Category Archives: History

Town Sign Project: Page County

A few weeks back I cruised around Page County on a solo town sign harvesting trip. I actually harvested the town signs of 3 different counties on this trip. Reaping the fruits of a slightly new harvesting plan. And you definitely reap what you sow.

Here are some facts about Page County:

+ The population is 15,211. The 50th most populous county in Iowa. Below Floyd County and above Hamilton County.
+ Clarinda is the largest town and county seat.
+ Named after Captain John Page who was killed in the Battle of Palo Alto in the Mexican-American War.
+ Birthplace of Glenn Miller.
+ Major highways are US-71, IA-2, US-59, and IA-48.
+ Adjacent counties are Montgomery, Taylor, and Fremont.
+ Population peaked in 25,904.

Page County has a beautiful courthouse:


Page County Courthouse
The Page County Courthouse located in Clarinda, Iowa.

The Page County Freedom Rock is located in Clarinda, Iowa:


Page County Freedom Rock

Page County Freedom Rock

Page County Freedom Rock

Page County Freedom Rock

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


Town Sign Project - 41 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

41 counties completed. 41.4% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Page County:


Clarinda, Iowa
Clarinda, Iowa
CLARINDA
Population: 5,369 (-203)

Shenandoah, Iowa
Shenandoah, Iowa
Shenandoah
Our Pride is Growing…
Population: 4,925 (-225)

Essex, Iowa
Essex, Iowa
ESSEX
EST 1870
Population: 722 (-76)

Coin, Iowa
Coin, Iowa
Welcome To COIN
Est. 1879
Population: 176 (-17)

College Springs, Iowa
College Springs, Iowa
COLLEGE SPRINGS, IOWA
ESTABLISHED 1855
Population: 172 (-42)

Shambaugh, Iowa
Shambaugh, Iowa
Shambaugh
Small town, big heart
Est. 1881
Population: 159 (-32)

Braddyville, Iowa
Braddyville, Iowa
BRADDYVILLE CITY HALL
Population: 147 (-12)

Yorktown, Iowa
Yorktown, Iowa
WELCOME TO YORKTOWN
PAGE COUNTY
Population: 60 (-25)

Northboro, Iowa
Northboro, Iowa
WELCOME TO NORTHBORO
EST 1881
Population: 52 (-6)

Blanchard, Iowa
Blanchard, Iowa
Welcome To BLANCHARD IA, 51630
Population: 38 (-9)

Hepburn, Iowa
Hepburn, Iowa
Hepburn 2 ->
Population: 26 (+3)

The worst town sign of Page County is pretty obvious. Hepburn. They only have a DOT sign. Although Braddyville isn’t much better when the best I can come up for them is a City Hall sign.

I think the Best in Show sign is actually pretty obvious as well. It is the College Springs sign:


College Springs, Iowa
College Springs – Best in Show – Page County

College Springs has a really interesting history. It was once the home to Amity College. Amity College had a football team among other sports. According to the website lostcolleges.com, common opponents for their sports teams were Tabor College (remember them from last week) Corning Academy of Iowa, Creighton, Bellevue, Kirksville Osteopathic, Northwest Teachers, and Chillicothe Business College of Missouri. However, the also played The University of Missouri. In 1897, Amity College hosted Missouri. According to the same website that makes College Springs the smallest town to ever host a game involving a major college. However, the University of Missouri doesn’t seem to have a great online source for information on the early years of their football program. According to the Wikipedia “article” on the 1897 Missouri football season, that game was actually played in nearby Coin. I’m not sure which website I trust on that. The two websites also disagree on when the second matchup between the two teams happened. One list 1897. The other in 1898.

Also, if you look on the College Springs sign you will see what looks like an interesting slide. You will also see a sign that says Crystal Lake, 1918-1943. Those two things are connected. I can find hardly anything about that slide. However, I did find a few pictures of the slide on Flickr from 2009. If you Google College Spring, Iowa flickr you will find those pictures. Since those pictures are over 12 years old, I have no clue if the ruins of that old water park are still around. I have my doubts, but I might keep researching.

