That Iowa Mansion You Thought You Owned in 1900? It Was Just A Mistake

Bert M. Bills, a Vinton jeweler, and his young wife got a very nice Christmas present in 1900. Bills had purchased a raffle ticket for a dollar and was rewarded with a luxurious mansion in Sioux City. 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. Visit her website at: www.cherylmullenbachink.com

Millionaire John Peirce was raffling off his palatial mansion at 29th and Jackson Streets in Sioux City.

The Perils And Excitement Of An Iowan’s Floating Marine Biological Laboratory Of 1893

At Bahia Honda the mosquitoes were so thick no one slept for two nights. And, although the insects were annoying, the group of Iowans from a “floating marine biological laboratory” were in the midst of an experiment that would produce a trove of valuable information. It was the spring of 1893. Charles C. Nutting, a State University of Iowa (SUI) zoology professor, led a team from Iowa to Cuba and the Bahamas traveling on a floating laboratory. The group consisted of teachers and students from SUI and other colleges, as well as a doctor, attorney and journalist.

How One Egg Sparked A Romance In Iowa 117 Years Ago

“Lizzie Gilday, Fort Dodge, Ia. May this reach my true love.” The message was written on an egg that Charles Percy H. Smith held in his hands in his office in Guines, Cuba, in 1900. It came to him in an unusual way, and his curiosity led him to a woman who might have been his true love. Iowa History, a weekly column, appears at IowaWatch on Saturdays. Cheryl Mullenbach is a former history teacher, newspaper editor, and public television project manager.