Category Archives: Town Sign Project

Town Sign Project: Black Hawk County

A few weeks back I prowled around the backroads of Black Hawk County harvesting their town signs before have a delicious meal at Zeno’s. It was a good trip!

Here are some facts about Black Hawk County:
+ Population is 131,813 making it the 5th most populous county in Iowa. Below Johnson County and above Woodbury County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Waterloo.
+ Formed on February 17, 1853.
+ Named after Black Hawk, the Sauk leader during the 1832 Black Hawk War.
+ Home of Iowa State Normal School. Might go by a different name now.
+ Major highways are: I-380, US-20, US-63, US-218, IA-21, IA-27, IA-57, IA-58, IA-175, and IA-281.
+ Adjacent counties are: Bremer, Buchanan, Benton, Tama, Grundy, Butler, and Fayette.
+ Reached peak population in 1980 at 137,961.

The Black Hawk County Courthouse is a hideous eyesore:


Black Hawk County Courthouse
The Black Hawk County Courthouse in Waterloo, Iowa.

The Black Hawk County Freedom Rock is located in Cedar Falls, Iowa:


Black Hawk County Freedom Rock

Black Hawk County Freedom Rock

Black Hawk County Freedom Rock

Black Hawk County Freedom Rock

With Black Hawk County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 72 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

72 counties completed. 72.7% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the town signs of Black Hawk County:


Waterloo, Iowa
Waterloo, Iowa
Welcome to Waterloo
Population: 67,314 (-1,092)

Cedar Falls, Iowa
Cedar Falls, Iowa
Cedar Falls Iowa
Home of UNIVERSITY OF NORTHERN IOWA
Population: 40,713 (+1,457)

Evansdale, Iowa
Evansdale, Iowa
WELCOME TO EVANSDALE
Population: 4,561 (-190)

Hudson, Iowa
Hudson, Iowa
WELCOME TO HUDSON
THE GEM OF BLACKHAWK VALLEY
Population: 2,546 (+264)

La Porte City, Iowa
La Porte City, Iowa
WELCOME TO LaPorte City
HOME OF IOWA’S FIRST FFA AG MUSEUM
Population: 2,284 (-236)

Elk Run Heights, Iowa
Elk Run Heights, Iowa
WELCOME TO ELK RUN HEIGHTS
SMALL CITY FRIENDLY
BIG CITY CONVENIENT
Population: 1,069 (-48)

Dunkerton, Iowa
Dunkerton, Iowa
Welcome to DUNKERTON
‘Home of the Raiders’
Population: 842 (-10)

Gilbertville, Iowa
Gilbertville, Iowa
Welcome to Gilbertville
Population: 794 (+82)

Raymond, Iowa
Raymond, Iowa
Welcome to RAYMOND
Est. 1867
Population: 759 (-29)

The worst sign in Black Hawk County is pretty obvious. Evansdale. No need for further discussion.

I think there are two real contenders for the purple ribbon. It is Hudson and Gilbertville. While it is close, I’m going to give it to Gilbertville.


Gilbertville, Iowa
Hudson – Best in Show – Black Hawk County

There are a couple of alternate town signs in Black Hawk County:


Dunkerton, Iowa
Dunkerton – Alternate

Hudson, Iowa
Hudson – Alternate

Hudson, Iowa
Hudson – 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

Gilbertville, Iowa
Best in Show – Black Hawk County

Moingona, Iowa
Best in Show – Boone County

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Rossie, Iowa
Best in Show – Clay County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

George, Iowa
Best in Show – Lyon County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Kingsley, Iowa
Best in Show – Plymouth County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Orange City, Iowa
Best in Show – Sioux County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago County

Sloan, Iowa
Best in Show – Woodbury 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 Dickinson County.

Town Sign Project: Woodbury County

A few weeks back Jesse and I went to Woodbury County on our way to Harlan, the most direct route, and harvested the rest of the Woodbury County signs that I needed.

Here are some facts about Woodbury County:
+ The population of Woodbury County is 102,687 making it the 6th most populous county in Iowa. Below Black Hawk County and above Story County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Sioux City.
+ Established in 1851 as Wahkaw County (which is an infinitely better name), but had the name changed to Woodbury to honor Levi Woodbury. A senator, a governor and Supreme Court justice from New Hampshire.
+ The Ho-Chunk Tribe of Nebraska owns reservation land in Woodbury County.
+ The 3rd largest county by area.
+ Home of Morningside University and Briar Cliff University.
+ Major highways are: I-29, I-129, US-20, US-75, US-77, IA-12, IA-31, IA-140, IA-141, and IA-175.
+ Population peaked in 1960 at 107,849.

The Woodbury County Courthouse is fascinating looking:


Woodbury County Courthouse
The Woodbury County Courthouse in Sioux City, Iowa.

