Here Are 12 Iconic Iowa Sights That Will Take You Back In Time
Iowa has a rich and varied history, and these 12 iconic sights will transport you back in time. Summer is a great time to go exploring in areas of the state you haven’t seen, so be sure to put a few of these on your list of places to go while the weather is on your side!
1. Old Capitol Building, The University of Iowa, 21 N Clinton St., Iowa City
Did you know that Iowa City was the state capital for ten years? The town was built in 1839 at the request of Governor Robert Lucas as a replacement for the then-capital city of Burlington. In 1857, when Des Moines became the capital, the University of Iowa purchased the Old Capital Building. It was their first permanent building.
2. Hogback Covered Bridge, Hogback Bridge Rd., Winterset
Built in 1884 by Benton Jones over the North River, this beautiful 106-foot bridge was one of the original 19 covered bridges in Madison County. Only six remain, today.
3. American Gothic House, 300 American Gothic St., Eldon
Grant Wood immortalized this house in his "American Gothic" painting in 1930. Stop by and take your own American Gothic photo.
4. Amana Colonies
The seven villages of the Amana Colonies are over 150 years old. Enjoy a day of sightseeing, local art, locally created German food, and beautifully crafted furniture in this amazing area of Iowa.
5. James B. Weaver House, 102 Weaver Rd., Bloomfield
James B. Weaver has this home built when he settled in the newly formed town of Bloomfield in 1847. He was one of the original Iowan Republicans and served in the Civil War. He ran for president twice. The home is a classic late 1800s building that represents the kind of house that wealthy people built at the time.
6. Brucemore, 2160 Linden Dr. SE, Cedar Rapids
The Brucemore estate sits on a 26-acre plot of land in the middle of Cedar Rapids. This 19-century mansion is perfectly maintained, and open to the public. Walk the grounds and see the beautiful gardens and fruit orchard any time the gates are open. Tours of the mansion are available for purchase.
7. Toolesboro Mounds & Museum, 6568 Toolesboro Avenue, Wapello
This truly ancient Iowa treasure is one of the most accessible and well-preserved pieces of ancient culture. The five-acre site has a few large burial mounds that date back to 200 B.C.
8. Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum, 3603 236th Ave., Burr Oak, Iowa
This site is the only childhood home of Laura Ingalls Wilder that is still on its original site. Charles Ingalls managed the Masters Hotel from 1876 until 1877.
9. Mines of Spain, 8991 B Bellevue Hts., Dubuque
This is the site where Julian Dubuque was re-buried in 1897. The monument was constructed in his honor to mark and protect the area where he was buried. The masons who constructed the monument were John Carter and Nicholas Hein.
10. Abbie Gardner Cabin, Arnolds Park, Spirit Lake
The Abbie Gardner Sharp Cabin, is a fully restored home where where Gardner lived as a girl. Later she ran it as a tourist attraction. She was kidnapped by the Sioux and held captive for a few months in 1857 and eventually returned in exchange for ransom.
11. Herbert Hoover National Historic Site, 10 Parkside Dr., West Branch
Herbert Hoover was born at this home on August 10, 1874. He was the 31st president of the United States. The cottage was built by his father.
12. Reverend George B. Hitchcock House, 63788 567th Lane in Cass County
Reverend Hitchcock was an important player in the Underground Railroad. He offered help and sanctuary to escaped slaves between 1856 and 1865. The home is now managed by the county and is a historic museum.
What other amazing historical and iconic Iowa attractions should we know about?
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