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Some folks in Reidsville hope to bring new life to the old local train station _ and to the city's downtown.

The train doesn't stop at the old Reidsville station anymore.

It thunders past with its horn blowing, and the weeds that have grown up around the station toss in its wake.The little brick building, opened in 1914 as a Southern Railways passenger depot and closed in 1988, is crumbling from neglect. It saw its last passenger train in the 1970s.

But there's talk these days of putting the old station back in service.

Some folks in Reidsville say the building is a historic treasure worth dusting off and using again - perhaps as a museum or maybe a meeting place.

What's more, they think renovating the station may help reawaken Reidsville's downtown.

This month, Reidsville native Judy Miller proposed the renovation to the city's Historic Properties Commission.

Miller hopes the proposal, if approved, also could be the beginning of a grander plan to renovate the historic but now decaying neighborhood on Market Street, once the busiest part of town.

She talks of the area becoming a shopping district for weekend sightseers and antique hunters.

Members of the Historic Properties Commission, charged with protecting local landmarks, said they hope the city can save the depot, and they plan to discuss the renovation at their meeting next month.

The station, they said, holds important memories for many in town.

Commission member Mildred Reid remembers waving goodbye to her father on the platform when she left for college in 1944.

Others have their own stories.

``This whole community's past, all their memories, whether they're black or white, are tied to that depot,' Miller said.

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