Under U.S. law, when a new Territory was established in the west, that territorial government was allowed to choose a full section of land – one square mile or 640 acres – to establish its capital. So in May 1839 – when Chauncey Swan and his companions staked out an uncharted piece of wilderness located on the Iowa River – legally called Section 10 – Township 79 North, Range 6 – West 5th Principal Meridian in Johnson County – the next move was to employ Col. Thomas Cox and Gen. John Frierson as surveyors, and L. Judson as the draftsman to prosecute the work. By July 4, 1839, L. Judson presented his final product – the very first map of Iowa City – one square mile with 100 surveyed blocks in the center. Each of those city blocks measured approximately 2.35 acres each (320 ft x 320 ft) – and each of the surveyed blocks was sectioned into eight lots measuring 80 x 140 feet. Welcome to Iowa City!
CHECK OUT THE COMPLETE BLOG SERIES – Iowa City’s Top 50 Influencers – Part I
Back in 1979 – The Iowa City Press Citizen ran a special seven-page section called Chronology 1841/1979 and it featured Iowa City’s famed historian – Irving Weber – and his look at 25 People Who Left Their Stamp On Iowa City. So, here we are – forty-four years later – and now, I’m offering these two posts – dedicated to those who have greatly influenced our city over the first 100 years or so. This page features the First 25, and as you can see, each of the 25 names has a brief overview with a link(s) to read more, if you like. Enjoy!
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