Monday, October 5, 2009

New Kate Shelley Bridge

Here they are, side-by-side, the new and old Kate Shelley High Bridges.  In honor of the new bridge, here once again is the story of Kate Shelley. It was 1861 and a terrible storm raged. Fifteen-year-old Kate Shelley lived close enough to Honey Creek that she could hear a train crash into the water. She ran to the bridge, saw two men trapped. Not only did she need to get help for them, but she knew a passenger train was scheduled to come over that broken bridge in a matter of minutes. In the filthy weather, her lamp long blown out, Kate Shelley crawled across the broken bridge, over slippery railroad ties - the kind with the gap between them and a looong fall down - full knowing she could be hit by the ongoing train. Where is this girl's action movie! Kate made it to the station on time, the passenger train was saved and two of the men who went into Honey Creek survived. She died in 1912 and the Kate Shelley High Bridge near Boone is named in her honor. I don't even want to run the 5 yards from the house to the car in a nasty storm. Kate Shelley was one amazing Iowan.


Additional Information: Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania
Photo Courtesty Gerry Rowland

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