Gladstone station opened in 1876 when a line opened from Port Pirie in the west, it was later extended east to Peterborough and ultimately Broken Hill. In 1888, a line was built north to Laura and ultimately Wilmington. When the Hamley Bridge line from Balaklava in the south reached Gladstone in 1894, it became a four-way junction station. All were built as narrow gauge lines.
In 1927, the line from the south was converted to broad gauge, making Gladstone a break of gauge station. As part of the standardisation project, the line between Port Augusta and Broken Hill was converted to standard gauge in 1969, thus Gladstone became a junction for three gauges.