Only one town has an alternate sign:


Shenandoah, Iowa
Shenandoah – Alternate

Here is the current list of Best in Shows:


Fontanelle, Iowa
Best in Show – Adair County

Nodaway, Iowa
Best in Show – Adams County

Audubon, Iowa
Best in Show – Audubon County

Norway, Iowa
Best in Show – Benton County

Moingona, Iowa
Best in Show – Boone County

New Hartford, Iowa
Best in Show – Butler County

Manson, Iowa
Best in Show – Calhoun County

Coon Rapids, Iowa
Best in Show – Carroll County

Anita, Iowa
Best in Show – Cass County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo 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

Tabor, Iowa
Best in Show – Fremont 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

Britt, Iowa
Best in Show – Hancock County

Ackley, Iowa
Best in Show – Hardin County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida 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

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Joice, Iowa
Best in Show – Worth County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

The next time we hit the open road for THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT we will end up in Taylor County.

Warren County Auxiliary Images Vol. 2

Here is a second collection of auxiliary images I took while harvesting the town signs of Warren County with Shannon.


Warren County - Medora
Medora

Warren County - New Virginia
New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia
Couldn’t quite figure out what this was…

Warren County - New Virginia
This is one of the most enigmatic things I’ve come across in my travels. It was just there. No explanation. Nobody monitoring it. Nothing else around it.

Warren County - New Virginia
Shannon really wanted to take this picture.

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia
You didn’t know The 4 Wheel Drive was invented in Iowa, did you?

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County - New Virginia

Warren County

Warren County - St Marys
St Marys

Warren County - St Marys

Warren County - St Marys

Warren County - St Marys

Warren County - St Marys

Warren County - St Marys

Warren County - St Marys
They must’ve heard I was coming to town.

Warren County - St Marys
87 wins in a row! That is impressive!

Warren County - St Marys
88 wins in a row! That is even more impressive!

The streak was 88 wins in a row. It was eventually ended by Des Moines East, which is a school that has more students than St Marys and Martensdale has people combined.

About that 4 Wheel Drive, Here is the story from the Des Moines Concours website:

At the 2020 Des Moines Concours, we’re honoring the Iowa roots of 4-wheel drive. Our 4×4 and 4-Wheel Drive Class pays tribute to the foundational work of Jesse Livingood in creating a 4-wheel drive attachment for a Ford automobile in 1914.

At the time, Iowa’s road system covered a good portion of the state. Roads, particularly in rural Iowa, were little more than graded dirt. Iowa’s “gravel bees” in 1916 and 1917 saw the first concerted efforts by communities to make huge improvements of these roads.

Livingood lived in New Virginia, Iowa and ran his repair shop out of an empty corn crib on the family farm. He tinkered as he sought to improve traction, reduce wear, and lower the running costs of driving on Iowa’s roads and around the farm. This led him to develop a bolt-on 4-wheel drive system that he fitted to a Ford Model T. The system could be mounted to any Ford chassis in three to four hours, and would provide braking on all corners and sure footing in mud, sand, and snow or any other inclement weather Iowa could muster.

Livingood is credited for many more inventions including the “pulley and ball” thrust bearing, the differential transmission, the speed governor, two- and four-cylinder steam engines, and the four-wheel brake system. Sadly, due to errors at the U.S. Patent Office, Livingood did not profit from his inventions and lived a modest life.

There will be one more collection of Warren County pictures.

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This is your reminder that this week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme is PASSION:


WEEK 318 - PASSION
PASSION

PASSION! What a great theme for Year 8 of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE!

But what is a PASSION picture? First we need to establish the difference between love and PASSION. What separates PASSION from love isn’t just a warm feeling about something or somebody. PASSION is what you are willing to suffer for. That is why the movie is called THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST not THE WARM FUZZIES OF THE CHRIST. Because Jesus’ love for us was so intense that he was willing to suffer for us. In the theme reveal picture it shows the result of Jesus’ PASSION for us as he has been lowered from the cross into Mary’s arms after being tortured to death for our sins. I’m sure there are many things in your life that you love. But this challenge asks you to take a picture of something you love so much that you are willing to suffer for it. Remember though the PASSION in your submission doesn’t have to be your own. It can be somebody else’s PASSION as well.

Happy photo harvesting!

Warren County Auxiliary Images Vol. 1

A few weeks back I travelled around Warren County with Shannon harvesting the town signs of Warren County. Here is the first collection of auxiliary images from that trip:


Warren County - Indianola
Indianola

Warren County - Indianola

Warren County - Indianola

Warren County - Indianola

Warren County - Ackworth
Ackworth

Warren County - Ackworth

Warren County - Beech
Beech

Warren County - Milo
Milo

Warren County - Milo

Warren County - Milo

Warren County - Milo
This would be a great idea for people like my neighbor Stan.

