Historic Iowa Postcards

Grinnell College Libraries' Historic Iowa Postcard Collection. A collection of postcards from 1900 through the middle of the 20th century, covering all parts of Iowa.

Wintery scene of the frozen Iowa River looking at a Lost Pratt through truss bridge in the background. The bridge was replaced in 1977. 1908 postmark.

Advertising card for democratic candidate, Max M. Patton from Laurel, Iowa who is running for the Marshall County auditor seat in 1908. 1908 postmark.

Looking north at a three-story brick and stone building estimated at a cost of $6,000. The architect was Benjamin J. Bartlett of Des Moines and was erected by local businessmen and farmers. The building was originally the home of Dexter Normal College, a teacher's school, and was consolidated with the public school system in 1896. 1908 postmark. Number 1.

Looking northeast from Fourth Avenue. The first Grinnell high school was built in 1904. An addition that expanded the building to include junior high students was completed in 1921. 1908 postmark. Number 61. It now houses the Grinnell Community Center.

Looking up the street. Kingbury's Restaurant and Lunch Room is in the background. 1908 postmark.

Looking northeast at the Fonda High School which was built in 1907. It was destroyed in a fire in 1927, rebuilt in 1928, and razed in 2015. 1908 postmark.

Two story brick building. In 1880 the North school building was put up at a cost of $16,000. William Young of Marshalltown did the brick work and roofing and L. Wallace and Son did the carpenter work. 1908 postmark. Number 4408.

Looking at the front entrance of the second schoolhouse built in 1872. It was located at 117 Driftwood Street, Correctionville, Woodbury County, Iowa. 1908 postmark. Number 63281.

Looking west on the Deer Run Trail in Climbing Hill, Iowa, with the First Baptish Church on the left. The community was named by C. E. Ostrander, the settler and postmaster. 1908 postmark.

In 1873, the Stuart family from Canada and the Higley and especially the Douglas family from Cedar Rapids established an oatmeal mill (initially known as the North Star Mill). The company later adopted the name American Cereal Company and by the 1890s began to produce a product line known as "Quaker Oats". The Cedar Rapids Quaker Oats plant established its own skyline of manufacturing buildings and became one of the largest in the nation. 1908 postmark. Number 22222.

Looking east from Central Park. Home of J.B. Grinnell and his wife Julia. The cellar was a registered stop in the Underground Railroad. A portion of the house was moved to Broad Street south of Third Avenue until the late 1970's. 1908 postmark.

Looking northeast at a 5 story brick and stone building. The Burtis Hotel was built in 1874 next to the Burtis Opera House. The new hotel featured its own train platform as well as telephone, telegraph and an elevator. In 1880 the name of the hotel was changed to the Kimball House and it was advertised as the "largest and best hotel in Iowa." The hotel was transformed into an apartment building and renamed the Perry Apartments. In 1939, the building was repaired from a large fire and renamed the Vale Apartments. The building was torn down in 1993 because it was structurally unsafe. It was located at 210 East Fourth Street, Davenport, Scott County, Iowa. 1908 postmark.

Looking northwest. Blair Hall (right foreground) was constructed in 1882-1886, razed in 1961. Cost was $37,200 excl. grading and landscaping. Originally housed the college chapel, the departments of chemistry, natural science, mathematics, and physics. Goodnow Hall (left background) was constructed in 1885, costing $15,700 excluding telescope ($2,125) and book stacks. Originally served as college library and astronomical observatory. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 1908 postmark.

Looking down the Iowa River near Belle Plaine. 1908 postmark.

Front says: Trains every 60 minutes. In 1910, the Iowa and Illinois Railway secured a valuable freight terminal property in Davenport, Iowa. It included an office building and a warehouse which was occupied originally by the Burlington, Cedar Rapids and Northern Railway, under a right granted to it by the City of Davenport. The property reverted to the city and was offered to the Iowa and Illinois Railway Company. 1908 postmark.

The Kessel Hospital was founded by Dr. George Kessel, Grinnell College graduate, in 1902 and was the first hospital in Northeast Iowa. Dr. Kessel converted the home into a hospital. The Kessel Hospital became St. Joseph's Mercy Hospital in 1910 and was used as a nurses training school, the Howard County Hospital in 1974, and is now under the umbrella of Regional Health Services of Howard County. It is located at 235 Eighth Avenue West, Cresco, Howard County, Iowa. 1908 postmark. Number 463.

Interior view of the lobby at the Montrose Hotel with the reservation desk in the background. The hotel was built in 1906 on the corner of Third Street and Third Avenue and owned by hoteliers Jackson E. Montrose and Charles McHugh. The hotel was taken over by Eugene Eppley in 1917. Grant Wood was noted as painting murals for the hotel's mezzanine. The first two stories of the hotel were 16 feet in height, while the other four stories were 10 feet in height. The Montrose was demolished in 1988. Number 6481.

Looking at a two story wooden building near the railroad tracks with "Lumber, Posts, Tiles, Sash, Doors, Cement, Lime & Shingles" across the top. Two men are standing near the front of the building and a horse and wagon are on the side. A large farmhouse with front porch is on a hill in the background. 1908 postmark.

Looking north at the Opera House Block with the bank building on the right and the opera house on the left with the cupola on top. 1908 postmark.

Looking north on Main Street (now Station Street) business district in Chelsea, Iowa. Huiskamp Shoes sign on side of building. The town of Chelsea was laid out in 1863 by Seneca Breese and J. Hunter within one square mile area about ten miles east of Tama City. 1908 postmark.