Depot Foundation, established in September 2012 as an Iowa not-for-profit corporation. The Keokuk Union Depot Foundation is a tax-exempt charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Your donation to the Depot Foundation is tax deductible per the I.R.S. determination letter of February 6, 2013.
The Foundation's principal goal has been to develop the funding for restoration of the Depot's roof. The aim has been to restore the building to its 1891 appearance by reconstructing the peaked central tower that was truncated around 1950; replacing the deteriorated shingled roofing (see photo at the bottom of this page) with clay tiles; restoring the gutters; and rebuilding the chimney. Restoric LLC, a Chicago firm specializing in restoration of historic buildings, prepared a detailed Historic Structure Report that guides the ongoing restoration work.
In 2014 the Jeffris Family Foundation of Janesville, Wisconsin, awarded a one-third matching grant of $333,000 toward the roof restoration. The Depot Foundation raised the remaining $667,000 to achieve the initial Capital Campaign goal of $1 million, allowing work on the central tower to begin in 2016 during the Depot's 125th anniversary year.
Significant grants by the Iowa Historical Resource Development Program (HDRP) were also instrumental in accelerating work on the building's eaves and construction of the central tower's apex. Grants by other foundations, both local and national, and by community groups have contributed much to the effort (see a partial list of recent grants at the bottom of this page).
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In 2014 Christen Sundquist Martin and her husband Matthew Martin, of Restoric LLC, created an O-gauge scale model of the restored Depot that has been displayed at various locations in Keokuk Tri-State area to raise awareness of the Depot project. The model features removable roof sections for an interior view, and compares the restored tile roof with the prior shingled roof.
To learn how the Martins painstakingly designed and assembled the model, read Christen's article in the February 2016 issue of the Keokuk Confluence, published by the Keokuk Cultural and Entertainment District (opens as a PDF file in a new window).
The Foundation maintains an account through which it can receive donations of stock. To arrange for such a donation:
Please include the following information in your inquiry:
A board member of the Foundation will contact you and provide you with the information you need to complete the transfer. Thank you for your generous support.
Keokuk Union Depot Foundation
This page presents photos of successive stages in the restoration of the Depot's roof, beginning with the 2014 announcement of the Jeffris Family Foundation's challenge grant through near-completion of the roof reconstruction and tiling in 2017. Tiling of two hips on the up-river end of the building will be completed in 2018, pending delivery of tiles of the correct angle.
A milestone in the roof restoration effort occurred on August 31, 2016, when many members of the community gathered to witness the reconstructed apex being lifted to its place atop the central tower. A round of applause broke out as it came to rest! McDowell Crane & Rigging, Inc. of Keokuk donated the labor and equipment for this operation.
Your Donation Is Welcome
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Your donation toward the preservation of the Depot is always supplemented by the work of our loyal corps of volunteers, whose labors help to reduce the cost of any project. To review the progress of restoration efforts by both volunteers and special contractors, visit our Preservation Activity page.
Local Questers groups have granted more than $14,000 toward restoration of the waiting room's windows, interior paneling, and doorways, a project completed in 2015. (The Questers are an organization devoted to the preservation of historical buildings, sites and artifacts.)
Other interior work awaiting funding includes restoring the ticket office to its earlier appearance. As the photo above shows, some of the wood paneling had been removed to provide access from the waiting room. Originally, however, there were only the two ticket windows on either side and the train bulletin board on the front; access was through a smaller door at the far end. Renovation of the platform umbrella (train shed) is a future exterior project to be separately funded.
Resources on This Site
Recent Grants to the Depot Restoration Effort