The Woodbury County Freedom Rock is located in Anthon, Iowa:


Woodbury County Freedom Rock

Woodbury County Freedom Rock

Woodbury County Freedom Rock

Woodbury County Freedom Rock

Woodbury County Freedom Rock

Woodbury County Freedom Rock

With Woodbury County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 71 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

71 counties completed. 71.7% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the town signs of Woodbury County:


Sioux City, Iowa
Sioux City, Iowa
WELCOME TO SIOUX CITY
Population: 85,797 (+3,029)

Sergeant Bluff, Iowa
Sergeant Bluff, Iowa
Sergeant Bluff
est. 1854
Population: 5,015 (+788)

Moville, Iowa
Moville, Iowa
Welcome to MOVILLE
est. 1887
Eastern Gateway to Western Hospitality
Home of the WOODBURY COUNTY FAIR
Population: 1,687 (+69)

Sloan, Iowa
Sloan, Iowa
Welcome to Sloan
A Great Place to Grow
Population: 1,042 (+69)

Lawton, Iowa
Lawton, Iowa
Welcome to LAWTON
Hands down… the best town
Population: 943 (+35)

Correctionville, Iowa
Correctionville, Iowa
Welcome to Correctionville
Jog down our main street
Population: 766 (-55)

Anthon, Iowa
Anthon, Iowa
135th Anniversary
“My Kind of Town!”
Anthon, Iowa
1888-2013
Population: 545 (-20)

Pierson, Iowa
Pierson, Iowa
PIERSON
SMALL TOWN WITH A BIG HEART
Population: 337 (-29)

Danbury, Iowa
Danbury, Iowa
WELCOME TO THE CITY OF DANBURY
GEM CITY OF NORTHWEST IOWA
Population: 320 (-28)

Salix, Iowa
Salix, Iowa
Welcome to SALIX
Population: 295 (-68)

Bronson, Iowa
Bronson, Iowa
BRONSON
1 1/2 MILE
a SMALL CITY that is a BIG COMMUNITY
Population: 294 (-28)

Hornick, Iowa
Hornick, Iowa
WELCOME TO HORNICK
Population: 253
Established in 1887
Home of the Willow Workers 4-H Club
Population: 255 (+30)

Cushing, Iowa
Cushing, Iowa
Welcome To CUSHING
Population: 230 (+10)

Smithland, Iowa
Smithland, Iowa
Welcome to SMITHLAND
The Oldest City in Woodbury County
Home of the First School House in Woodbury County
Population: 181 (-43)

Oto, Iowa
Oto, Iowa
OTO
Population: 72 (-36)

Climbing Hill, Iowa - Unincorporated
Climbing Hill, Iowa – Unincorporated
WELCOME – 6 MI.
CLIMBING HILL
EST. 1868

There are lots of good signs in Woodbury County. So the worst one is pretty easy to pick out. It is the snorefest sign in Sergeant Bluff.

What is the best sign in Woodbury County? What gets the purple ribbon? I really like the sign for Sioux City. For a big city, it has a surprisingly good sign. Not unlike Cedar Rapids. I love the sign in Bronson and Hornick and Anthon and Lawton and Oto. But I think the Best in Show goes to Sloan.


Sloan, Iowa
Sloan – Best in Show – Woodbury County

There are several alternate signs in Woodbury County:


Sergeant Bluff, Iowa
Sergeant Bluff – Alternate

Bronson, Iowa
Bronson – Alternate

Anthon, Iowa
Anthon – Alternate

Pierson, Iowa
Pierson – Alternate

Pierson, Iowa
Pierson – Alternate

Correctionville, Iowa
Correctionville – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Rossie, Iowa
Best in Show – Clay County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

George, Iowa
Best in Show – Lyon County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Kingsley, Iowa
Best in Show – Plymouth County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Orange City, Iowa
Best in Show – Sioux County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago County

Sloan, Iowa
Best in Show – Woodbury 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 Black Hawk County.

Town Sign Project: Plymouth County

A few weeks back I cruised around Plymouth County harvesting their town signs.

Here are some facts about Plymouth County:
+ Population 25,141 making it the 25th most populous county in Iowa. Below Benton County and above Bremer County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Le Mars.
+ Formed on January 15, 1851.
+ Named after Plymouth, Massachusetts.
+ Home of the Ice Cream Capital of the World.
+ Major highways are US-75, IA-3, IA-12, IA-60, and IA-140.
+ Adjacent counties are Sioux, Cherokee, and Woodbury.
+ Currently at peak population.

Plymouth County has a pretty courthouse:


Plymouth County Courthouse
The Plymouth County Courthouse in Le Mars, Iowa.

The Plymouth County Freedom Rock is located in Kingsley, Iowa.


