By Todd DeFeo

WATERTOWN, Tenn. – Laying about 45 miles east of Nashville, the first railroad to pass through town was the Nashville and Knoxville Railroad, which opened in 1885.

According to Lowell Afton Bogle’s “The History of Watertown,” the first train passing through the area was a nine-car passenger train on Dec. 12, 1889.

“The railroad was one of the great developments that made Watertown, as we knew it, possible,” Bogle wrote.

The Nashville and Knoxville Railroad was later integrated into the Tennessee Central Railway, which operated the track through town until Aug. 30, 1968, when the road went under.

The town’s wood depot was destroyed in a 1923 fire. Three years later, a brick building was opened. The brick building was razed in 1972.

The last passenger train rolled through Watertown in 1955.

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