Des Moines
Phone: (515) 277-4354

Denny Rehder is a local historian. His avocation for nearly fifty years has been music. Now that musical ability is combined with another avocation, Iowa railroad history, to offer a program on this overlooked part of Iowa’s past. Rehder has been involved as author, editor, publisher, photographer or researcher in the publication of seven books on subjects from Iowa history. He is a native of Gladbrook who grew up watching the trains of the Chicago Great Western mainline.

Grass Between the Rails
The program celebrates Iowa’s railroad heritage with a unique blend of stories and original folk songs about the development of railroads in Iowa. The subjects cover events of national importance such as the race across Iowa to connect with the transcontinental railroad to the West and local history, including the poor service offered by the “Slow Norwegian.” Other topics include the somber “Worst Wreck Ever,” a farm boy’s remembrance of “The One Elephant Circus” and the rollicking “Doodlebug.”

Additional Resources: Tales of the Rails (Video)