Titanic Survivor From Iowa Never Gave Up Hope

“I have not given up hope but what my husband was saved in some way,” Carrie Toogood Chaffee told a Minneapolis newspaper reporter in April 1912. Carrie had grown up in Manchester, Iowa, but moved to North Dakota when she married a well-to-do businessman named Herbert Chaffee. She remained close to her family and friends in Iowa after her marriage and visited often. Iowa History, a weekly column, appears at IowaWatch on Saturdays. Cheryl Mullenbach is the author of non-fiction books for young people.

Iowa’s Champion ‘Tomato Girl’ And The Secrets Of Her Success 100 Years Ago

Parents in Page County, Iowa, in 1915 hoped the actions of a local farm girl would cause similar seeds of thought to “germinate in the fertile minds of our youth.”

Eloise Parsons, 14, a member of the Page County Tomato Club, was honored for her work as a model tomato grower. On a small one-tenth of an acre tract of land near Clarinda, she grew a bumper crop of vegetables in the summer of 1914. After deducting her expenses of $15.61, which included renting the land, applying fertilizers, and her labor at a rate of ten cents per hour, Eloise saw a profit of $115.57. Iowa History, a weekly column, appears at IowaWatch on Saturdays. Cheryl Mullenbach is the author of non-fiction books for young people.

Roosevelt Welcomes Iowan to Rough Riders

“War is a deplorable alternative and we must enter upon it only after the most earnest consideration,” a speaker at Darwin Merritt’s memorial service in Red Oak in 1898 declared. He said newspapermen and congressmen would not do the actual fighting in wartime. “The men who fight the war will be the men who enlist at the sound of the fife and the taps of the drum, and take in their hands the muskets.”

Iowa History, a weekly column, appears at IowaWatch on Saturdays. Cheryl Mullenbach is the author of non-fiction books for young people. Her work has been recognized by International Literacy Association, American Library Association, National Council for Social Studies, and FDR Presidential Library and Museum.

Iowa Gold Seekers Headed For The Dakota Black Hills in 1874. What Did They Find?

For about $100 a man could secure all the necessary articles he needed in Sioux City, Iowa, to outfit himself for a gold digging expedition to the Black Hills in 1874. Items included a rifle, revolver, flour, salt, ammunition, blankets, cooking utensils, a pick, shovel and gold pan. This was valuable information for a group of 26 men and one woman with her 10-year-old boy, who were preparing to make the trek into the Dakotas in search of riches. Charles Collins, editor of the Sioux City Times, was organizing the expedition, along with an experienced frontiersman named Thomas H. Russell. Eph Witcher and John Gordon were leading the group from Sioux City to the Black Hills.