Station: Harrisville, Michigan

DM Harrisville DepotDM Harrisville Depot 2005Harrisville is located along the Lake Huron Shore, halfway between Tawas City and Alpena.  It is the county seat for Alcona County.  Originally bypassed by the Detroit, Bay City & Alpena for an inland route via West Harrisville, the DBC&A later changed their route closer to the lake and Harrisville began receiving rail service in 1901.

According to local lore posted at the depot, the D&M made its first regularly scheduled passenger run into Harrisville on Sunday, December 15, 1901.  The cut stone station was completed in January, 1902.  That first passenger train, the southbound mail number 10, ran on a new stretch of track from Black River to Lincoln Junction, including Harrisville and other towns along the shore, rather than the inland route via Lincoln (then West Harrisville).

The depot at Harrisville was a busy place.  A 1906 timetable shows that four southbound trains and three northbound trains arrived and departed daily (for Bay City, Alpena and Cheboygan).  For those that could afford automobiles at the time, the trip look two days, including stops for sleep along the way.  On March 31, 1952 the final D&M passenger train passed by the station.

The depot may have been the only witness to one of Harrisville's unsolved murders.  In March, 1915, a section man for the D&M found a pocket knife and wallet while on his way to work at the section shed at Harrisville.  A "rather large" pool of blood was located between the main and east side track and the body of Henry Pyne was found near the Washington Street crossing, some 400 feet north of the depot.  An investigation followed and Pyne's brother was accused of the crime but no trial ever occurred and files do not indicate that anyone was apprehended.

Photo info/credit:  Top, a postcard view shortly after the depot was built. 2nd photo, this is a photo of the restored depot iln 2002 [Dale Berry]

Harrisville had a water tower across from the depot with a standpipe for filling locomotives (see photo). Remants of the tower exist today.


  • Johnson Seed Co. (D&M) 1910
  • J. Van Buskirk Planning Mill (D&M) 1910
  • G. L. Cowell Saw Mill (Pre-railroad on lake) 1887 - 75,000 board feet per 10 hours