imageThe natural beauty and fascinating history of Shelby County has made it a well-known getaway destination, and the Shelby County Chamber works diligently to promote tourism through its channels of communication. The Chamber promotes many festivals that encourage culture, music and local craftsmanship. The Chamber also assists area tourism groups, committees and related businesses with relevant resources and marketing support.

Shelby County has a strong Danish heritage, and celebrates this through an authentic windmill imported from Denmark and the Danish Immigrant Museum. The windmill was built in 1848 and was transported to Elk Horn in 1975. Also in Elk Horn, the museum is dedicated to preserve the culture and history of the Danish people. The magnificent half-timbered museum building is located on a 20-acre site.

Another favorite stop is the 76-foot tall steel sculpture along Shelby’s Interstate 80 exit. The sculpture symbolizes the importance of agriculture and the men and women who work the land. The corn stalk sculpture highlights the major commodities produced by area farmers, and is surrounded by a beautiful garden and a gazebo.


The Rock Island Old Stone Arch Bridge is a beautiful piece of Shelby County and rail history. A report written in 1883 by the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad listed only four 30-foot arch culvert bridges. Shelby’s bridge was one of them, and is the first railroad structure built in Shelby County. The materials used in construction also add to the bridge’s historic significance. Most railroad bridges in Iowa were constructed with wood pile or timber due to the scarcity of building materials, but limestone (believed to have come from a quarry in Earlham, Iowa) was used for the Rock Island Old Stone Arch Bridge’s trestle.

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