Iowa Celebrates: The 1950’s. Yup, it’s me, your humble guide, taking a brief look at my first decade on planet earth. Nothing earth-shattering here, but a fun trip back to the days of black-n-white television and Leave It To Beaver.
Mapping Out My Iowa – 1951. This “official” State of Iowa Highway Map takes us back to 1951 – no interstates – no rest stops – no cruise control. Come drive across the Hawkeye State with this roadmap!
Growing Up In Mt. Pleasant – Old Threshers. Agriculture and Iowa go hand-in-hand. Look back with me at the by-gone days of steam-operated threshing machines, as celebrated annually in my home town of Mt. Pleasant: The Midwest Old Settlers & Threshers Reunion.
The Iowa Award – 1951 To Today. As a result of the 1946 Iowa Centennial Celebration, a new award – called The Iowa Award – was developed. The plan was to celebrate every five years or so by honoring one significant Iowan, giving them this award – our state’s highest honor. President Herbert Hoover won the first award (1951) and his friend, Ding Darling, won the second (1955).
The 1950’s – Hooray For Evy’s Hawkeyes. In 1952, Iowa football had only had three winning seasons in the previous 16 years – not winning an outright Big Ten Conference championship for three decades. But then a young football coach named Forest Evashevski came to Iowa City, and with his creative offense he called the Winged T, made the Iowa Hawkeyes into a national powerhouse. As the Evy era came to an end, sports historian Dick Lamb put together an entertaining collection of Hawkeye football highlights on a long-playing (LP) record called Hooray For The Hawkeyes. Come relive the big moments in Iowa football as they were broadcast.
The Big Three Radio Voices Of The Iowa Hawkeyes. In the days before multiple television networks, the only way to keep up with the Hawkeyes was to either 1) be at the game in Iowa City or 2) listen to the game on radio. From the late-1940’s well into the 1990’s, there were three major sportscasters who became the Voice of the Hawkeyes. Come hear the stories of Jim Zabel, Bob Brooks, and Ron Gonder – three giant names in Iowa Hawkeye radio.
Iowa’s Own Rocket Man – Dr. James Van Allen. After years of conducting high-altitude research using hot air balloons, the advent of rocket science provides scientists with a whole new way of reaching to the stars. By 1958, the space race is on and Dr. Van Allen has SUI right in the middle of the fray. As a result, the Explorer space program makes landmark discoveries that impact space travel even to today.
A Penny From Heaven – Rev. Fred L. Penny. In 1958, Rev. Fred Penny and his family came to Iowa City to take over the struggling Bethel AME Church. The church was formed in 1868, but at age 90, had fallen into deep debt and disrepair. Over the next 36 years, Rev. Penny not only turned the church around, but became a true friend to the entire community with his caring hands, his friendly smile, and determined effort to help anyone in need.
The Day MLK Came To Iowa City. On Wednesday, November 11, 1959, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke to a standing-room-only crowd gathered in the SUI Memorial Union Ballroom. Dr. King warned his audience to not fall into complacency on the never-ending march toward social justice. Come re-visit this special day in Iowa City with the help of The Daily Iowan.