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Silos & Smokestacks Awards Grants to Preserve America’s Agricultural Story

Northeast Iowa–Silos & Smokestacks National Heritage Area (SSNHA) has awarded
$59,147 to 12 Northeast Iowa sites, communities and organizations to help them tell
their own unique part of the American agricultural story. We are pleased to announce
the following recipients for the 2012 General & Interpretive Planning Grants:

Bellevue Area Chamber of Commerce, Bellevue, $1,162
Through development of an agricultural heritage tour, the chamber will tell the
story of the rich heritage of the St. Donatus-Bellevue area, including the history
and evolution of local farming and farm families.

Grout Museum District, Waterloo, $10,000
The museum will begin the next phase of its “Sharing the Farm Story” project,
documenting the oral video histories of Iowa farmers.

Iowa Valley Resources, Conservation and Development Council – Iowa
Valley Scenic Byway, Amana, $2,000
An interpretive signage program be developed to further share the story of the
Amana Colonies.

Jasper County Historical Society, Newton, $9,815
Through indoor and outdoor exhibits, the history of wind energy in Jasper County
will be interpreted.

Johnson County Board of Supervisors, Lisbon, $4,920
The history of the Sutliff Bridge and surrounding area, including the Cedar River
and native people, will be told through interpretive signage.

Kansas Public Telecommunications Service, Inc., $8,150
The past and present of Iowa’s portion of America’s second longest
transcontinental highway, U.S. Route 6, will be explored through development of
a documentary film titled “River to River: Iowa’s Forgotten Highway 6.”

Northeast Iowa Community College, Peosta, $1,900
Interpretive signs will be developed to introduce and designate four distinct
habitats within the 28-acre Outdoor Learning Lab.

Reiman Gardens-Iowa State University, Ames, $10,000
An interpretive exhibit will be designed to enhance the agricultural theme and
hands-on interaction in the Children’s Garden.

Four Mounds Foundation, Dubuque, $2,200
A consultant will be hired to help develop an educational and interpretive plan
with an exhibit concept design for the historic barn, as it relates to the farm
campus and gentleman’s farm, as well as a designer for preliminary interpretive
sign and exhibit illustrations.

Midwest Lumber Museum, Inc., Clinton, $3,000
The relationship between the early settlers of Eastern Iowa who primarily worked
as farmers and those who primarily worked as lumbermen or mill owners will be

National Cattle Congress, Waterloo, $5,000
The cultural and historical significance of the National Cattle Congress (NCC),
including McElroy Auditorium and Electric Park Ballroom, will be researched to
create an introduction video for visitors, with the research used to submit an
application for the NCC to be added to the National Register of Historical Places.

St. Lucas Historical Society, St. Lucas, $1,000
To hire an expert to help preserve and interpret America’s agricultural stories as
they pertain to the Haure Blacksmith Shop in St. Lucas.

“Each of these projects are preserving important pieces of America’s agricultural story.
We are pleased to be able to continue to contribute to preservation of this nationally
important story,” commented Don Short, SSNHA President.

Projects funded through SSNHA Grant Programs must provide a 1-1 non-federal match
to the grant award. Since the program began in 2001, Silos & Smokestacks has funded
over $1.6 million to non-profit organizations, local governments and communities in
Northeast Iowa to preserve America’s agricultural heritage.

Silos & Smokestacks National Heritage Area is one of 49 federally designated heritage
areas in the nation and is an Affiliated Area of the National Park Service. The Heritage
Area covers 37 counties in the northeast quadrant of Iowa. Interstate 80 borders it on
the south and Interstate 35 borders it on the west. Through a network of sites, programs
and events, SSNHA interprets farm life, agribusiness and rural communities – past and
present. To learn more about Silos & Smokestacks National Heritage Area, please visit

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