Platte Bridge Railroad Tragedy

Modern view of Platte River. Photograph courtesy of Tim Kiser.

Notable Events:

  • Platte Bridge Railroad Tragedy (September 3, 1861)

Just to the east of St. Joseph, Missouri, the Hannibal and St. Joseph Railroad crossed over the Platte River - at least until September 3, 1861 when pro-Southern bushwhackers undermined the structure and sent a train plunging into the water below, killing up to 20 passengers. The effects on the railroad, which was still controlled by the Union, were temporary, but the disaster sparked further violence that culminated in the near-destruction of Platte City.