suddenly another thought went through kate’s mind like an electric shock. an express train was due to go past about thirty minutes later. if it were not stopped, that long train, full of passengers, would fall into the stream. “someone must go to the station and warn the station-master，” kate thought. but who was to go? she would have to go herself. there was no one else.
in wind and rain she started on her difficult way. soon she was at the bridge that crossed the des moines river, a bridge also built of wood, just like the bridge across honey creek. the storm had not washed this away, but there was no footpath across it. she would have to cross it by stepping from sleeper (枕木) to sleeper. with great care she began the dangerous crossing, sometimes on her hands and knees, hardly daring to look down between the sleepers into the wild flood waters below. if she should slip, she would fall between the sleepers, into the rapidly flowing stream.
at last — she never knew how long it had taken her — she felt solid ground under her feet. but there was no time to rest. she still had to run more than half a mile and had only a few minutes left. unless she reached the station before the express did, many, many lives would be lost.
she did reach the station just as the train came into sight. fortunately the station-master was standing outside. “the bridge is down! stop the train! oh, please stop it!” kate shouted breathlessly.
the station-master went pale. he rushed into the station building and came back with a signal light. he waved the red light as the train came into the station. it was not a second too early.
21. what did kate decide to do?
a. stop the express train. b. check the signal light.
c. meet the passengers. d. visit the station-master.
22. which of the following words best describes kate’s journey?
a. fruitless. b. boring. c. well-planned. d. risky.
23. why did the station-master turn pale?
a. he suddenly fell ill. b. he realized the danger.
c. he discovered his mistake. d. he became over-excited.
on july 6, 1881, a storm struck the des moines river valley. the small river near the shelley home, where a railroad widow was raising 18-year-old kate shelley and four other children, began to flood. in the dark of the night, kate shelley heard a strange and frightening crash when a steam train fell 184 feet as the honey creek bridge collapsed (倒塌). realizing that a midnight express passenger train was due through that area shortly, shelley recognized the danger posed to the crew and passengers of the next train.
without concern for her personal safety, the teenager hurried to the nearest railroad station by crawling (匍匐行进) on her hands and knees across the 671-foot-long railroad bridge that crossed the des moines river. the crossing was slippery and dangerous because of the storm. when shelley reached the moingona station, she was able to warn officials in time. she also insisted upon joining a rescue party sent to recover survivors of the earlier train crash.
a grateful community rewarded shelley with medals and gifts from the railroad company, including a bag of flour, a half load of coal, and a lifetime train pass.
after concluding her education, shelley worked first as a teacher, and later as a depot (仓库) agent at the station where she once issued her famous warning. when shelley passed away, a special train bore her remains from her home to boone, iowa, her burial location. after her death on january 21, 1912, the chicago and northwestern railway replaced the des moines river bridge. they renamed the bridge after the young heroine who made the first bridge so memorable.
shelley’s railroad adventure is remembered with stories and poems. in moingona, iowa, the kate shelley railroad museum now stands at the previous site of the moingona station.
60.on the night of july 6, 1881, _____.
a. two trains hit each other
b. a railroad widow lost her home
c. four children lost their way home
d. a railroad bridge fell down in a storm
61.shelley came to the moingona station in order to _____.
a. go to work
b. board a train
c. prevent a train accident
d. get help for her family
62.the last three paragraphs are mainly about _____.
a. the first bridge in theu.s.
b. how shelley was rewarded
c. why shelley was a heroine
d. the history of the moingona station
63.which of the following words can best describe shelley?
a. smart. b. skilled. c. selfless. d. modest.