Interesting facts about Iowa

iowa flag

Iowa is a U.S. state located in the midwestern United States.

It is bordered by Wisconsin to the northeast, Illinois to the east, Missouri to the south, Nebraska to the west, South Dakota to the northwest, and Minnesota to the north.

As of April 2018, the population of Indiana was estimated to be 3,160,553. It is the 30th most populous state in the United States.

Indiana is the 26th largest state in the United States in terms of total area with 145,746 square kilometers (145,746 square miles).

Des Moines is the capital and most populous city of Iowa. It is on and named after the Des Moines River, which likely was adapted from the French colonial name, Rivière des Moines, meaning “River of the Monks.”

des moines

Iowa is bordered by the Mississippi River on the east; the Missouri River and the Big Sioux River on the west.

Most of Iowa’s landscape is gently rolling hills or flat plains. The state’s elevation generally increases from east-southeast to west-northwest.

The state’s lowest elevation point at 146 meters (480 feet) above sea level is in Lee County.

Hawkeye Point is the highest natural point in Iowa at 510 meters (1,670 feet) above sea level.

hawkeye point

Iowa’s natural vegetation is tall grass prairie and savanna in upland areas, with dense forest and wetlands in flood plains and protected river valleys, and pothole wetlands in northern prairie areas.

Iowa has 2 national park and 63 state parks.

Maquoketa Caves State Park is a state park located in Iowa. The park contains more caves than any other state park in Iowa. In 1991 45 hectares (111 acres) on the east side of the park was listed as a historic district on the National Register of Historic Places.

maquoketa caves state park

The Field of Dreams is a baseball field and pop-culture tourist attraction built originally for the movie of the same name. The studio built the baseball diamond on two farms, a few miles outside Dyersville. When production completed, the baseball diamond created for the movie was left behind. Most of the baseball field, including the diamond and the adjacent house, was on one farm owned by the Lansing family, but the left and center field were on an adjacent property owned by the Ameskamp family. The field was built on the two properties because the producers wanted the field in a location where sunset shots would be uninhibited.

the field of dreams

The bridges of Madison County is a scenic site which inspired countless photographs, numerous visits, and even a best-selling novel turned movie. Before The Bridges of Madison County became a blockbuster, the bridges were simply a part of life for people living in this area in the late 19th century. Today, six of the original nineteen covered bridges that once stood here remain, five of which are on the National Historic Register and all of which attract national attention throughout the year.

bridges of madison county

The Iowa State Capitol, seat of the Iowa General Assembly, is located in Iowa’s capital city, Des Moines. The building was constructed between 1871 and 1886, and is the only five-domed capitol in the country. Located at East 9th Street and Grand Avenue, the Capitol is set atop a hill and offers a panoramic view of the city’s downtown and the West Capitol Terrace. Various monuments and memorials are to its sides and front, including the Soldiers and Sailors’ Monument and the Lincoln and Tad statue.

iowa state capitol

The Shrine of the Grotto of the Redemption is a religious shrine located in West Bend, Iowa, in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sioux City. A conglomeration of nine grottos depicting scenes in the life of Jesus, the Grotto contains a large collection of minerals and petrifications and is believed to be the largest grotto in the world. t is also “considered to be the world’s most complete man-made collection of minerals, fossils, shells, and petrifications in one place.”

shrine of the grotto

When the American Indians first arrived in what is now Iowa more than 13,000 years ago they were hunters and gatherers living in a Pleistocene glacial landscape.

By the time European explorers and traders visited Iowa, American Indians were largely settled farmers with complex economic, social, and political systems.

The written history of Iowa begins with the proto-historic accounts of Native Americans by explorers such as Marquette and Joliet in the 1680s.

Iowa was admitted to the union as the 29th state on Dec. 28, 1846.

iowa flag map

Iowa derives its name from the Ioway people, one of the many Native American tribes that occupied the state at the time of European exploration.

The states’ official nickname is the Hawkeye State, a tribute to Chief Black Hawk, an Indian warrior and leader of the Sauk Indians.

The vertical tricolor of blue, white, and red, reflects Iowa’s heritage as part of the French Louisiana Territory.

Iowa has been listed as one of the safest states in which to live.

Strawberry Point is home to the world’s largest strawberry.

Crystal Lake is home to a statue of the world’s largest bullhead fish.

Born Marion Robert Morrison in Winterset, John Wayne was the son of a pharmacist and grew up to become one of Hollywood’s most popular movie stars.

Iowa is the only state name that starts with two vowels.

Iowa State University is the oldest land grant college in the U.S.A.

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