Iowa Old Press

Iowa Recorder
Green, Butler co. Iowa
January 17, 1930

Des Moines, December 22 -- Charles City has an unearned reputation for being the coldest spot in Iowa, states the Weather and Crop Bureau of the Iowa Department of Agriculture. But in the last ten years, in the three months, December, January and February, it has qualified but once in 30 months as the coldest spot in Iowa. More often the banner for lowest temperature in any winter month is carried by Decorah, Rock Rapids, Forest City, Estherville, Britt, Sanborn, Postville, Inwood or Washta. Probably the name Washta appears most frequently, and certainly it leads the procession for the lowest temperature ever recorded in Iowa, which is 47 degrees below zero, on January 12, 1912.

All memories of the oldest inhabitants to the contrary, this low temperature at Washta is undoubtedly the record in Iowa for more than a century, when records of reliable thermometers only are considered. It is perhaps a surprise to the old timers to know that there are almost continuous official thermometer readings in Iowa dating from October 22, 1819 -- more than 111 years.

One of the surprises is, that in January, 1927, the coldest spot in Iowa was at Stockport, in the extreme southeast portion of the state, when 27 degrees below zero was recorded on the 15th, while Charles City, in that same month, fell clear out of sight in the race with only 14 below on the 22nd.

The explanation of the whole matter lies in the fact that the temperatures telegraphed and published by the United States Weather Bureau are those of the larger cities of the state which are subject to the influence of much concentrated consumption of fuel and protecting smoke blankets, and these are particularly effective on calm, clear nights, when the lowest temperatures are experienced in the open country.

When a stiff wind is blowing, or when the sky is uniformly and densely clouded throughout the state, there is very little difference in temperature between the cities and the open country. It so happens that Charles City is the smallest of the cities from which Iowa temperatures are telegraphed for publication in the daily newspapers and its latitude is farthest north. Though its temperatures are the lowest known to the press and the public at the time of occurrence, they are often 10 degrees higher than at nearby areas in the surrounding country.

[submitted by S.F.; Feb. 2004]

Iowa Recorder
Green, Butler co. Iowa
January 29, 1930

News & Comment About Iowa People & Events.

Monument Wanted to Mark Blackhawk's Grave in Davis County
What is supposed to be the last resting place of Chief Blackhawk, on the banks of the Des Moines river in the northeastern part of Davis county, is to have a permanent marking with the erection of a suitable monument. Edgar Harlan, Curator of the State Historical Department, told a group of Des Moines men the other day that the site of Blackhawk's grave was selected by the chief himself, but his remains fell into the custody of a dentist and his skeleton afterwards adorned the office of that tooth artist. But, Mr. Harlan pointed out, this does not detract from the historical significance of the spot that Blackhawk had selected as his final resting place.

College Students Carved Their Names
Before they had left college a number of students of Iowa State College at Ames used their jack knives to carve their names in the soft stone of a bridge of the chicago Northwestern railroad between the college and the north woods. The bridge is now being repaired and the lettering was discovered by workmen. On one wing wall is the name of W.J. Eck, formerly of Pleasant Plain, class of '95, now assistant to the vice president of the Southern railroad and in charge of all signals and electrical equipment. Among other names found are those of Glenn D. Herald, formerly of Farley, class of '97, now with the American Telegraph and Telephone Company, New York; Andrew Brown, formerly of LeClaire, class of '97, now of Prosser, Wash.; and the late Guy S. Brewer, Des Moines, also class of '97, who was a colonel in the Rainbow division in the World War.

Another Ferry Boat at McGregor
The collapse of the bridge project across the Mississippi river, connecting Prairie du Chien with Marquette, prompted a number of business men in McGregor to form a syndicate and procure another ferry boat. The boat was purchased in St. Louis and will be brought to McGregor as soon as the ice goes out. It will supplement the ferry service of Rob Roy and the Manamingo and will take care of the increased traffic that is expected to accrue from the newly paved highway No. 18.

Sky Brilliant as Mercury Dropped Below Zero
Walter S. Beall, of West Union, Fayette county, says that on one of those below zero mornings about the middle of January the sky presented a brilliant spectacle. Very large sun dogs banked the sun on either side, while at three other points on the cloud rim above the horizon were bright spots. At zenith was an arc, rainbow hued to the southeast, against the sun. Observers say they never beheld a similar sight.

Pheasant Breaks Windshield
State Senator Chas. T. Rogers and Edward Ruppelt, of Grundy Center, were driving to Marshalltown when a pheasant flew into the windshield as they were nearing Marshalltown. The glass was shattered and both men were more or less cut. They drove into Marshalltown and stopped near the hospital for treatment. When they opened the door of the car, the pheasant, apparently stunned and unknown to the motorists to be in the car, flew from the back seat and made its get away down the street.

Chickasaw County School Girl Wins Honors
Miss Irma Merritt daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W.C. Merritt who reside three and one half miles east of New Hampton has been awarded a gold medal and fifteen dollars first prize for the state for the safety essay contest conducted by the Highway Education Board. The contest was open to only pupils of the seventh and eighth grades. Miss Merritt won first place in the grade contest for the public school last winter.

The East Comes to Iowa for Horses
E.H. Foote, of New York, shipped a car of horses, 28 head, by express, from Postville, Allamakee county, recently. Mr. Foote declared the animals the finest he had secured anywhere in the country, and buying horses is his business. Farmers received around $4,000 for the car load. In the old days Clarke county furnished the market with more horses than any other in Iowa.

[submitted by S.F.; Feb. 2004]

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