July 11, 2020
Officers and Consuls in Attendance
President: Mary Preston
Treasurer: Joyce Ausberger
Secretary: Jan Gammon
Benton: Mike Kelly
Marshall: Harlan Quick
Greene: Bob and Joyce Ausberger
Carroll: Barbara Hackfort
Harrison: Kathy Dirks
Pottawattamie: Eddy Hedegaard
Others in Attendance: Garry Hevalow, Brad Boustad, Sandii Huemann-Kelly, Marcia Quick, Janet Hedegaard, Wendi Winkie, Dusti Winkie, Mark Hoffman, Joel Windmiller, Gene Rabel, and Kay Rabel.
Welcome: The meeting was called to order at 9:34 AM. The people on the call introduced themselves and President Mary Preston welcomed all to our first Zoom call.
Secretary’s Report: Jan Gammon had sent out the minutes from the October meeting prior to the call. Joyce moved to approve the minutes. Garry Hevalow seconded. Motion carried.
Treasurer’s Report: Joyce Ausberger We received money from national dues and from the Jeff Benson Endowment. Memberships are down from last year, but 13 did renew. We are offering paying 3 years at a time, so this count doesn’t accurately reflect all current members. Dean Parr has the final membership numbers.
Membership Report: Dean Parr was not on the call, but sent in a report that we have 24 Comp, 79 Iowa, 15 Life, 138 National Members for a total of 256. This is after he removed the Merchant Members and converted them to Iowa members. He then mailed them a $10 renewal and had 3-4 emails asking to be removed from our list. No one renewed. He removed all Iowa members that did not renew in 2019 as well as 2020, so we are down 28 from the previous count (6 Iowa and 22 Merchant Members.)
State Director Report: Dean reports that national conference calls held were nearly all to do with the cancellation of the conference. The planned conferences are in the same order, just pushed out a year. 2021: Joliet, Illinois; 2022: near Sacramento, CA; and 2023: TBD, Nebraska.
The National Headquarters has been repainted and cleaned up. It was to open with limited hours.
Open Office (VP) and Consul (Crawford) Positions: Joyce Ausberger suggested Garry Hevalow be the VP and Mary Preston will take that under advisement. No further discussion.
Lost contact with Pottawattamie Consul: Hedegaard had some issues with their email, but it has been resolved and they continue to be active as Consuls.
Youngville/Benton County: Mike Kelly reported that Youngville had the roof replaced at the end of 2019. Mike found architectural shingles similar to the original. They are almost 3 times heavier, will last a long time, and look great. Original quote was for $9,000, but chimney removed and final cost was near $11,000 all paid for from the treasury. They were hoping to add to the coffers this season, but COVID-19 and road construction impacted them and they did not open, but looking forward to next year. Road has finally opened. Last fall they had a grant to work on the oil room floor. Tom Richards, from Nevada, cut out a section of the concrete floor where it had buckled and he repaired it. He rehung the door the Amish had made many, many years ago so the oil room is ready to house exhibits. They have not decided just how to do this yet. Mike would like to see the garage in the back straightened and used. Youngville Highway History Association is looking for any grants they can get to help with operations. Travel Iowa and Iowa Economic Development Authority were suggested by Mary Preston and Kathy Dirks as places to look for funds.
Montour Gas Station Report: Jan Gammon had a phone call from the Montour City Clerk and the Public Works person who said the City is considering purchasing the gas station from the Kupka family. They would need access inside to test water. Is the ILHA still interested in restoring the building? Jan said,” Yes”, between the ILHA and the Byway we would like to restore the property. Not sure if the sale has happened.
Clinton: Cathie Nichols was not on the call but Joe Goodlove mentioned in his Cedar report that Wapsi Willy (Bill Miller) died and transferred his property to a friend. The property is on the south side of the middle bridge near where the ILHA has discussed putting in a trail, interpretation, etc. Jan Gammon looked on the Clinton County Assessor site and it now belongs to Anthony Oldsen and Scott Paulson. Paulson operates a business “Wapsi Welding and Repair” from the address. The business has a FaceBook page and Paulson posted that his good friend Wapsi Willy passed away on 12/5/2018. The transfer of property was dated 2/20/2019.
Cedar: Joe Goodlove sent in a report that Cedar County is still having community garage sales, with no virus protection.
Linn: Rex Martin sent a message to Mary Preston that he had nothing to report and was traveling today.
Benton: Mike Kelly already gave his report. Mary added that the RFP on the Herring Hotel is due to the City of Belle Plaine by August 5. So far, she doesn’t think anyone has submitted a restoration proposal.
Tama: Allan Richards – no report. Jan Gammon did mention that the City of Tama’s bridge qualified in this year’s DOT infrastructure program. The DOT will pay for 80% of the cost and the City 20%. Funds had already been collected for this project. The engineer that had been on the project left his position and a new engineer has taken over. As far as Jan knows, work has not begun.
