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.

New construction of bear den in Bever Park, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Bever Park was established in 1893 after the death of prominent Cedar Rapids businessman Sampson Bever, whose family owned the wooded land. The Bever Park Zoo, which would become home to lions, bears, alligators, monkeys and other animals, opened in 1901, and trolley service to the park, then two miles outside of the Cedar Rapids city limits, began in 1904.1907 postmark. Number 1955.

School children and school staff standing in front of the school building. 1907 postmark. Number 8485.

In 1870, the Davenport Schuetzengesellschaft (later called the Schuetzen Verein) created this "Schuetzenpark," or shooting park, as a target range for rifle marksmanship. In addition to the shooting and target houses, the park included an inn, dance hall, music pavilion, zoo, bowling alleys, roller coaster, refreshment stands, athletic field, picnic grounds, and other amusements. The popularity of Schuetzen Park began to decline around 1917, when the anti-German hysteria from World War I restricted the activities of German-Americans and led to the prohibition of the use of the German language in public. Many businesses and organizations changed their German names. For a time, Schuetzen Park was renamed Forest Park. The Davenport Schuetzen Verein became known by its English equivalent, the Davenport Shooting Association. The park was dealt another serious blow in 1919 when the "Prohibition Act" outlawed the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages, which had been a major source of revenue for the park. The park was sold in 1923, and it became the site of the Chiropractic Psychopathic Sanitarium. However, today, much of the property again changed hands to the Davenport Good Samaritan Center and is being preserved as a "Wildpark". The only original park building that remains is the 1911 street car waiting station, which was named a local historic landmark in 1998 by the City of Davenport. It is located at 700 Waverly Road, Davenport, Scott County, Iowa. 1907 postmark. Number 2020.

A group of Seton Indians attending a Chautauqua in Charles City. Sender says "This is our director, Nina B. Lamkin of Chicago". 1907 postmark.

Looking at the front entrance of a two-story Gothic stone building completed in 1886. This church was torn down in 1974 due to a sinking foundation. It was located as part of the property where the current courthouse sits. 1907 postmark.

Looking northeast at the Iowa State Capitol building which was completed in 1886 at a cost of $3,296,256, and, and at the time, was the only five-domed capitol in the country. The dome of the capitol is gilded with tissue-paper thin sheets of pure 23-karat gold, with a protective layer sealing the gold from the weather, and the top of its finial peak is 275 feet (84 m) above the ground. From its opening during 1884 until 1924, it was the tallest building in Des Moines, and likely the entire state. It is located at 1007 East Grand Avenue, Des Moines, Polk County, Iowa and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 1907 postmark. Number 1757.

Looking east at a tree-lined, residential dirt street. 1907 postmark.

A crane car clearing wreckage from the July 22, 1907, train wreck near Belle Plaine, Iowa. 1907 postmark.

The two story brick building was opened November 1, 1904. Sign on front of the building says "U.S. Weather Bureau, Department of Agriculture". The discretion as to where the weather stations are to be located is left with the Secretary of Agriculture. Number 10149.

The Des Moines Union station building and depot grounds extended west from Fifth Street to some distance beyond Sixth Avenue. The building was razed no later than the 1960s. 1907 postmark. Number 140.

Outside activities at the sanitorium. Built in 1904, when Florence Brown Sherbon, A. M., M. D., her husband, John Bayard Sherbon, M. D., and her father James Brown, incorporated the Victoria Sanatorium and Mineral Spring. 1907 postmark.

Looking west down Seventh Avenue. 1907 postmark.

Looking northwest at Broad Street from Fourth Avenue with Congregational Church in the foreground. 1907 postmark. Title supplied by cataloger.

Eagle Point Park has 164 acres overlooking the Mississippi River and General Zebulon Pike Lock and Dam (No. 11). 1907 postmark. Number 3.

Looking south on Main Street downtown Aurelia, Iowa. 1907 postmark.

Looking southeast. Goodnow Hall 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. 1907 postmark.

Several wooden buildings in the business district with water tower located at the end of the street. 1907 postmark. Number 8.

Woman holding dog and flag with school colors and Grinnell College logo on top. 1907 postmark. College series, no. 1. Title supplied by cataloger.

Portrait of two women (one woman's name is Alice and other woman's name is Mary) and a girl standing behind a fence and in front of a house. 1907 postmark.

Looking at the first hospital in Monroe County which was formed in 1909 at the corner of South Clinton and Second Avenue East. It was a former boarding house owned by Dr. Robert P. Miller. In later years, Dr. T.E. Gutch operated the facility then known as the Miner’s Hospital. This hospital closed during World War I due to a shortage of nursing staff. In 1946, after some reconstruction, the hospital was re-opened by Dr. R.A. Smith and was known as Smith Hospital. Monroe County Residents gradually grew out of the Smith Hospital. In 1952, a new hospital was built and the Smith Hospital closed in 1957. 1908 postmark.