Recent Stories

Early Twentieth Century Iowa Librarian Moonlights as Journalist

The oldest blacksmith shop in Nashua

The largest private collection of geological specimens in America

An Iowa native who photographed glamorous stars

A Memorial Day parade in New York City

All topics of articles written by Belle Caldwell, Charles City librarian and part-time features writer. Earning a degree in library science from the University of Illinois in 1908, Caldwell, a native of Nashua, began an impressive career as a public librarian. Her feature articles carried in the Des Moines Register, Marble Rock Journal, Nashua Reporter and a national magazine, Musical America, brought Caldwell attention outside the library. Iowa History, a weekly column, appears at IowaWatch on Saturdays. Cheryl Mullenbach is the author of non-fiction books for young people.

Thank You For Supporting Our ‘Fringe’ Storytelling Event

Thank you to those who supported and came to our live storytelling event, “Fringe: True Stories From Outsiders,” in Iowa City on Thursday, March 29. An audience of about 65 people heard Daniel Tardy, Veronica Hamly, Ryan Hall, John Paul Derryberry and Miriam Alarcon Avila tell stories about ways Iowans feel like outsiders

Confederate States President’s Photo Album Ends Up in Iowa

Joseph Riley from Erie County, N.Y., was in a train station in New Jersey in 1873 when he overheard a conversation between two men sitting on a bench across from him. They were reminiscing about their experiences in the Civil War. One of the men had fought with the Union and said he had been stationed at Fortress Monroe during the final days of the war and that he had guarded the captured president of the Confederate States, Jefferson Davis. He said he had in his possession a family photo album that belonged to Davis. He guessed that Davis would be willing to pay dearly for the stolen piece of family history.