On May 4-5-6, 1989, Iowa City celebrated its 150th birthday. As we’ve reported in earlier blog posts, Iowa City began on May 4, 1839 when Chauncey Swan drove a stake into the ground – marking the location of Iowa’s new capitol building. Read more here.
Here’s the Schedule of Events for the big Sesquicentennial Celebration.
Click here to read more about Herb Gartzke – keeper of the City Hall bell that helped celebrate Iowa City’s 150th anniversary in 1989.
In celebration of this special sesquicentennial event, The Iowa City Press Citizen published a special Sesquicentennial edition on Thursday, May 4th, 1989, which included a multiple-page overview of Iowa City’s rich heritage. Below are a handful of the many highlights within that special edition, which was divided into three 50-year sections (1839-1889), (1889-1939), and (1939-1989)…
Of course, scattered throughout this 27-page edition were countless ads from local businesses and organizations, such as these…
Mercy Hospital and John’s Grocery both have long histories in Iowa City.
In 1989, two new books on Iowa City were released, Gerald Mansheim’s Iowa City-An Illustrated History, and Irving Weber’s Iowa City-Volume 5.
All in all, the May 1989 Sesquicentennial Celebration in Iowa City was a pretty big deal.
Another series of events was held in Iowa City for the 175th Anniversary in 2014. Though not as massive as the Centennial (1939) or Sesquicentennial (1989) Celebrations, a number of events were planned. You can read more about that 2014 celebration by linking to these two Iowa City Press Citizen articles…
Map: Iowa City looking dandy at 175 years of age, Mitchell Schmidt, Iowa City Press-Citizen, July 9, 2014
175 years – Iowa City to mark 175 years with 3-day celebration, Andy Davis, Iowa City Press Citizen, December 3, 2014
Click here to read about the Press-Citizen’s celebration of Iowa City’s Centennial in 1939.
Kudos to the amazing resources below for the many quotes, photographs, etc. used on this page.
Iowa City Sesquicentennial Parade -1989, Iowa City Public Library Channel
Our One Hundred Fiftieth Anniversary, Iowa City Press Citizen, May 4, 1989, pp 1, 37-64
Click here to go on to the next section…
Click here for a complete INDEX of Our Iowa Heritage stories…