Warren County - Milo

Warren County - Milo

Warren County - Milo

Warren County - Milo
I love that Milo took memorial benches up to an 11!

Warren County - Lacona
Lacona – Breakfast purchased the day before at Rinehart’s.

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Lacona

Warren County - Liberty Center
Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

Warren County - Liberty Center

The Town Sign Project Auxiliary Images gallery now houses over 1,000 images! To take a gander, click on the link below:

Town Sign Project Auxiliary Images

There is at least one more collection of images from this trip coming. Probably two.

Town Sign Project: Fremont County

A few weeks back I cruised around Fremont County on a solo town sign harvesting trip. Fremont County was the third county I harvested on that day. I have no connection to any of the towns in Fremont County. I’ve never left I-29 on any of my trips through Fremont County. However, I was strangely looking forward to Fremont County. Not only because Fremont County is in the southwest corner of Iowa, but also because my Paris grandparents lived on Fremont Street. Funny how the mind works and makes strange connections.

Here are some facts about Fremont County:

+ Population is 6,605. That makes it the 93rd most populous county in Iowa. Right below Ida County and right above Wayne County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Sidney.
+ Formed in 1847.
+ Named after John C. Fremont. An explorer, military officer, U.S. Senator from California and the first Republican nominee for President of the United States. Fremont, is one of the most interesting figures in American history that gets forgotten. But that is just my opinion. I’m not saying he was a great person or a bad person. Like most people of his time that didn’t flat out suck (see John C. Calhoun) he was a mixed bag. But he was an interesting mixed bag.
+ Home of the world’s largest continuous outdoor rodeo in Sidney. Started in 1928.
+ Major highways are I-20, US-59, US-275, IA-2, and IA-333.
+ Adjacent Iowa counties are: Mills and Page.
+ Population peaked in 1900 at 18,546.

Fremont County has an average to slightly better than average looking courthouse:


Fremont County Courthouse
The Fremont County Courthouse located in Sidney, Iowa.

The Fremont County Freedom Rock is located in Hamburg, Iowa:


Fremont County Freedom Rock

Fremont County Freedom Rock

Fremont County Freedom Rock

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


Town Sign Project - 40 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLTETED

40 counties completed. 40.4% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Fremont County:


Sidney, Iowa
Sidney, Iowa
SIDNEY
IOWA
Population: 1,070 (-68)

Hamburg, Iowa
Hamburg, Iowa
You’re Always Welcome In HAMBURG
ESTABLISHED 1858
Population: 890 (-297)

Tabor, Iowa
Tabor, Iowa – Also in Mills County
WELCOME TO TABOR
Lighting the Way Since 1852
Population: 1,014 (+58)

Farragut, Iowa
Farragut, Iowa
Welcome to FARRAGUT
EST. 1870
“DAMN THE TORPEDOES! FULL STEAM AHEAD!
-ADMIRAL D. G. FARRAGUT
Population: 490 (+5)

Riverton, Iowa
Riverton, Iowa
Welcome to RIVERTON
EST. 1870
Population: 245 (-59)

Thurman, Iowa
Thurman, Iowa
WELCOME TO THURMAN
Population: 167 (-67)

Randolph, Iowa
Randolph, Iowa
WELCOME TO RANDOLPH
Population: 189 (+21)

Imogene, Iowa
Imogene, Iowa
IMOGENE
Population: 39 (-33)

Technically a small sliver of Shenandoah is in Fremont County, but not enough to share it yet. That will wait until I reveal the town signs of Page County.

Who has the worst town sign in Fremont County? I don’t know that I think there is a bad town sign in the county, so I’m going to give the distinction to Thurman, even though I actually love its rustic charm.

Then who gets Best in Show for Fremont County? I’m fascinated by how Imogene, a town of 39 people, has such an expensive looking sign. However, they do have a restaurant that is on The Tenderloin Trail 2.0, so it isn’t a town without means. At least the have the means of making a pretty good tenderloin. I haven’t tried it yet, so I will hold back my praises for the time being. I also like the Sidney sign and how it fits in with the rodeo “theme” of their town. Then there is Farragut’s sign. It isn’t the most impressive design, but I stay awake nights wondering why they put quotation marks at the beginning of the quote from Admiral Farragut, but not at the end of the quote. However, my favorite town sign belongs to Tabor. You might be wondering why there is an old-timey lantern on it. Was Tabor once the home of a burgeoning lantern industry. You may be disappointed to find out the answer is “no”. It actually represents Tabor’s place on the Underground Railroad. Here is a snippet on the history of the town of Tabor:

In 1852 the city of Tabor was founded by several Christian clergymen, who were also active abolitionists (George Gaston, Samuel A. Adams, and Rev. John Todd), and their families. They chose to settle in what is now Tabor in order to found a Christian college, which eventually became Tabor College. The founders “were impressed with this high location and mutually selected the name ‘Tabor’ after the Biblical name of Mount Tabor, a mountain near Nazareth, the town of Jesus’ childhood”.

