The Nevada California Oregon Railway (NCO) was first organized in 1880 as a narrow gauge railroad with dreams of laying rails north from Reno Nevada, through the northeast corner of California, and on to The Dalles on the Columbia River in Oregon. The roads progress was slowed as there were no large cities or industries along nearly the entire route. It took 28 years to reach Alturas, California. This was the first town reached which had businesses, maintained roads, and brick buildings. In 1908 Alturas became the northern terminus.


In 1917, the Western Pacific purchased the southern end of the line, and the NCOs main shops and offices were moved to Alturas, and the mission style depot pictured in this postcard was constructed. In the early 1920s, the Southern Pacific had been looking for a shorter connection to its Ogden Route for its Oregon lines and the NCO became an advantageous takeover target. In 1925, the NCO and the SP formalized a sale, and the owners were paid in stock of the Pacific Electric Railway. The SP assumed operations in 1926 and proceeded to standard gauge the line the following year.


The depot is still standing and is being used as an Elks lodge.



Alturas Depot - The Nevada California Oregon Railroad