This was the railroad line that gave name to the famous song, "The Rock Island Line"
It ran through here from 1895 when the nearby bridge and trestle were constructed, through sometime before 1980, when the Rock Island Line went bankrupt. We aren't certain of the final year that it rolled across these rails, but when you see the size of some of the trees that have grown between the rails, you'll probably agree with us that it was probably several years earlier than that.
The bridge, and the rails that you are about to walk, were at least 65 years old when the engine in the photograph above (named "The Rocket") was built! For many years, the only engines that pulled the trains down the rails that you are about to walk were powered by coal powered steam engines.
This may be your last chance to see this area before its turned into a cultivated park. The work has begun already... some minor brush cutting, a few surveyor stakes, and most of all, major pieced of the famous J.A.R. bridge is being demolished. See the Inver Grove Heights website for more information on the plans for the future park.