Plymouth County Freedom Rock

Plymouth County Freedom Rock

Plymouth County Freedom Rock

Plymouth County Freedom Rock

Plymouth County Freedom Rock

With Plymouth County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 70 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

70 counties completed. 70.7% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the town signs of Plymouth County:


Le Mars, Iowa
Le Mars, Iowa
Welcome To
LE MARS
Ice Cream Capital of the World
Population: 10,571 (+745)

Remsen, Iowa
Remsen, Iowa
REMSEN
“Neat and Hard to Beat”
Population: 1,678 (+15)

Akron, Iowa
Akron, Iowa
WELCOME TO AKRON
ALL TRAILS LEAD TO AKRON
PEACEFUL VALLEY OF OPPORTUNITY
EST. 1882
Population: 1,558 (+72)

Kingsley, Iowa
Kingsley, Iowa
WELCOME TO Kingsley
SOME BIGGER… NONE BETTER
Population: 1,396 (-15)

Hinton, Iowa
Hinton, Iowa
Welcome to HINTON
“Home Of The Black Hawks”
Population: 935 (+7)

Merrill, Iowa
Merrill, Iowa
WELCOME TO MERRILL
AT THE HEART OF PLYMOUTH COUNTY
Population: 717 (-38)

Brunsville, Iowa
Brunsville, Iowa
Welcome to BRUNSVILLE
ESTABLSIHED 1911
Four Seasons Garden Club
Population: 129 (-22)

Westfield, Iowa
Westfield, Iowa
Welcome to WESTFIELD
Celebrating 150 Years 1856-2006
Population: 123 (-9)

Oyens, Iowa
Oyens, Iowa
OYENS
A NICE PLACE TO CALL HOME
Population: 92 (-11)

Craig, Iowa
Craig, Iowa
Welcome to CRAIG
Est. 1910
Population 102
“We’re Small, But Big Enough To Know You.”
Population: 79 (-10)

Struble, Iowa
Struble, Iowa
STRUBLE, IOWA
hometown of
GENERAL JACK NICHOLSON AND AMBASSADOR JIM NICHOLSON
Population: 67 (-11)

Plymouth County has a solid, but perhaps not spectacular set of town signs. I don’t know that there is a terrible sign in the collection, but if I have to give a last place trophy out, it would go to Le Mars.

But who gets the purple ribbon? Who gets Best in Show? I’m going to have to go with Kingsley.


Kingsley, Iowa
Kingsley – Best in Show – Plymouth County

There were a couple of alternate town signs in Plymouth County:


Kingsley, Iowa
Kingsley – Alternate

Remsen, Iowa
Remsen – Alternate

Westfield, Iowa
Westfield – Alternate

Merrill, Iowa
Merrill – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Rossie, Iowa
Best in Show – Clay County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

George, Iowa
Best in Show – Lyon County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Kingsley, Iowa
Best in Show – Plymouth County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Orange City, Iowa
Best in Show – Sioux County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago 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 Woodbury County.

Town Sign Project: Sioux County

I need to start by pointing out that in the chaos that was my morning yesterday I jacked up Dawn’s #INSTAGOOD submission by accidentally posting Sarah’s post twice. So to make amends…

This was Sarah’s submission:


WEEK 346 - INSTAGOOD - SARAH KARBER
Sarah Karber

This is Dawn’s submission:


WEEK 347 - #INSTAGOOD - DAWN KRAUSE
Dawn Krause

This is already fixed on the website.

I’ll be better in the future. I probably won’t, but I can claim that I will be.

+++++++

Several weeks back I took to the open road and harvested the town signs of Sioux County. Here are some facts about Sioux County:

+ Population is 34,900 making it the 20th most populous county in Iowa. Below Wapello County and above Lee County.
+ The largest town is Sioux Center. The county seat is Orange City.
+ Sioux County was formed on January 15, 1851.
+ Named after the Sioux tribe.
+ Home of the Orange City Tulip Festival.
+ Home of Dort University and Northwestern College.
+ Major highways are: US-18, US-75, IA-10, IA-12, and IA-60.
+ Adjacent counties are Lyon, O’Brien, and Plymouth.
+ Is currently at peak population.

Sioux County has a beautiful courthouse:


Sioux County Courthouse
The Sioux County Courthouse located in Orange City, Iowa.

The Sioux County Freedom Rock is located in Hawarden, Iowa:


Sioux County Freedom Rock

Sioux County Freedom Rock

Sioux County Freedom Rock

With Sioux County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 69 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

69 counties completed. 69.7% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the town signs of Sioux County:


Sioux Center, Iowa
Sioux Center, Iowa
Sioux Center
growing bright
Population: 8,229 (+1,181)

Orange City, Iowa
Orange City, Iowa
Welcome to ORANGE CITY
Population: 6,627 (+267)

Rock Valley, Iowa
Rock Valley, Iowa
Rock Valley
Place of opportunities
Population: 4,059 (+705)

Hawarden, Iowa
Hawarden, Iowa
WELCOME TO HAWARDEN
ESTABLISHED 1887
Population: 2,700 (+154)

Hull, Iowa
Hull, Iowa
WELCOME TO HULL
Population: 2,384 (+1,168)

Alton, Iowa
Alton, Iowa
Welcome to ALTON
Stop & Visit our Historical Attractions!
Population: 1,248 (+541)

