I recently took a Friday off from the Computer Mine and Jesse and I spent the day tooling around Benton County and another county harvesting their town signs. It was a very enjoyable road trip.
Here are some facts about Benton County:
+ Population is 26,076.
+ The county seat and largest city is Vinton.
+ Named for Thomas Hart Benton, a Senator from Missouri.
+ Was formed on December 21, 1837 from sections of Dubuque County.
+ Major highways are I-380, US-30, US-151, US-218, IA-8, IA-21, IA-27, and IA-150.
+ Adjacent counties are Black Hawk, Buchanan, Linn, Iowa, and Tama.
+ Currently at peak population.
Benton County has a beautiful courthouse:
Benton County Courthouse in Vinton, Iowa
The Benton County Freedom Rock is located in Shellsburg:
With Benton County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:
23 counties completed. 23.2% of the Cyclone State conquered.
Welcome to… Vinton – the City of Lights
Benton County has a very solid collection of town signs. I don’t know that there is a showstopper in the bunch, but at least every single town has a sign. Even the unincorporated town, sorta. It is really just a sign for their baseball team, but it is so great that I’m calling it a town sign. I guess if I have to pick which one is the worst, it is Blairstown. Their town sign got blown over and Jesse had to hold it up just I could get a picture of it. Now, while that might actually be my favorite picture in the set, it doesn’t say much for the town sign.
I think Best in Show for Benton County is pretty obvious too. It has a snazzy design and has a pithy motto. Plus, it calls back to high school sports glory that no longer call this town home.
Norway – Best in Show – Benton County
Norway baseball used to be something of a dynasty in Iowa High School sports. They won something like 20 State Championships but eventually their school district was consolidated into the Benton Community School District with the towns of Van Horne, Atkins, Blairstown, Keystone, and Newhall. It is headquartered in Van Horne. The last year of Norway High’s existence they won a final State Championship. The story was turned into one of the poorest made movies ever called THE FINAL SEASON. It stars the guy who played Rudy in the Notre Dame propaganda film RUDY and the nerdy girl that got hot when she took off her glasses and let her hair down in SHE’S ALL THAT. The movie takes many unnecessary licenses with the actual events, but more than anything it is just horribly written. It is currently on Amazon Prime if you want to make your own estimations though.
A few towns in Benton County also had alternate signs:
Van Horne Alternate
Here is the current list of Best in Shows:
Best in Show – Adair County
Next time we check in with THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT it will involve Poweshiek County.