DescriptionAn important road ranch on the Oregon Trail and later a stage station for the Pony Express, Rock Creek Station, 57426 710 Rd., accommodated all sorts of individuals on their ways west. The one who assured his place in history, however, was James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok, who made his debut as a gunfighter by inexplicably killing station owner Dave McCanles and two hired men on July 12, 1861.
Dime novelists and Harper's Magazine latched onto the tale spread by Hickok and his gang, who claimed that Hickok had single-handedly fought and killed 10 men with a gun and Bowie knife. Hickok's reputation as a fighting frontier hero spread like wildfire. The many popular, romanticized accounts of the killings tenaciously outweighed the facts for nearly 7 decades after the infamous incident. Even now the true story remains unclear, and Rock Creek Station continues to be a focal point of one of the West's most controversial legends.
Fairbury's railroad heritage is remembered at The Rock Island Depot Railroad Museum , in the former Western Division Headquarters of the Rock Island Railroad at 910 Bacon Road. The 1914 depot is now a museum with railroad artifacts, a 7 1/4”-gauge miniature railroad, a model railroad, a telegraph, photographs and a motor car that is in the process of being restored; phone (402) 729-5131 or (402) 729-9907.
Visitor InfoFairbury Chamber of Commerce 518 E St. FAIRBURY, NE 68352. Phone:(402)729-3000
Things to SeeRock Creek Station State Historical Park