May Preston added that King Tower Café is doing some interior work and their outside sign is being refurbished. Jan said she heard the sign was being repainted, but the neon was not restored.
Marshall: Harlan Quick reported that the Rose Festival was cancelled this year, but they are working to include some of their activities with a car show to be held Sept 19-20. Tonight there will be a Cruise and Concert that will take people from State Center to Colo, Zearing, St Anthony, and back to State Center for an 8:00PM Cody Hicks concert in the Rose Garden.
The county fair will be modified. Marshalltown is still recovering from the tornado. The Orpheum Theater will be used for court. State Center Main Street received a Challenge Grant and will continue restoring buildings. Harlan is painting the depot and the one-room schoolhouse is also getting painted. Dr. Kauffman’s Trust gives 5% of its income to help fund development in the State Center. He was an original consul for the city of State Center.
Harlan suggested 4 locations in the State Center for interpretive panels 1. Depot 2. Restored Home Oil Station 3. Former LH tourist park (now a city park across from High School, and 4. Downtown.
Mike Kelly asked about concrete markers in State Center and Harlan said there will be 4 (by schoolhouse, Rose Garden, private residence by the ballfield, and Mr. Hartwig who purchased one and will install outside his business.)
Story: Carroll Stokesbary was not on the call. Jan Gammon said that Nevada is redoing their main street which intersects with the LH. They will be going into the next block, so traffic might be diverted for a block soon. Nilands Café in Colo is open, doing call-ins, limited seating, and encouraging using picnic benches outside. Farmers market is there weekly and occasionally they do car roll-ins. Last one included tractors.
Boone: John Fitzsimmons – no report
Greene: Joyce Ausberger reported that Roger Aegerter, former art teacher and current director of the Green County Historical Society, has painted a to-scale Lincoln Highway on a block-long sidewalk section in Jefferson. Photos should be in the next Forum and we can put in our next newsletter as well.
Grand Junction had visitors from Colorado that were comprised of triplets that will be seniors in high school and their mom. The students had created a skit about the Lincoln Highway and competed locally, regionally, and nationally and won their way to the top. They were very knowledgeable about the Lincoln Highway and had stopped at Preston’s Station where Garry gave them a tour. They were to stop at the Harrison County Welcome Center as well.
The Quirks Cabin area is getting mowed and they have someone living there now. He helps pull weeds at the Grand Junction LH garden.
Bob has also been clearing brush from the McGregor Motel area near the top of Danger Hill. Work will continue this fall. The Greene County Fair ends today. Fair was just 4-H and FFA projects with families attending the judging. Fireworks were done last night.
Carroll: Barb Hackfort reported their county fair was also just 4-H and FFA. The viaduct on west Hwy 30 is being repaired a lane at a time, so traffic isn’t impeded too much. The restaurant, Barratta’s, in the Santa Maria Winery building has moved out and into the Carrollton Inn that had closed. Winery will continue in the building on the Lincoln Highway.
Crawford: no report
Harrison: Kathy Dirks said the Welcome Center is hosting farmer’s markets on Thursdays. Their county fair was also only 4-H and FFA judging. Applefest has been cancelled. Wisecup Farms is closed this year. DeSoto Bend Visitor Center has been closed. Lavender Farm is open 3 days a week.
The Welcome Center just opened this past Monday 10-4, so they can spend 1-1 ½ hours cleaning. They were tight on space to keep workers 6 ft. apart, so the auditorium has been converted to office space. They’ve had visitors from 13 states so far this week, but majority from Iowa and Nebraska. The LH interpretive panel is being redone and is being reviewed for edits. Some road resurfacing near Logan is being done. Missouri Valley is working on their 5-year plan. Talking about the road change to go around town, the Army Corp of Engineers and DOT are working with the City as it will be 14 ft. higher to deal with flooding and will offer limited entrance and exit points.
Pottawattamie: Eddy Hedegaard said that Don Willert, Crescent, passed away. Both he and wife, Millie, are both gone now. Don was an original LH Consul for Pottawattamie County. He had a shop along the LH with a great collection of autos and memorabilia. He had an auction which Eddie went to, but he did not see the LH concrete marker there for sale. Eddie will see if it is still installed next time he goes through that area.
Eddy hopes that we can do a driving tour sometime in the future and he’d like to help organize that.
Wapsi Bridge Trail Report: Cathie (done previously)
Preston Station Update: Mary and Garry met with the State of Iowa regarding the National Register of Historic Places application that Jennifer Price prepared. The Benton County Historical Preservation Commission reviewed the application via a Zoom call earlier and passed it along to the state. The state is now passing to the National review team.
As with most attractions, the station has not been open. There is no good way to social distance inside, but tours are given outside and a number of people have stopped.
