Welcome and Introductions:
The meeting was called to order at 9:36 by Mary Preston, President. Those in attendance:
President- Mary Preston
Secretary- Jan Gammon
Treasurer: Joyce Ausberger
State Director: Dean Parr
Benton County Consul: Mike Kelly
Linn County: Rex Martin
Greene County Consul: Joyce Ausberger
Carroll County Consul: Barbara Hackfort
Others: Bob Ausberger, Garry Hevalow, Jennifer Morrison, Shellie Orngard and Brad Boustad.
Secretary’s Report: The minutes were sent out after the last meeting and are included in today’s packet. Joyce Ausberger motioned to approve the October 8, 2022, minutes and Garry Hevalow seconded. Motion carried.
Treasurer’s Report: Joyce Ausberger reported there is $1,040.34 in checking and $4,757.36 in savings.
End of Year Report:
Membership $630.00 Newsletter $ 754.02
% Natl memberships $1,588.00 PRI $3,233.50
Heartland $1,000.00 Travel Display $ 300.00
Jeff Benson Endow $1,245.72 Map Pack $4,699.39
Donations $3,250.00 Reimbursements $ 145.00
Total $7,910.72 Total $9,131.91
Membership Report: Dean Parr reported eight “Iowa Only” have transitioned to “National” and ten of the 45 “Iowa Only” are behind on dues. They will be dropped soon if not renewed. National – 109, Iowa – 45, Lifetime – 15, Complimentary – 24, for a total of 193. Dean just sent out 27 renewal notices.
Director’s Report: National LHA is still looking someone to replace John Jackson, treasurer.
Old Business: Clinton County Consul position is still open. It appears Crawford and Pottawattamie are open as well due to nonpayment of dues or inactivity with ILHA.
Tama Bridge: Shellie Orngard reported the DOT had several bids to review and they may have selected a contractor to do the project.
Clinton Bridge: Will begin work on restoration soon and will apply for National Register of Historic Places listing.
Clinton: No report.
Cedar: Joe Goodlove emailed in and said all is quiet in his county.
Linn County: Rex Martin has nothing to report but does have a question about the LHNHB Traveling Display. It is to be at the History Center (by the Fire Station) Jan/Feb/Mar of this year. Has it made it there yet? Shellie Orngard said Jonathon has been out sick and someone from the office may take it there this coming week. Rex is concerned that only Center members or those paying an entrance fee will see the display. He’d like it to go to the public library in Marion after that. He will check with the library and get permission and Shellie will relay the message to Jonathon. Shellie also said Hank Zaletel is working on a presentation about the Lincoln Highway with a focus on Story County.
Benton: Mike Kelly reported the roof at Youngville has been repaired and looks good, making other features look bad. He is working on a local grant for $10,000 due in March for tuckpointing and painting of the café. He is working on getting information and pieces together to apply for larger grants for the property. No open date has been set, but he believes sometime in May.
Mike has been working on a video project for both the Lincoln Highway and Jefferson Highway. He is seeking old videos anyone might have that he can convert to new technology. Mary Helen said the ILHA will help him promote the project through the newsletter and social media. He knows Woodbine and Belle Plaine have old videos.
Mary Helen Preston said Preston Station Historic District is closed for the season, but they still have people stop by and peer into the station.
Tama: Allan Richards is not on the call today. Bob Ausberger reported that 8 local men and he cleaned up the gas station in Montour. They took off the lean-to. The group is hoping to have it open to the public in time for Montour’s sesquicentennial this fall. They have been in contact with the guy in Toledo that has a Phillips 66 sign and gas pump. The group of men working on this included 2 carpenters, 1 farmer (and Bob), and one that previously built bridges. Bob and Joyce are pleased with the community support this project is getting.
Marshall County: No report from Harlan Quick.
Story: Jan Gammon said the gas station at Reed/Niland in Colo had an open house and an article/pictures of the event were in the newsletter. Another open house will be held January 28 and 29th by the Colo Historical Association. The café and motel, being run by Kelsey, is doing great business and is now open 6 days a week, closed on Mondays. Shellie Orngard heard Kelsey’s other café in Baxter has closed.
