Cities In Iowa: The Hawkeye State
Nestled in the heart of the Midwest, Iowa, the "Hawkeye State," is known for its warm hospitality and strong sense of community. The state's history is deeply rooted in agriculture, reflected in its sprawling cornfields and soybean crops. As the first state to cast votes in the presidential primary election, Iowa holds a prominent place in the nation's political landscape. Beyond its rural allure, Iowa boasts dynamic cities, such as Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, that embody a blend of modern amenities and Midwestern sensibilities. From the iconic covered bridges to the annual spectacle of the Iowa State Fair, the state celebrates its cultural traditions while embracing innovation and progress.
Iowa State Quick Facts
The state nickname of Iowa is the "Hawkeye State", which was most likely inspired by the character "Hawkeye" from James Fenimore Cooper's novel "The Last of the Mohicans" and was later popularized by writer James G. Edwards. It has also been said that the nickname was inspired by the Native American warrior named Black Hawk. Iowa became the 29th state to join the United States on December 28, 1846. The capital city of Iowa is Des Moines, and with a population of 215,408 is is also the largest city in the state. Iowa is the 26th largest state with an land area of 56,273 square miles and is 0.74% water. Iowa is home to more than 100 commercial wineries and 300 vineyards. The red delicious apple was created in Iowa. Actor John Wayne was born in Winterset in 1907, as was television host Johnny Carson, who was born in Corning in 1925. Iowa is known for its historic covered bridges, which are popular tourist attractions. Madison County, made famous by the novel "The Bridges of Madison County," features several of these picturesque structures. The iconic movie "Field of Dreams" was filmed in Dyersville, Iowa. The baseball field from the film remains a tourist attraction, drawing visitors from around the world. Other famous people born in Iowa include Ashton Kutcher, Elijah Wood, Lolo Jones and Kurt Warner.
The Spirited History of Iowa
Iowa's history had a huge impact on America's westward expansion and the spirit of the Midwest that exists today. Prior to European exploration, Iowa was home to various Native American tribes, including the Meskwaki, Sioux and Sauk. In the 17th and 18th centuries, French and Spanish explorers ventured into what is now Iowa, seeking to establish fur trading posts and connect with indigenous communities. After the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, the United States acquired the Iowa region. The first permanent European-American settlement was established at Fort Madison in 1808. In 1846, Iowa gained its statehood. Throughout the 19th century, Iowa's fertile soil and favorable climate made it an ideal location for farming. Settlers quickly developed the land for agriculture, and the state became a leading producer of corn, wheat, soybean and other crops. During the mid-19th century, Iowa played a significant role in the Underground Railroad, a network of secret routes and safe houses used by enslaved African Americans to escape to freedom. Iowa contributed a substantial number of troops to the Union cause in the Civil War. Approximately 76,000 Iowans served in the military, and the state played a vital role in supporting the war effort. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Iowa underwent industrialization and modernization. Railroads began to connect cities and towns and the state grew from there.
Iowa's Rolling Geography
Rolling hills, bedrock, fertile plains and numerous rivers and lakes define Iowa's geography. Iowa is bordered by Minnesota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin. The majority of Iowa consists of fertile farmland, making it one of the most productive agricultural regions in the world. Iowa is crisscrossed by several major rivers, including the Mississippi River, which forms its eastern border and the Missouri River, which defines its western border. The northeastern and eastern regions of Iowa are characterized by gently rolling hills, particularly in the area known as the "Driftless Area," which escaped glaciation during the last ice age. While Iowa is known for its rural character, it is also home to several larger cities and urban centers. Des Moines, the state capital, is the largest city and serves as a major hub for commerce, culture, and government.
Iowa Relocation Info
Iowa does not get nearly enough credit when people talk about the best states in the union to live. With large cities in Iowa like Iowa City, Des Moines and Ames, Iowa has lots cultural history and fun things to do. You will find some of the nicest hotels and restaurants in the entire Midwest in Iowa City, and there are many festivals that come there during the course of the year. If you look at any map of Iowa cities, you'll notice that the state is almost as landlocked as a state on the map can be, but even so, Iowa has plenty to offer its residents.
In terms of quality of life and cost of living, it does not get much better than Iowa. The people there seem to enjoy the things that they do, especially those in agriculture. This makes up a large part of the Iowa job market, so it figures that things have not slowed down much, even with the current economy. Most people in Iowa live in single family homes, and large plots of land are available for only a little bit of money. The one drawback of living in Iowa and relocating there is that you would have to get used to the harshly cold weather. During the winter months, it can be difficult to take.
For the most part, Iowa is a very safe state. Overall crime rates in Iowa are more than 20% lower than the national average. Crime will be higher in larger Iowa cities like Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Davenport; but that generally rings true for any major city.