Hospers, Iowa
Hospers, Iowa
Hospers Public Library & Museum
Population: 718 (+20)

Boyden, Iowa
Boyden, Iowa
1889
ESTABLISHED
BOYDEN
Population: 701 (+3)

Ireton, Iowa
Ireton, Iowa
Welcome to Ireton
est. 1882
Small Town Values with Big City Goals
Population: 590 (-19)

Granville, Iowa
Granville, Iowa
Welcome to GRANVILLE
Home of Black Soil
Population: 310 (-2)

Maurice, Iowa
Maurice, Iowa
Welcome to Maurice
Small in size, but on the rise
Population: 265 (-10)

Chatsworth, Iowa
Chatsworth, Iowa
CHATSWORTH
Population: 75 (-4)

Matlock, Iowa
Matlock, Iowa
Welcome to Matlock
Population: 74 (-13)

Sioux County has a solid collection of signs, but maybe nothing spectacular. The worst by far is Hospers. The best I could do there was get a picture of their library. Which is strange because Hospers is near a major highway and has a FASCINATING art collection. Hospers is also the closest I’ve come to dying on this trip. A woman almost hit me with her car while I was walking towards this FASCINATING sculpture located in the middle of one of their business district intersections. I have to confess, I was staring at my phone and not paying attention.

To her credit, the woman did stop and talk to me for several minutes. We had a great conversation about the town’s FASCINATING art. She then reminded me not to look at my phone while walking in the middle of the road. Which I confess, is solid advice.

What town gets the purple ribbon for Best in Show in Sioux County? I am fascinated by Granville’s “Home of Black Soil” sign. Turns out, BLACK SOIL is a 1930 novel by Josephine Donovan. A native of Granville. The novel is set in Granville. I do like the Maurice sign. Although I don’t know what hot air balloons have to do with their town. I think that might be a mountain in the background as well. Maybe that is the Loess Hils, but Maurice isn’t really in the Loess Hills. Plus Maurice is home to the Famous Fire Escape Slide. That is something that should be on their sign! I have to give it to Orange City and their wooden shoe sign.


Orange City, Iowa
Orange City – Best in Show – Sioux County

There are a few alternate town signs in Sioux County:


Orange City, Iowa
Orange City – Alternate

Alton, Iowa
Alton – Alternate

Alton, Iowa
Alton – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Rossie, Iowa
Best in Show – Clay County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

George, Iowa
Best in Show – Lyon County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Orange City, Iowa
Best in Show – Sioux County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago 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 Plymouth County.

Town Sign Project: Lyon County

Harvesting the town signs of Lyon County was a two step process. I was hoping to get it done in one trip, but my first trip to the northwest corner of Iowa was halted by bad weather. I ran into a hail storm when I was in Rock Rapids. It was bad enough, that I decided to head south and then back east. Then I went back up there a few weeks later with Teresa and harvested the rest of the signs that weather had prevented me from grabbing.

Here are some facts about Lyon County:
+ The population is 11,800 making it the 64th most populous county in Iowa. Below Chickasaw County and above Shelby County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Rock Rapids.
+ County was originally named Buncombe County, but name was changed in 1862 to honor General Nathaniel Lyon who was killed in the Battle of Wilson’s Creek in Missouri during the Civil War. He was also involved in massacring members of the Pomo tribe in the Bloody Island Massacre, so not really a great guy. Perhaps they should go back to Buncombe County. There is a chance that Buncombe was a great guy. Not much of a chance, but you never know.
+ Home of the Gitchie Manitou Preserve which contains some of the oldest exposed bedrock in the United States and was also the site of a mass murder of teenagers in 1973.
+ Major highways are US-18, US-75, IA-9, and IA-182.
+ Adjacent counties are: Osceola and Sioux.
+ Population peaked in 1920 at 15,431.

The Lyon County Courthouse looks an awful lot like the Boone Courthouse:


Lyon County Courthouse
The Lyon County Courthouse located in Rock Rapids, Iowa.

The Lyon County Freedom Rock is located in George, Iowa:


Lyon County Freedom Rock

Lyon County Freedom Rock

Lyon County Freedom Rock

Lyon County Freedom Rock

With Lyon County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 68 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

68 counties completed. 68.7% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Lyon County:


Rock Rapids, Iowa
Rock Rapids, Iowa
Welcome to ROCK RAPIDS
Population: 2,611 (+62)

George, Iowa
George, Iowa
WELCOME TO GEORGE
A Great Place to Raise a Family
Population: 1,077 (-3)

Inwood, Iowa
Inwood, Iowa
Welcome to Inwood
Population: 928 (+114)

Larchwood, Iowa
Larchwood, Iowa
Weclome!
TO LARCHWOOD
CORNERSTONE OF IOWA
Population: 926 (+60)

Doon, Iowa
Doon, Iowa
Welcome to DOON
Population: 619 (+42)

Little Rock, Iowa
Little Rock, Iowa
LITTLE ROCK
HOME OF THE CORN SHOW
Population: 439 (-20)

Lester, Iowa
Lester, Iowa
Village of Lester
Welcome – please drive safely!
Population: 296 (+2)

Alvord, Iowa
Alvord, Iowa
Welcome to ALVORD
Population: 206 (+10)

I think Lyon County has a solid collection of signs. There isn’t a show stopper, but there isn’t a bad sign. If I had to pick the worst sign, it is clearly Rock Rapids and their boring sign. Rock Rapids also has a bunch of really cool murals, so it is a shame that their sign is so boring.

