Ogden’s Union Station has friendly ghosts from it’s rich history

Oct 30, 2023, 9:00 PM | Updated: Oct 31, 2023, 7:56 am

Ogden's Union Station exterior features brown bricks and a neon sign reading "Union Station"...

Ogden's Union Station exterior. (Ron Fox/Ogden State Railroad Museum and Library)

(Ron Fox/Ogden State Railroad Museum and Library)

OGDEN, Utah — Once upon a time, Union Station was one of Utah’s transportation hubs. Now it’s a museum and a great place to spot a ghost!

Museum Curator, Hope Eggett, says she and her co-workers can tell you some spooky stories of unexplained activity at the station.

“I’ve definitely experienced some weird things here. Usually, it’s footsteps, or laughter, or talking,” said Eggett. 

Spotting a lady in white upstairs in the Myra Powell Gallery is a common occurrence.  Even if she’s not making an appearance, her heavy, floral perfume can be smelled says Eggett. 

A ghost named Frank is their most active visitor. He was named after an employee who died in the station during the 1920s. Often, Frank gets blamed for a single chair set in the middle of a room with no explanation. 

According to Eggett, a lady in blue is a more mysterious ghost than the others, sightings are not common. Once, a young child saw her dancing on the stage in the Browning Theater when no one else could. 

The most active location for spotting ghosts seems to be the Grand Lobby.

“We started hearing really loud conversation in the lobby. So I stuck my head in the door, then it turned silent and there was nobody in the building. I start walking back and I can hear the chattering again.” Eggett recalled. 

Although the idea of ghosts can seem frightening, Egget assures they are friendly and a part of the Union Station experience. 

The history of Union Station

Before the station became a museum, it was a functioning terminal and Ogden was known as the “Junction City.” 

By 1870 ten trains operated daily through a temporary terminal in Ogden used for both the Union Pacific and the Central Pacific, according to Intermountain Stories. Eight years later, companies agreed to make operations more permanent by using the original 1869 Union Pacific building as a common depot. 

However, in 1923 the building caught fire and a new foundation was completed in 1924 said Intermountain Stories. 

A father and son duo, John and Donald Parkinson, designed the new station in a Spanish Colonial Revival style. The murals in the Grand Lobby were painted by artist Edward Laning.

The station was named a National Register of Historic Places in 1971. 

This is the President’s locomotive at Union Station in 1936, awaiting the signal for departure to California after the funeral of former Utah Governor George H. Dern. (Photo Credit: Utah State Historical Society)

More on Union Station: New development could be coming to Union Station in Ogden

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Ogden’s Union Station has friendly ghosts from it’s rich history