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Northeastern Iowa


Fri, Jan 26th, 2001
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Northeast Iowa shares much of the same topography of Historic Bluff Country. Limestone bluffs, meandering rivers, springs, and rolling hills in the east and softly rolling hills with rich prairie soil in the west. Minnesota and Iowa also share the same ethnic flavor, having been settled early by the Scandinavians, English, Irish and Germans.

Founded in 1851, Burr Oak was a major crossroads for prairie schooners, stagecoaches and travelers on their way to settle the new territory of Minnesota. Located just south of the Minnesota border on Highway 52, Burr Oak is the home of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum.

South of Burr Oak on Highway 52, Decorah, the county seat of Winnishiek County, Iowa, sits on the Upper Iowa river. Decorah is the home of Luther College and the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum.

The towns of Lime Springs and Chester are located in Howard County, Iowa. Both communities are accessible from Highway 63.

Hayden Prairie, a 240 acre reserve, is one of Iowa's best prairie remnants. It is located three miles south of Chester and four miles west of Lime Springs.

Cresco, IA, is an old, picturesque, northeast Iowa town known for, among other things, being the home of Norman Borlaug, the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize winner. It was also the home of the world's first flight attendant, Ellen Church. One cannot overlook the fact that Cresco is also home of five admirals and the Iowa Wrestling Hall of Fame. The Praire Farmer Recreational Trail starts in Cresco and work will be completed soon on a trail to Vernon Springs and Prairie's Edge Nature Center. The Nature Center and park are located two miles south of Cresco on the Turkey River.

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