But who takes home the purple ribbon? I like the signs of Larchwood, Little Rock and I find Doon’s sign to be fascinating. But I’m going to have to give it to George. It looks like it was painted by their Jr. High art class, but not the best students in the art class. In a word, it is amazing!


George, Iowa
George – Best in Show – Lyon County

There are a few alternate town signs in Lyon County:


Larchwood, Iowa
Larchwood – Alternate

Larchwood, Iowa
Larchwood – Alternate

Inwood, Iowa
Inwood – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Rossie, Iowa
Best in Show – Clay County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

George, Iowa
Best in Show – Lyon County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago 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 hit the open roads of Sioux County.

Town Sign Project: Clay County

A month or so back Teresa and I cruised around Clay County and harvested the rest of their town signs. I actually pieced Clay County together over like maybe 4 different trips, so I didn’t explore it as thoroughly as some counties, but still saw some interesting things.

Here are some facts about Clay County:

+ Population is 16,138 making it the 48th most populous county in Iowa. Below Madison County and above Floyd County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Spencer.
+ Named after Henry Clay, Jr., a colonel who died in the Mexican-American War. Son of a much more famous father.
+ Home of the Clay County Fair, which some people errantly claim is better than the Iowa State Fair.
+ Site of the Spencer fire of 1931 where 80 businesses were destroyed by fireworks and led to fireworks being banned in Iowa.
+ Major highways are: US-18, US-71, and IA-10.
+ Adjacent counties are Dickinson, Palo Alto, Buena Vista, and O’Brien.
+ Population peaked in 1980 at 19,576.

Clay County has a beautiful courthouse:


Clay County Courthouse
The Clay County Courthouse located in Spencer, Iowa.

The Clay County Freedom Rock is located in Everly, Iowa:


Clay County Freedom Rock

Clay County Freedom Rock

Clay County Freedom Rock

Clay County Freedom Rock

With Clay County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 67 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

67 counties completed. 67.7% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Clay County:


Spencer, Iowa
Spencer, Iowa
SPENCER
Population: 11,325 (+92)

Everly, Iowa
Everly, Iowa
First in the Nation in Education FINE Award Winners
Everly
Home of the Cattlefeeders
Population: 575 (-28)

Royal, Iowa
Royal, Iowa
ROYAL
A PRINCE OF A COMMUNITY
EST. 1900
Population: 379 (-67)

Peterson, Iowa
Peterson, Iowa
Welcome to PETERSON
Established 1856
Population: 322 (-2)

Fostoria, Iowa
Fostoria, Iowa
The City of FOSTORIA
Welcomes You
Population: 230 (-1)

Dickens, Iowa
Dickens, Iowa
DICKENS
Population: 146 (-39)

Webb, Iowa
Webb, Iowa
WELCOME
WEBB
1900
Population: 138 (-3)

Greenville, Iowa
Greenville, Iowa
GREENVILLE CITY PARK
Population: 71 (-4)

Rossie, Iowa
Rossie, Iowa
Elev. 1405.00′
ROSSIE
We’ve Got More than…
ONE HORSE
Population: 49 (-21)

Gillett Grove, Iowa
Gillett Grove, Iowa
WELCOME to GILLETT GROVE
HAPPY VALLEY USA
Population: 30 (-19)

For the most part, Clay County had a real solid collection of signs. But there are a couple of duds. The best I could find in Dickens was an old railroad depot sign. The best I could find in Greenville was a city park sign. For last place I’m going to give it to Greenville.

There are a few in the running for Best in Show. I really like the town signs for Everly, Royal, and Gillet Grove. However, the purple ribbon is going to Rossie for the clever tag line. Although when I visited the town, I didn’t see a place to get groceries or beer. Maybe a place to get gas.


Rossie, Iowa
Rossie – Best in Show – Clay County

There are a few alternates in Clay County:


Everly, Iowa
Everly – Alternate

Everly, Iowa
Everly – Alternate

Royal, Iowa
Royal – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Rossie, Iowa
Best in Show – Clay County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago 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 the town signs of Lyon County.

Town Sign Project: Osceola County

A month or so back I made a trip to Osceola County to harvest their town signs. It was a trip that I ended up having to cut short because I ran into a hail storm. It wasn’t the most fun.