The residents of Tabor held monthly abolitionist prayer meetings,  and helped runaway slaves whenever they could.

In the 1850s the abolitionist John Brown kept a store of weapons in Tabor, and met here with other supporters to plan his raids in Kansas and Virginia, including the raid on Harpers Ferry. The town was the home of many abolitionists, including John Tod, a “conductor” on the Underground Railroad and co-founder of Tabor College. Tabor College was located in the city from 1853 until 1927, when it closed for financial reasons. The college’s buildings housed German Prisoners of War during World War II.

Unfortunately, to my knowledge, those German prisoners of war didn’t carve a nativity set that can only be described as exactly what a nativity set carved by Germans would look like.

One last tidbit about Tabor. The novel “Gilead” which won the Pulitzer Prize in 2005 was based on Tabor, Iowa.

Anyways, they have a cool sign:


Tabor, Iowa
Tabor – Best in Show – Fremont County

A few town have alternate town signs:


Sidney, Iowa
Sidney Alternate

Sidney, Iowa
Sidney Alternate

Sidney, Iowa
Sidney Alternate

Imogene, Iowa
Imogene Alternate

Hamburg, Iowa
Hamburg Alternate

Hamburg, Iowa
Hamburg

Here is the current list of Best in Shows:


Fontanelle, Iowa
Best in Show – Adair County

Nodaway, Iowa
Best in Show – Adams County

Audubon, Iowa
Best in Show – Audubon County

Norway, Iowa
Best in Show – Benton County

Moingona, Iowa
Best in Show – Boone County

New Hartford, Iowa
Best in Show – Butler County

Manson, Iowa
Best in Show – Calhoun County

Coon Rapids, Iowa
Best in Show – Carroll County

Anita, Iowa
Best in Show – Cass County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo 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

Tabor, Iowa
Best in Show – Fremont 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

Britt, Iowa
Best in Show – Hancock County

Ackley, Iowa
Best in Show – Hardin County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida 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

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Joice, Iowa
Best in Show – Worth County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

The next time we hit the open road for THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT, we will visit Page County.

BUTLER COUNTY AUXILIARY IMAGES VOL. 2

This is the final collection of auxiliary images I took while on a road trip with Carla to Butler County to harvest their town signs.


Butler County

Butler County - Clarksville
Clarksville

Butler County - Clarksville

Butler County - Clarksville

Butler County - Clarksville
If you aren’t down with Mollie B, you aren’t down with me.

Butler County - Clarksville

Butler County - Clarksville

Butler County - Clarksville

Butler County - Allison
Allison

Butler County - Allison

Butler County - Greene
Greene

Butler County - Greene

Butler County - Greene

Butler County - Greene

Butler County - Greene

Butler County - Aredale
Aredale

Butler County - Bristow
Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Bristow

Butler County - Butler Center
Butler Center

Butler County - Butler Center

Franklin-Hardin County- Ackley
Ackley

Franklin-Hardin County- Ackley

I plan in great detail the order in which I will harvest the town signs on these trips, but I don’t really plan for other stops. I like these trips to be as organic as possible and to be surprised at the things I find. One of the most amazing discoveries on this trip was that memorial garden/park we found in Bristow with the little chapel. I had no clue it existed and I was so glad we found it.

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This is your reminder that this week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme is TIME:


WEEK 317 - TIME
TIME

What exactly is a TIME photo? In a way, all images are a TIME photo because all pictures record a little slice of TIME that will never ever happen again. Your challenge is to figure out how to capture that slice of TIME. Will you use a quick shutter speed to freeze TIME? Will you use a slow shutter speed to make TIME seem more fluid? Will you be more literal and like the theme reveal image take a picture of a TIME recording device?

Happy photo harvesting!

Sac County and Ida County Auxiliary Images Vol. 1

I found a few cool things while I was tooling around Sac County and Ida County. Including the birthplace of the great Andy Williams. A singer that everybody loves unequivocally. Here is the first collection of those images.