Jan Gammon said the Lincoln Highway between Ames and Nevada is closed again due to the City of Ames putting in water lines. It had been closed, reopened, and is now closed again for the winter.
Boone: No report
Greene: Bob Ausberger said he and Joyce sold the Quirks Cabin property to a guy moving his electric boat business there. Also on the property is an antique dealer who is gearing up to be open in the spring. Bob and Joyce bought the property to stop the bulldozer and are glad these two businesses will continue to improve the property.
The museum in Grand Junction will spread into the north room. Bob and Joyce have a neighbor that will help with the décor. They would like to have videos play along one wall on a continuous loop.
Bob and friends have been working on the motel west of Jefferson (by Danger Hill). Things are on hold until spring. One of the finds on the property were 8 heavy glass bottles. Researchers say these are wine bottles from Germany and can go for $20 each. Joyce thinks they will just have them on display for a bit and not sell them.
Dale Higgins is in Arizona. Bob Whitlach would like to host an ILHA meeting sometime in Lowden.
Bob Ausberger has an idea for fundraising. He thinks we should set a goal of $500 from each community on the route (43 of them). We could ask the City Councils for $250 and the other $250 from local residents. Mary Helen will send something out on this, and Shellie Orngard said she would help with putting together a brochure or packet of info to be sent to each City Council. Bob said cities usually put budgets together in January and finalize them in February, then submit to the state by March.
Carroll: Barbara Hackfort said the trash can has been placed at the M and M Divide. She stopped by to put the lid back on and said people are using the can. She says many people use the area for as a park and ride.
Crawford: No report.
Harrison: Kathy Dirks is unable to be on the call as she is preparing for a 15-day Panama Canal Cruise. She did attend the Lincoln Highway presentation by Darcy Maulsby in Woodbine. It was very well-attended and her Lincoln Highway book along with a few others is being sold in the Welcome Center gift shop. The next time you go thru Dunlap, they have been working on murals and one business commissioned a large Lincoln Highway mural that can be seen as you drive thru town. Learn more at:
Pottawattamie: No report.
Jennifer Morrison report: Jennifer has been working on mapping changes for every county and was able to download blue books for some information. She would like to go to Ann Arbor to continue researching. It was suggested she contact Russell Rein, LHA Field Secretary, prior to going there as the library has moved the LHA collections. Jennifer would like a list of concrete markers. Joyce Ausberger has a booklet with a list. Jennifer would also like to have the LHNHB Traveling Display in Traer sometime this fall for their sesquicentennial. Cece Otto and her “American Songline” production is doing an online event Jan 15th featuring music, history, and recipes. Culinary historian Melissa Vickers will join her. Cece has been at several LHA Conferences and is a supporter of the Lincoln Highway.
Prairie Rivers of Iowa Report: Shellie Orngard reported for Jonathon Sherwood, who is out ill. Jonathon did complete a sign inventory for the entire length of the byway. In the process he took picture and video of his travels. It was put together and shared on Facebook and in YouTube.
Shellie is working on a project to research the physical status of the National Register of Historic Places within the Byway corridor (5 miles on either side of the route). She sent a mailing out to the 220 individual listings and will then send a mailing out to the historic districts. Shellie asked the status of the Herring Hotel in Belle Plaine and Mary Helen Preston said it has not been mentioned lately at city council meetings and it is still standing.
New Business: Mike Kelly said a Lincoln Highway Marker that had been in Vinton is now gone after the lady who owned the property passed away. He will check around to see what happened to it. Mary Helen asked him to let Rex Martin know as he is keeping a current list.
Rex Martin nominated Brad Boustad to be the national Treasurer. He declined the position.
Joyce Ausberger said she and Bob are attending the national LHA Conference in Folsom, California from June 6-12. They will have room in the back seat for 2 if anyone wants to ride along. Jennifer Morrison will be attending but flying.
Next Meeting: April 8 at 9:30 AM. Bob Ausberger will check with Keith Whitlatch about holding the meeting in Lowden.
Adjournment: Garry Hevalow moved, Dean Parr seconded, and Mary Preston adjourned the meeting at 10:48 AM.
Jan Gammon, ILHA Secretary