A few weeks back I hit the open road with Teresa and harvested the town signs of Monroe County.
Here are some facts about Monroe County:
+ Population is 7,577 making it the 87th most populous county in Iowa. Putting it behind Decatur County and above Adair County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Albia.
+ Originally named Kishkekosh County after the Meskwaki Chief. Renamed for James Monroe, 5th President of the United States.
+ Site of Buxton, the largest town with a majority black population in the early 20th century.
+ Major highways are US-34, IA-5, and IA-137.
+ Adjacent counties are Marion, Mahaska, Wapello, Appanoose, and Lucas.
+ Population peaked in 1910 at 25,429.
The Monroe County Courthouse is gorgeous:
The Monroe County Courthouse in Albia, Iowa.
The Monroe County Freedom Rock is located in Albia, Iowa.
With Monroe County completed, this is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:
55 counties completed. 55.6% of the Cyclone State conquered!
There are 5 incorporated towns in Monroe County. However, Eddyville is barely in Monroe County and is mostly in Mahaska County and Wapello County, so we will cover it at a later date. Moravia is also ever so slightly in Monroe County, but 99.9% of it is in Appanoose County. So we will also cover it at a later date. That leaves Monroe County with only 3 towns.
Here are the town signs of Monroe County:
Population: 3,721 (-45)
I don’t even think this one is open to discussion. The monorail sales man of US-34 got Albia. Lovilia is also snoozer. Meanwhile, Melrose brings the heat! I loved the town of Melrose. Not only does it have a great sign, they have a monument in their town park for their 1937 high school basketball team that won the state championship that they claim was the best high school team in Iowa history. Although I think the Ames High team with Harrison Barnes and Doug McDermott might have something to say about that. They also have their own blarney stone. That makes two Iowa towns that I know of that have their own blarney stone.
Melrose – Best in Show – Monroe County
Melrose also had a few alternate signs:
Melrose – Alternate
Here is the current list of Best in Shows:
Best in Show – Adair County
The next time we hit the open road for THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT, we will end up in Mahaska County.