Sac County - Wall Lake
Wall Lake

Sac County - Wall Lake

Sac County - Wall Lake

Sac County - Wall Lake

Sac County - Wall Lake

Sac County - Wall Lake

Sac County - Carnarvon
Carnarvon

Sac County - Carnarvon

Sac County - Carnarvon

Sac County - Carnarvon

Sac County - Carnarvon

Sac County - Carnarvon

Sac County - Carnarvon

Sac County - Odebolt
Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Sac County - Odebolt

Ida County - Ida Grove
Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

Ida County - Ida Grove

I have at least one more collection of images from this road trip still to share.

Town Sign Project: Pocahontas County

A few weeks back I cruised around Pocahontas County harvesting their town signs. Some of these I harvested on a trip to northwest Iowa with Teresa. The rest I harvested on a solo trip.

Here are some facts about Pocahontas County:

+ Population is 7,078. It is the 93rd most populous county. Behind Ida County and ahead of Wayne County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Pocahontas.
+ Formed in 1851.
+ Named for the Powhatan “Princess” Matoax. Pocahontas was a childhood nickname and she kept her real name hidden from the colonists that held her hostage. The truth of her story is pretty widely misrepresented by Disney… to say the least.
+ Home of a giant (and terrible) statue of Matoax (Pocahontas).
+ Home to a sweet sculpture of the greatest mascot in all the lands, Cy.
+ Home of Palmer’s boys basketball team (now consolidated) that won 103 straight games in the 1980s.
+ Major highways are: IA-3, IA-4, IA-7, IA-10, and IA-15.
+ Adjacent counties are: Palo Alto, Humboldt, Webster, Calhoun, and Buena Vista.
+ Population peaked in 1940 at 16,266.

The Pocahontas County courthouse is similar to the one in Boone.


Pocahontas County Courthouse
The Pocahontas County Courthouse located in Pocahontas, Iowa.

The Pocahontas County Freedom Rock is located in Rolfe, Iowa:


Pocahontas County Freedom Rock

Pocahontas County Freedom Rock

Pocahontas County Freedom Rock

Pocahontas County Freedom Rock

The Pocahontas County Freedom Rock is right across the street from a sweet sculpture of Cy, so it probably doesn’t get as much attention as the rest of the Freedom Rocks in Iowa.

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


Town Sign Project - 34 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

34 counties completed. 34.3% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Pocahontas County (population from 2020 Census):


Pocahontas, Iowa
Pocahontas
WELCOME TO POCAHONTAS
“THE PRINCESS CITY”
Population: 1,867 (+78)

Laurens, Iowa
Laurens, Iowa
LAURENS
Population: 1,264 (+6)

Fonda, Iowa
Fonda, Iowa
FONDA
HOME TOWN WITH A HEART
Population: 636 (+5)

Rolfe, Iowa
Rolfe, Iowa
ESTABLISHED 1863
WELCOME TO Rolfe
Population: 509 (-75)

Gilmore City, Iowa
Gilmore City, Iowa (Humboldt County)
IOWA’S LIMESTONE CAPITAL
GILMORE CITY WELCOMES YOU
Population: 487 (-17)

Palmer, Iowa
Palmer, Iowa
PALMER
Population: 138 (-27)

Havelock, Iowa
Havelock, Iowa
HAVELOCK
EST. 1881
Population: 130 (-8)

Varina, Iowa
Varina, Iowa
A LITTLE TOWN WITH A BIG HEART
Population: 68 (-3)

Plover, Iowa
Plover, Iowa
PLOVER
EST. 1882
Population: 50 (-27)

I think the town with the worst town sign in Pocahontas County is pretty obvious. It is Fonda. They allegedly used to have a pretty cool town sign, but it is either gone now or in the process of being replaced, cause I combed (with Teresa) pretty much every inch of that town and didn’t find it.

I think it is a two horse race for the best town sign in Pocahontas County. Pocahontas and Rolfe have nice signs, but it really comes down to Plover and Havelock. I’m going to give it to Plover because the backwards “1”s in Havelock’s sign makes me think it is a clue to some kind of New World Order/Masonic Temple conspiracy that might be going down in that town. I actually think Plover’s alternate town sign is even better than their main town sign.