Here are some facts about Osceola County:

+ Population is 6,016 making it the 96th most populous county in Iowa. Below Taylor County and above Audubon County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Sibley.
+ The newest county in Iowa. The county government met for the first time on January 1, 1872.
+ The smallest county in Iowa by total area and third smallest by land area.
+ Named for Seminole chief Osceola.
+ Home of Iowa’s highest natural point, Hawkeye Point. Elevation of 1,670 feet.
+ Major highways are: US-59, IA-9, and IA-60.
+ Adjacent counties are Dickinson, O’Brien, and Lyon.
+ Population peaked in 1940 at 10,607.

The Osceola County Courthouse is mostly blah looking:


Osceola County Courthouse
The Osceola County Courthouse in Sibley, Iowa.

The Osceola County Freedom Rock is located in Ashton, Iowa:


Osceola County Freedom Rock

Osceola County Freedom Rock

Osceola County Freedom Rock

With Osceola County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 66 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

66 counties completed. 66.7% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of Osceola County:


Sibley, Iowa
Sibley, Iowa
WELCOME TO Sibley
The HIGHLIGHT of IOWA
Population: 2,860 (+62)

Ocheyedan, Iowa
Ocheyedan, Iowa
OCHEYEDAN
HOME OF THE MOUND
Population: 439 (-51)

Ashton, Iowa
Ashton, Iowa
Welcome to ASHTON
Est. 1882
Population: 436(-22)

Melvin, Iowa
Melvin, Iowa
MELVIN
THE BIGGEST LITTLE CITY IN IOWA
Population: 199 (-15)

Harris, Iowa
Harris, Iowa
Welcome To HARRIS
Est. 1889
Home of the Wolves
Population: 151 (-19)


May City, Iowa – Unincorporated
MAY CITY
Est. 1889
WORLD’S ONLY MAY CITY

Osceola County only has 5 incorporated towns and while there isn’t a great town sign in the county, there really isn’t a terrible one. So I’m not going to give out a last place ribbon. The purple ribbon I’m going to give to Melvin:


Melvin, Iowa
Melvin – Best in Show – Osceola County

Only Melvin had an alternate town sign:


Melvin, Iowa
Melvin – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

Melvin, Iowa
Best in Show – Osceola County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago County

Joice, Iowa
Best in Show – Worth County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

What county we will visit next time we visit THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT is slightly open in the air at this moment. But we will visit somewhwere.

Town Sign Project: O’Brien County

A month or so back I made a trip to O’Brien County to harvest their town signs.

Here are some facts about O’Brien County:

+ Population 13,796 making it the 56th most populous county in Iowa. Below Harrison County and above Allamakee County.
+ Largest town is Sheldon. The county seat is Primghar.
+ Named for William Smith O’Brien an Irish revolutionary.
+ The county seat was named from the initials of the eight persons involved in platting the town.
+ Home of an Indian Village State Preserve.
+ Major highways are US-18, US-59, IA-10, IA-60, and IA-143.
+ Adjacent counties are Osceola, Clay, Cherokee, and Sioux.
+ Population peaked in 1940 at 19,293.

The O’Brien County Courthouse looks an awful lot like Boone’s Courthouse:


O'Brien County Courthouse
The O’Brien County Courthouse located in Primghar, Iowa.

The O’Brien Freedom Rock is located in Sanborn, Iowa:


O'Brien County Freedom Rock

O'Brien County Freedom Rock

O'Brien County Freedom Rock

With O’Brien County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 65 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

65 counties completed. 65.7% of the Cyclone State conquered.

Here are the town signs of O’Brien County:


Sheldon, Iowa
Sheldon, Iowa (Partially in Sioux County)
Welcome to Sheldon
Population: 5,512 (-495)

Hartley, Iowa
Hartley, Iowa
Hartley
the city with a heart
Population: 1,605 (-67)

Sanborn, Iowa
Sanborn, Iowa
SANBORN
ESTABLISHED 1878
Population: 1,392 (-12)

Paullina, Iowa
Paullina, Iowa
PAULLINA
Population: 982 (-74)

Primghar, Iowa
Primghar, Iowa
WELCOME TO PRIMGHAR
Population: 896 (-13)

Sutherland, Iowa
Sutherland, Iowa
Welcome to SUTHERLAND
Est. 1881 & Inc. 1883
Population: 629 (-20)

Calument, Iowa
Calumet, Iowa
CALUMET
Population: 146 (-24)

Archer, Iowa
Archer, Iowa
ARCHER
QUASICENTENIAL
JULY 5, 6, 7
125 YEARS OF SMALL TOWN PRIDE
Population: 117 (-14)

Germantown, Iowa - Unincorporated
Germantown, Iowa – Unincorporated
Welcome To Germantown
SETTLED 1882

I think that O’Brien County has a very solid set of signs. There isn’t any giant boring rock monstrosities. But the worst one is very evident. It is Calumet.

The purple ribbon this week is a little bit harder to decide. I do like Hartley’s sign. I also really like the sign for Germantown. Sutherland and Sanborn also have solid signs. But I’m giving Best in Show to Paullina.


