the community of Amboy, Illinois. We are located about 42 miles south of
Rockford, and just over 100 miles west of Chicago.
Amboy is known for the Depot Museum and for the
annual Depot Days Car, Truck & Motorcycle show. The Depot Museum was a
former rail station. It was
constructed as a headquarters building for the Illinois Central Railroad as well
as a public train station for the fledgling City of Amboy in 1876. It was
designed by railroad staff architect James Nocquet after a fire destroyed the
original Illinois Central Offices on the site. The building was added to the
U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 1992. The building operated as
Division headquarters until 1894. After 1894 the rail line through Amboy was
downgraded in importance by the railroad and the division headquarters moved
elsewhere. Today, the Depot is operated as a public museum. The museum grounds
include the Depot, which houses artifacts and exhibits, and several
outbuildings. Also on the property is a steam locomotive which, in 1976, was the
last steam engine in the U.S. to be commissioned for regular freight service.
When the railroad left Amboy, the City purchased the Depot building and, more
recently, the freight house. The City appointed a Depot commission and they
started Depot Days to raise funds to refurbish the Depot. Today the Depot Museum
is complete, the Freight house nearly has been restored, and a one-room
schoolhouse has been recently completed.
We welcome all visitors to our friendly city. Take some time to get to know
Amboy's history. Then you can shop in any of our downtown stores and dine in at
one of our delicious restaurants. You will discover friendly people, excellent
service, and that delightful small town charm.