Station: Raco, MI
Raco, in Chippewa County, was 20 miles west of Sault Ste. Marie union station on the DSS&A Soo Branch. The town was settled in 1913 with a sawmill. It was named for the initials of the Richardson & Avery Company, which owned the sawmill. [MPN]
"Duff" switch was located 1/10th of a mile east of Raco depot.
Raco Army Airfield was located here sometime before World War II. Its use was likely to provide protection for the Soo Locks at Sault Ste. Marie. It was also used as a refueling base for aircraft headed for Alaska. The air base was acquired by the United States government after World War II began and expanded. The base became inactive beginning in 1945. It became an anti-aircraft artillery site. In 1960, the site became a BOMARC missile base, It was known as the Kincheloe AFB BOMARC site. The missiles were inactivated in July, 1972 and the facility was closed. Today, it is a winter automobile test center for vehicles and components in harsh winter conditions. No original buildings remain other than concrete foundations for launcher shelters. [Wiki]
When the DSS&A and Soo Line merged, most of the DSS&A Soo Branch was abandoned but the line was maintained from Soo Junction east to Raco to service the government installations here.
1887 - The DSS&A completes their Soo Branch, from Soo Junction to Sault Ste. Marie, passing through what will become Raco.
1913 - Raco is settled with a saw mill.
1930's - Raco Army Airfield is established here to protect the Soo Locks.
1942 - Air base is acquired by the US Government
1945 - The Raco base became an anti-aircraft artillery site.
1960 - Site becomes a BOMARC missile base
1961 - Soo branch abandoned Raco to Sault Ste. Marie, service to Raco maintained from west.
1972 - Missles are deactivated, facility closed.
1977 - Soo Line abandons branch from Soo Junction to Raco.