Paullina, Iowa
Paullina – Best in Show – O’Brien County

There are several alternate town signs in O’Brien County:


Sutherland, Iowa
Sutherland – Alternate

Sanborn, Iowa
Sanborn – Alternate

Primghar, Iowa
Primghar – Alternate

Primghar, Iowa
Primghar – Alternate

Primghar, Iowa
Primghar – Alternate

Paullina, Iowa
Paullina – Alternate

Paullina, Iowa
Paullina – Alternate

Paullina, Iowa
Paullina – Alternate

Calument, Iowa
Calumet – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

Paullina, Iowa
Best in Show – O’Brien County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago 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 Osceola County.

Town Sign Project: Cherokee County

A month or so back I made a trip to Cherokee County to harvest their town signs. Cherokee is a beautiful town and is on my list of towns I would like to visit again in the future.

Here are some facts about Cherokee County:

+ Population is 11,658 making it the 66th most populous county in Iowa. Below Shelby County and above Louisa County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Cherokee.
+ Formed on January 15, 1851.
+ Named after the indigenous tribe.
+ Major highways are US-59, IA-3, IA-7, IA-31, and IA-143.
+ Adjacent counties are O’Brien, Buena Vista, Ida, Woodbury, and Plymouth.

The Cherokee County Courthouse is fairly hideous:


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

The Cherokee County Freedom Rock is located in Cherokee, Iowa:


Cherokee County Freedom Rock

Cherokee County Freedom Rock

Cherokee County Freedom Rock

With Cherokee County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 64 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

64 counties completed. 64.6% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the town signs of Cherokee County:


Cherokee, Iowa
Cherokee, Iowa
CHEROKEE WELCOMES YOU
Population: 5,199 (-36)

Marcus, Iowa
Marcus, Iowa
Welcome To MARCUS
Pride in the Past
Faith in the Future
Population: 1,079 (-38)

Aurelia, Iowa
Aurelia, Iowa
WELCOME TO AURELIA
Population: 968 (-68)

Quimby, Iowa
Quimby, Iowa
WELCOME TO QUIMBY
Population: 249 (-70)

Washta, Iowa
Washta, Iowa
Welcome to Washta
COLDEST SPOT IN IOWA
-47
1912
FOUNDED IN 1868
Population: 209 (-39)

Cleghorn, Iowa
Cleghorn, Iowa
CLEGHORN
Population: 240 (0)

Meriden, Iowa
Meriden, Iowa
MERIDEN
A CITY WHERE PEOPLE CARE & SHARE
Population: 161 (+2)

Larrabee, Iowa
Larrabee, Iowa
LARRABEE
WHERE TOWN & COUNTRY UNITE
EST. 1887
Population 123 (-9)

I think Cherokee County has a really solid set of town signs. I think the only one that is bad is Quimby’s sign, which is more of a town announcement sign than anything else. Nothing wrong with town announcement signs, but they shouldn’t be the town’s primary town sign.

While I like the town signs of Aurelia, Marcus, and Meriden. It really comes down to Larrabee and Washta for me and the purple ribbon. But in the end the Washta sign is so much fun that it gets Best in Show.


Washta, Iowa
Washta – Best in Show – Cherokee County

There are several alternate town signs in Cherokee County:


Quimby, Iowa
Quimby – Alternate

Marcus, Iowa
Marcus – Alternate

Cherokee, Iowa
Cherokee – Alternate

Cherokee, Iowa
Cherokee – Alternate

Cherokee, Iowa
Cherokee – Alternate

Aurelia, Iowa
Aurelia – Alternate

Aurelia, Iowa
Aurelia – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Washta, Iowa
Best in Show – Cherokee County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago County

Joice, Iowa
Best in Show – Worth County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

The next time we hit the backroads of Iowa for THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT, our Toyota will end up in O’Brien County.

Town Sign Project: Jackson County

Back at the end of January I went to Jackson County to harvest the balance of their town signs. This was a big one to cross off the list for me, because my strategy (if you can call it that) for this project has been all over the place. However, for a few months now, my strategy has been to finish what I call the cross of Iowa. All the counties north, south, east, and west of Boone County. From there, I will knock out the corners of Iowa. First the southwest, then the northwest, then the northeast, and then finally the southeast. Obviously, not everything has went exactly to that plan, as I finished the southwest corner before I finished the cross, but finishing Jackson County meant that the cross is finished and now I can devote myself to knocking out the northwest corner.

Here are some facts about Jackson County:

+ Population is 19,485. Making it the 36th most populous county in Iowa. Below Fayette County and above Poweshiek County.
+ The largest town and county seat is Maquoketa.
+ Formed on December 21, 1837.
+ Named after one of the worst humans to ever be President of the United States and undoubtedly the worst person to have an Iowa county named after them… vile piece of human refuse Andrew Jackson.
+ Home of one of the best state parks in Iowa Maquoketa Caves State Park. Also home to Bellevue State Park.
+ Home of the only Iowa town that is an island.
+ Major highways are: US-52, US-61, US-67, IA-62, and IA-64.
+ Adjacent counties are: Clinton, Dubuque, and Jones.
+ Population peaked in 1880 at 23,771.

