It all started with a fundraiser for a new train station in Fulton, Kentucky. The community is shaping up after the town met its goal to build a much nicer stop for travelers.
There are only two stations in Kentucky, and many saw this particular depot as run down. Donations and money from the city and county came together to make it happen. Their goal was $60,000, but they raised $84,833.
Jeff Campbell sees the train as an opportunity to give back to his hometown that has withstood time and a declining population. “This building is here because of the railroad,” Campbell said. He’s talking about the Meadows Hotel. He plans to turn the 115-year-old building to its original state, a hotel, for those coming through the railroad town. “It was either me or the wrecking ball,” Campbell said.
He says he’s lived a blessed life, and now it’s time for him to give back. He’s giving back $1.5 million to be exact, to restore the hotel. He and Cubb Stokes, Fulton City Manager, both agree “build it and they will come.”
Stokes is thankful for Campbell’s work and thinks it will have a lasting impression. “Jeff has definitely made an impact on the twin cities since his return to Fulton,” he said.
Campbell’s drive is to save the town’s heritage and grow the economy and the traffic. His hotel won’t have 100 rooms like the original Meadows Hotel in 1901. It will have 14. The boutique hotel will take about two years to complete.