The old Gulf, Mobile & Ohio train Depot is home to the Records Management Section of the MDAH Archives and Record Services Division. Normal hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
This passenger depot was originally built in 1927 for the New Orleans Great Northern Railroad Company, which merged with the Mobile & Ohio Railroad in 1938 to become the Gulf, Mobile & Ohio Railroad. Service ceased in 1972 when the rail line was sold to Illinois Central. The depot building was purchased by the state in 1984 and restored to house offices of the Department of Archives and History.
Just to the east of the Depot sits the “Merci Train” given to the state of Mississippi by France after World War II. The wooden train cars were given in gratitude to each state by France after the war. Few of the boxcars still exist.
Decades of exposure to the elements had taken its toll on the boxcar, which had been located behind the War Memorial Building. A Community Heritage Preservation Program grant from MDAH allowed damaged siding and missing placards to be replaced and the boxcar to be restored and relocated.
The car was moved onto a section of specially constructed narrow track under a new aluminum canopy, and interpretive signage covering the history of the Merci Trains was created and installed, along with a concrete platform and metal benches.
Directions: The GM&O Depot is located at 618 East Pearl Street, Jackson, MS 39201. Take the High Street exit (96B) off I-55. Take High Street west, then turn left onto Jefferson and right onto Pearl Street.