Passengers Arrived in Style
The brick Missouri Pacific Railroad
Passenger Station, completed in 1900, stood at 302 W. Douglas.
With its marble interior, it was the pride of Wichitans at the
turn of the century. The top two floors of the three story building
were used for division offices of the railroad and the ground
floor for passenger ticketing and waiting.
Behind the station stood the Dixie Lee mansion, an upscale brothel
known by everybody but seldom mentioned in the presence of ladies.
Dixie Lee, however, was proud of her "house" and tried
to get an injunction against the building of the station, claiming
the structure would depreciate the value of her property.
To that, the Feb. 3, 1900 Wichita Daily Beacon responded, "Plainly
speaking, the people generally prefer the new depot to a disreputable
The courts seemed to agree, and the pasenger station was constructed,
at a cost of $30,000.
The Missouri Pacific Railroad was the parent company of the St.
Louis, Fort Scott and Wichita Railroad, which came to Wichita
as its third railroad in 1883. The first train arrived July 4
of that year amid a grand civic celebration.
Due to the popularity of air travel after World War II, however,
passenger traffic declined. The depot was closed on Sunday, May
18, 1964. Later that year, the Missouri Pacific passenger station
was torn down. The property was purchased for the Garvey Center
which now stands on the site.
The Missouri Pacific Depot was torn down in 1964 to make way
for the Garvey office building. Photo courtesy of Wichita Public
The Garvey office building. Photo by V &