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.

The Iowa River lattice through truss bridge was located just south of Belle Plaine, Iowa. Number E9363.

Looking northeast. Mears Cottage was constructed in 1888, costing $14,719. Originally served as a ladies dormitory. Number 1225.

The Cedar Rapids Public Library was built in 1905 with a gift of $75,000 from Andrew Carnegie. Listed in the National Register of Historical Places. 1905 postmark.

Built in 1891 with a wooden deck, the Lyons Bridge spanned the Mississippi from Clinton (then Lyons), Iowa to Fulton, Illinois. It was replaced in 1933 with a metal grate (Lincoln Highway Bridge).

Looking south on Main Street in Baxter. Horse and buggy in the street.

Looking southwest on Main street at downtown Allison which includes Stark & Isaacson, Grocers, the Farmers Savings Bank, a pool room and a restaurant. Number 19. Title supplied by cataloger.

Looking west from the Main Street business district in Cherokee, Iowa. Sign with Gust Hokanson, Merchant Tailor, on the left.

Looking at the two-story new Presbyterian Church with bell tower in Brighton. It was built between 1900-1909.

Normal College was originally founded as a private school called the Hazel Dell Academy by Professor Darius Thomas in 1856. In 1893, the school was sold to Professor G.W. Wormley who moved it to a new location and named it the Newton Normal College. Business and teaching classes were taught there until its closing in 1906.

The first skyscraper in Iowa stood was on Locust Street reported at a height of 197 feet and heralded as "the tallest office building between Chicago and San Francisco" when it opened in 1896. It included a distinctive five-story observation tower and provided electricity and gas lighting to all tenants. The building was eventually demolished in1937, and this location is now occupied by Capital Square Mall. 1905 postmark. Number 105.

Looking inside at the front office to Herring Cottage showing a table with a fan plugged into the ceiling light, front desk, and a piano in the parlor. The Herring Cottage, owned and operated by William P. Herring, ran a small auto bus from the hotel to the railroad depot to pick up guests and deliver them back to the train. The hotel was originally built in Colonial Revival style in 1900, designed by Cedar Rapids architect, Charles A. Dieman, and contracted by James Park of Belle Plaine. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Lutheran Children's Home was established by Norwegian Lutherans in 1890. The farm consisted of 617 acres of land. The home was closed in 1945 and the children's home was moved to Ames, Iowa.

Raphael Tuck & Sons' Post Card Series (Clinton, Iowa)
Scenic view of the Mississippi River. Clinton is on the western shore of the Mississippi River and is the easternmost city in Iowa. The Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge pass through Clinton along the river. Series 2155.

Looking at front entrance of two-story brick church building from the street.

School children & school staff standing in front of a two-story wooden school house with bell tower. 1905 postmark.

Looking at the entrance to a three-story brick and stone building built in 1882. Number 71.

Italianate Victorian style brick home with cupola. Owner's initials of G.G.E. on verso.

Two story brick building with a tower. Sacred Heart Academy was a private Catholic school which opened in 1877, staffed by two Presentation sisters and two laywomen.

A peaceful day on the Skunk River near Colfax, Iowa. The Skunk River in Iowa is about 265 miles long and flows parallel to the Iowa River and the Des Moines River. Number 9477.

Looking north on Court Avenue with the Taylor County Courthouse in the background. The building on corner right says F.E. Walker at top. It was erected in 1879 costing approximately $12,000. Reportedly, the original owner of the building was James M. Thompson housing the James Thompson Mercantile Co. (printed on side of building) until 1918. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places under Bedford Commercial Historic District.