The Rich History of Boone County

Featured Boone Historical Person

Kate Shelley

July 6, 1881, is a date forever embedded in Boone County’s history.  As midnight drew near and a wild storm raged, a girl of 18 crawled across the ties of the railroad bridge that spanned the Des Moines River. She needed to bring word to officials that an engine had crashed into Honey Creek when the trestle gave way in flood waters. The lives of four men hung in the balance.

After inching her way across the wind and rain swept bridge while thunder, lightning, and trees crashed around her, Kate Shelley arrived at Mongoina’s Chicago and Northwestern Depot and warned of the peril faced by the passenger train due later that night.

Kate Shelley

Featured Historical Photos