For a modern looking courthouse, I don’t hate the Jackson County Courthouse:


Jackson County Courthouse
The Jackson County Courthouse in Maquoketa, Iowa.

The Jackson County Freedom Rock is located in Bellevue, Iowa:


Jackson County Freedom Rock

Jackson County Freedom Rock

Jackson County Freedom Rock

With Jackson County conquered, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 63 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

63 counties completed. 63.6% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the town signs of Jackson County:


Maquoketa, Iowa
Maquoketa, Iowa
MAQUOKETA
Population: 6,128 (-13)

Bellevue, Iowa
Bellevue, Iowa
BELLEVUE
Population: 2,363 (+172)

Preston, Iowa
Preston, Iowa
WELCOME TO PRESTON
Population: 949 (-63)

Sabula, Iowa
Sabula, Iowa
Welcome to SABULA
Iowa’s Island City
Population: 506 (-70)

Miles, Iowa
Miles, Iowa
WELCOME TO MILES
Population: 408 (-37)

Andrew, Iowa
Andrew, Iowa
Welcome to the Heart of Jackson County
ANDREW
Population: 380 (-54)

La Motte, Iowa
La Motte, Iowa
WELCOME TO LA MOTTE
Population: 237 (-23)

Monmouth, Iowa
Monmouth, Iowa
Monmouth Co-Ed 4-H Welcomes You
Population: 129 (-24)

Springbrook, Iowa
Springbrook, Iowa
EST. 1906
Springbrook
Population: 143 (-1)

Saint Donatus, Iowa
St. Donatus, Iowa
ST. DONATUS
Population: 120 (-15)

Baldwin, Iowa
Baldwin, Iowa
WELCOME TO BALDWIN
Population: 99 (-10)

Spragueville, Iowa
Spragueville, Iowa
THE SPRAGUEVILLE COMMUNITY WELCOMES YOU
FOUNDED 1841
Lauren Sprague
“DOWN BY THE OLD MILL STREAM”
Population: 92 (+11)

It should be noted that Zwingle is also partially in Jackson County, but it is mostly in Dubuque County, so I will share that sign when we get to Dubuque County.

Jackson County is not a great collection of town signs. Mostly a lot of tombstone looking signs. It is very disappointing, considering that Jackson County is a very beautiful County. I love Bellevue and Saint Donatus and Maquoketa as towns, but they all have terrible signs. But I would have to give the worst sign to Monmouth, which is more a 4-H sign than a town sign.

There are a few town signs in Jackson County I do like though. Andrew is solid. As is Spragueville, but I’m giving the purple ribbon to La Motte.


La Motte, Iowa
La Motte – Best in Show – Jackson County

Preston is the only town sign with an alternate town sign.


Preston, Iowa
Preston – 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

Readlyn, Iowa
Best in Show – Bremer County

Storm Lake, Iowa
Best in Show – Buena Vista 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

Lowden, Iowa
Best in Show – Cedar County

Dougherty, Iowa
Best in Show – Cerro Gordo County

Murray, Iowa
Best in Show – Clarke County

Low Moor, Iowa
Best in Show – Clinton County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Weldon, Iowa
Best in Show – Decatur 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

Modale, Iowa
Best in Sow – Harrison County

Bradgate, iowa
Best in Show – Humboldt County

Ida Grove, Iowa
Best in Show – Ida County

Millersburg, Iowa
Best in Show – Iowa County

La Motte, Iowa
Best in Show – Jackson County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Anamosa, Iowa
Best in Show – Jones County

Titonka, Iowa
Best in Show – Kossuth County

Springville, Iowa
Best in Show – Linn County

Lucas, Iowa
Best in Show – Lucas County

East Peru, Iowa
Best in Show – Madison County

Leighton, Iowa
Best in Show – Mahaska County

Pleasantville, Iowa
Best in Show – Marion County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Malvern, Iowa
Best in Show – Mills County

Onawa, Iowa
Best in Show – Monona County

Melrose, Iowa
Best in Show – Monroe County

Grant, Iowa
Best in Show – Montgomery County

College Springs, Iowa
Best in Show – Page County

Mallard, Iowa
Best in Show – Palo Alto County

Plover, Iowa
Best in Show – Pocahontas County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Walnut, Iowa
Best in Show – Pottawattamie County

Malcom, Iowa
Best in Show – Poweshiek County

Maloy, Iowa
Best in Show – Ringgold County

Nemaha, Iowa
Best in Show – Sac County

Elk Horn, Iowa
Best in Show – Shelby County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Tama, Iowa
Best in Show – Tama County

Gravity, Iowa
Best in Show – Taylor County

Creston, Iowa
Best in Show – Union County

New Virginia, Iowa
Best in Show – Warren County

Humeston, Iowa
Best in Show – Wayne County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Buffalo Center, Iowa
Best in Show – Winnebago 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 Cherokee County.