Town Sign Project: Lucas County

A few Saturdays back, before I took my entries for this year’s huge embarrassing failure at the Iowa State Fair Photography Salon to the Cultural Center and well before I went to Saydie’s wedding, I tooled around Lucas County and harvested their town signs. It was a pretty busy day.

Here are some facts about Lucas County:

+ Population is 8,853 (2019 estimate), the 85th most populous county in Iowa. Behind Monona and ahead of Decatur.
+ The county seat and largest city is Chariton.
+ Was formed in 1846.
+ Named for Robert Lucas, the 12th Governor of Ohio and first Governor of the Iowa territory. He also started the Honey War with Missouri.
+ Major highways are US-34, US-65, and IA-14.
+ Adjacent counties are Warren, Marion, Monroe, Wayne, and Clarke.
+ Population peaked in 1900 at 16,126.

Lucas County has a beautiful courthouse:


Lucas County Courthouse
Lucas County Courthouse in Chariton, Iowa

The Lucas County Freedom Rock is located in Chariton, Iowa.


Lucas County Freedom Rock

Lucas County Freedom Rock

Lucas County Freedom Rock

Lucas County Freedom Rock

Chariton has a really neat Veterans Memorial Park where their Freedom Rock resides. It is pretty rare when I go to a Freedom Rock (on a weekend) and there isn’t somebody there checking it out. It seems that there are many people out there that are traveling around and looking at them.

On this day, I didn’t meet a fellow traveler, but a retired Marine that lives in Lucas County. He isn’t the official caretaker of the park, but I think he is involved with it pretty heavily. We talked for awhile and he gave me the handout below about their park:



If you have any interest in history or military in general, it is definitely worth going to this park. He also told me about the Flag Day and Independence Day events they have at the park. I’m glad I met him.

With Lucas County conquered, this is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 26 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

26 counties completed. 26.3% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Lucas County:


Chariton, Iowa
Chariton, Iowa
Chariton – Since 1849
Population: 4,321

Russell, Iowa
Russell, Iowa
Russell – Since 1867
Population: 554

Lucas, Iowa
Lucas, Iowa
Lucas – Since 1868
Population: 216

Williamson, Iowa
Williamson, Iowa
Welcome to Williamson Community Center – Williamson Fire Dept & Ems
Population: 152

Derby, Iowa
Derby, Iowa
Derby Fire Station – City Hall
Population: 115

There are only 5 towns in Lucas County and it looks like some slick town sign salesman went down Highway 34 and sold identical signs to 3 of them and the other 2 don’t even have real town signs. So, to figure out the Best in Show for Lucas County, we are going to have to go to the rarely used Alternate Sign Tie-Breaker.

Here are the alternate signs of Lucas County:


Chariton, Iowa
Chariton – Alternate

Russell, Iowa
Russell – Alternate

Lucas, Iowa
Lucas – Alternate

Lucas, Iowa
Lucas – Alternate

Derby, Iowa
Derby – Alternate

The tie-breaker is no contest. Clearly Best in Show for Lucas County is:


Lucas, Iowa
Lucas – Best in Show – Lucas County

Here is the current list of Best in Shows:


Fontanelle, Iowa
Best in Show – Adair County

Audubon, Iowa
Best in Show – Audubon County

Norway, Iowa
Best in Show – Benton County

Moingona, Iowa
Best in Show – Boone County

Coon Rapids, Iowa
Best in Show – Carroll County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Popejoy, Iowa
Best in Show – Franklin County

Scranton, Iowa
Best in Show – Greene County

Beaman, Iowa
Best in Show – Grundy County

Menlo, Iowa
Best in Show – Guthrie County

Stanhope, Iowa
Best in Show – Hamilton County

Ackley, Iowa
Best in Show – Hardin County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

Next time we check in on THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT, we will visit Humboldt County.

2 thoughts on “Town Sign Project: Lucas County”

  1. One sort of hopes that the county bought those identical signs for the three most populous towns, but that means that they were playing favorites and left out the two youngest brothers.

    How “huge embarrassing failure”?

  2. All of those towns are on Highway 34. The other 2 towns are not. Osceola, on Highway 34 has an identical sign, as does Murray, also on Highway 34. It is almost like there is a Highway 34 Association.

    I wrote that before failure thing, before I got my card. I always expect to do poorly at the Iowa State Fair Photography Salon.

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