Tama Bridge Update: Jan/Alan (done previously)
Reed-Niland Update: (done previously)
Quirks Cabins: Bob/Joyce (done previously)
Prairie Rivers of Iowa – CMP: Jan Gammon reported that the Iowa section of the Lincoln Highway applied to be a National Scenic Byway. Legislation passed allowing for new nominations this year. Nebraska applied and Ohio may have applied as well. Illinois is the only section that is currently a National Scenic Byway. Announcements to be made this fall. Bob and Joyce were disappointed that the Greene County section of the Lincoln Highway that is on the National Register of Historic Places was not one of the 8 locations featured in the application (1. Sawmill Museum/Lyons-Fulton Bridge and Mississippi River 2. Youngville 3. Preston’s Station 4. Tama LH Bridge 5. Reed-Niland Corner 6. Depot in Carroll 7. Woodbine brick LH section and 8. Harrison County Historical Village and Welcome Center). Jan said it was hard to find a good mix of attractions, with hours of operation, with latitude and longitude points, and either docents or interpretation for the visitor.
A video project about breweries, wineries, and distilleries with the University of Iowa is underway. A grad student will work on 2 two-minute videos, one for the Clinton area and one for the Cedar Rapids area.
An application to be an American Society of Civil Engineers Historic Landmark was submitted to the Iowa chapter 2 years ago and edits made. They have had the re-write for about a year. The application is being finalized and it will be submitted soon. The national review team will take about a year to review.
The Iowa Byways are partnering with Travel Iowa and a company called Bandwango on a passport-type program. They are currently doing a similar program with Iowa State Parks. An app would be downloaded on your phone and GPS will know if you are within the area when you register you are at a preferred location. After you get “x” number of locations you will get a small prize. Discussions are on-going as to how to do a larger prize- all Byways together or separately. Program should roll out in September.
Big news is that after receiving many “no’s” from County Community Foundation grants for interpretive panels, the Byway received a $10,000 grant from the Union Pacific (half of what was requested). Locations are: Woodbine (brick street), Yellow Smoke Park (bowstring bridge), Arcadia (M and M Divide), Eureka Bridge Access (Eureka Bridge), Marshalltown (Courthouse), Preston’s (George and family), and the Lyons District of Clinton. All will be the 2’ x 3’ panels on a weathered steel base except for Clinton’s will be four 3’ x 3’ panels (2 back to back) on wood supports. Local groups are asked to contribute $1,000 per panel. Woodbine has theirs in hand and as these minutes are being typed, the Byway learned that Preston’s/Belle Plaine does as well. We are waiting to hear on two additional grants yet for this project.
Prairie Rivers of Iowa: Jan Gammon asks that you keep sending in information for the LHA website, Face Book page, and newsletter.
Kathy Dirks mentioned that Bandwango and Travel Iowa are also doing a gift card and entrance tickets sales program called “Dream Now, Visit Later.” The Welcome Center is doing gift cards in their shop, since there is no entrance fee. The State of Iowa is picking up all the fees for this program, so it is free for any attraction to participate (as long as they are registered on the Travel Iowa website). Jan or Kathy can help walk you through how to get set up on the website.
Joyce said Jefferson is looking to repaint a LH mural on the backside of the J.C. Penney store. Does anyone have a photo of the mural in Canton, OH? She likes the 3D look of that one.
Barbara Hackfort confirmed that J.C. Penney is closing in downtown Carroll. It was an anchor store for many years and will be missed.
Mary Preston has joined the new LHA Marketing committee and will take any suggestions to that group.
Dusti and Wendi Winkie said the Winkie Foundation has had to cancel many of their events, but are looking forward to next year.
Joyce Ausberger said the City of Grand Junction was excited to get a letter from the Byway about the application for National Scenic Byway designation. Jan had sent a letter to all 43 communities.
Mark Hoffman (CA LHA) said he was very interested how the people on the call represented attractions and locations where the California group is just fans of the Lincoln Highway. He runs a travel business and sees people traveling, but staying closer to home on day trips.
Joel Windmiller (CA LHA) said California has 5 alignments, two going over the Sierra Nevadas. They are having a Zoom call today at 1:00 Pacific Time
Jan had a note from Gene Rabel, LHA member from Lindstrom, MN, who is taking photos of all the concrete markers. He has sent the Iowa photos to Lyell Henry to share with Van Becker, our Iowa expert on concrete markers. Gene is working on all the states and has taken 375 photos across the nation. He has sent out all except CA and NV, but hopes to complete it on his next trip on the LH. (After this call it was learned that Gene and wife, Kay, were listening in on the call but unable to “chime” in.)
Harlan Quick added that Watson’s Museum is open by appointment only this summer.
Adjournment: Jan Gammon made a motion to adjourn and Garry Hevalow seconded. Motion carried and Mary Preston adjourned the meeting at 11:04 AM.
October 10, 2020- Carroll or via ZOOM
January 9, 2021- Location TBD or via ZOOM