Plover, Iowa
Plover – Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Here are the alternate town signs of Pocahontas County:


Pocahontas, Iowa
Pocahontas – Alternate

Plover, Iowa
Plover – Alternate

Laurens, Iowa
Laurens – Alternate

Laurens, Iowa
Laurens – Alternate

Havelock, Iowa
Havelock – Alternate

Varina, Iowa
Varina – Alternate

Varina, Iowa
Varina – Alternate

Something I find interesting about Pocahontas County is that a couple of the towns are references to things in Matoax’s life. Rolfe (assumptions here) is named after John Rolfe the Englishman that Matoax would marry after she was baptized and changed her name to Rebecca. Varina is named after Varina (another assumption) the farm where Matoax and John Rolfe lived. If you are a fan of the musical HAMILTON (and we probably aren’t friends if you aren’t), Laurens is named after Hamilton’s close friend and critic of slavery John Laurens. And Plover is named for a bird. And Fonda is named because the post office in the day was too incompetent to tell the difference between Manson and Marvin.

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

New Hartford, Iowa
Best in Show – Butler County

Manson, Iowa
Best in Show – Calhoun 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

Britt, Iowa
Best in Show – Hancock County

Ackley, Iowa
Best in Show – Hardin County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida 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

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

The next time we hit the dusty trail with THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT, we will visit Cerro Gordo County.

Humboldt County Auxiliary Images

A few weekends back I tooled around Humboldt County and harvested their town sign. Here is a collection of some of the auxiliary images I took on this road trip, including some I took as I went back south threw Calhoun County.


Humboldt County - Humboldt
Humboldt

Humboldt County - Humboldt

Humboldt County - Humboldt

Humboldt County - Humboldt

Humboldt County - Renwick
Renwick

Humboldt County - Renwick

Humboldt County - Renwick

Humboldt County - Renwick

Humboldt County - Renwick

Humboldt County - Renwick

Humboldt County - Renwick

Humboldt County - LuVerne
LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - LuVerne

Humboldt County - Livermore
Livermore

Humboldt County - Livermore

Humboldt County - Livermore

Humboldt County - Livermore

Humboldt County - Livermore

Humboldt County - Livermore

Humboldt County - Ottosen
Ottosen

Humboldt County - Ottosen

Humboldt County - Ottosen

Humboldt County - Ottosen

Humboldt County - Ottosen

Humboldt County - Ottosen

Humboldt County - Rutland
Rutland

Humboldt County - Rutland

Humboldt County - Gilmore City
Gilmore City

Humboldt County - Gilmore City

Humboldt County - Gilmore City

Humboldt County - Pioneer
Pioneer

Humboldt County - Pioneer

Humboldt County - Pioneer

Humboldt County - Pioneer

Humboldt County - Pioneer

Calhoun County- Somers
Somers?

Humboldt County - Rinard
Rinard

Humboldt County

Calhoun County - Rinard

Calhoun County - Rinard

Calhoun County - Lohrville
Lohrville

Calhoun County - Lohrville

Calhoun County - Lohrville

The next set of auxiliary images to share will mostly come from Calhoun County.

Lucas County Auxiliary Images

Shortly after I published the town signs of Lucas County I received a letter in the mail. I don’t get much mail from anybody other that the two State Farm agents in Ames that think by constantly sending me junk mail I’m somehow going to sign up for their terrible insurance that has treated more than one person in my life very poorly. Switch to State Farm, not on your life Scott Richardson or Pat Brown! American Family Insurance for life!

But I digress, the letter I got in the mail was from the Chairman of the Lucas County Veterans Memorial Park Committee thanking me for including their park in my blog:



I was blown away by the letter and was humbled to receive the letter and want to say thanks!

The day that I harvested the town signs of Lucas County I didn’t explore as much as I normally would. I had to get to Des Moines to drop off my entries for the Iowa State Fair. Then I had to get to Ames to a wedding. Therefore, I didn’t take a ton of pictures in Lucas County, but here are a few that I did take:


Lucas County - Lucas
Lucas

Lucas County - Lucas

Lucas County - Lucas

Lucas County - Lucas

Lucas County - Lucas

Lucas County - Lucas

Lucas County - Derby
Derby

Lucas County - Derby

Lucas County - Russell
Russell

Lucas County - Russell

Lucas County - Russell

Lucas County - Russell

Lucas County - Russell

Lucas County - Russell

Lucas County

Lucas County - Chariton
Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Chariton

Lucas County - Williamson
Williamson

While I didn’t get to spend much time in Lucas County, I do have plans to go there again in April. Red Haw State Park is supposed to be absolutely beautiful that time of year. I also want to visit the Frontier Trading Post. It looked like a fascinating place!