The Salem Depot was built in 1847 by the Eastern Railroad (later absorbed by the Boston and Maine) soon after it reached Salem in 1839.The old station sat at the corner of Washington and Norman streets where Riley Plaza is now. The old depot with its granite facade resembled a medieval castle. It was designed by prominent Boston architect Gridley Bryant(1816-1899) and built in 1847.
It was demolished in the fall of 1954 and spring of 1955, when the Railroad tunnel was being extended and downtown rail crossings eliminated. In 1958 the site was paved over to become Riley Plaza.
A model of the Salem Depot was completed by Leon Masse and displayed for years at the Chamber of Commerce in the Old Town Hall, but has since been moved to Historic Salem’s Bowditch House.