Edgar R. Smith, Fairfield Iowa lawyer

April 22, 2011 C Street

Fairfield lawyer and real-estate dealer E. R. Smith and family in front of their house at 103 South B Street, ca. 1903-1909. Edgar Russell Smith was born on August 25, 1869 in Birmingham, Van Buren County, Iowa, the older of the two surviving children of James Nelson Smith, a livery and feed-store keeper from Jefferson […]

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Then & Now: E. R. Smith home on C Street, Fairifield, IA

April 22, 2011 C Street

Then: This ornately detailed house at 103 South B Street belonged to Fairfield lawyer and real-estate agent Edgar Russell Smith, proudly photographed here with his family around 1903-1909. Especially noteworthy was the distinctive front porch spanning the entire B Street façade. Now: A century later, the house still stands virtually intact except for its original […]

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Parsons College newspaper 1887

April 21, 2011 Colleges & Schools

Ad in local Fairfield IA newspaper for Parsons College, 1887

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Fairfield Iowa early settlement

February 14, 2011 Fairfield Stories

Rory Goff contributes to http://www.facebook.com/fairfieldhistory and http://fairfieldiowahistory.com and is writing a Fairfield Iowa history to be published in 2012.

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White Brothers’ Tea Store, Fairfield, IA

February 13, 2011 Food and Drug Stores Business

“Fairfield Iowa in the Ice Age” was written on the back of this postcard of the entrance to the White Brothers’ Tea Store, known as the “White T Store,” in the early 1900s. The brothers Louis D. and Loren H. White sold tea and coffee at 107 West Broadway before moving in 1914 to the […]

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Gus and Sarah Unkrich family of Fairfield Iowa

February 13, 2011 Food and Drug Stores Business

Sarah Arabella (“Bella”) Huntzinger (1850-1927), wife of Fairfield Iowa grocer Gus Unkrich. Captioned “Bella Huntzinger Unkrich” in Huntzinger album. Photograph inscribed on back, “To Frank & Ella, Happy New Year.” No photographer, no date, but taken after 1881, when Bella’s brother Frank married Ella Sheward. Paper blindstamped B. F. K. Rives along upper left margin. […]

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Gustave Unkrich, Fairfield Iowa grocer

February 13, 2011 Food and Drug Stores Business

Gustave Adolph Unkrich (1845-1926), prominent Fairfield grocer. Captioned “G. A. Unkrich” in Huntzinger album. No photographer, no date. Born in Germany on April 21, 1845 to John H. and Fredericka L. (Gerson) Unkrich, Gus immigrated with his parents to the U.S. in 1859. His father was a government officer in Europe who came to America […]

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Then & Now: E. Burlington Tudor-style home

February 7, 2011 Burlington Ave.

Then and Now: 505 East Burlington Ave. during the 1930s (above), and as it stands today… photo taken January 2011 (below). Thank you to Barbara Beal for permission to use the 1930s photograph!

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Maharishi University time-travel to Parsons College

February 7, 2011 Colleges & Schools

Maharishi University of Management time-travel to former Parsons College, Fairfield, Iowa. Now: Looking north on the campus of Maharishi University of Management, January 2011. At left is the Maharishi Veda Bhavan building; at right is the venerable Bernhart Henn mansion. Then: The same view of Parsons College, ca. 1892. At left, Ankeny Hall was built […]

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Louis Thoma, Pharmacist, Fairfield IA

February 7, 2011 Business & Industry

Louis Thoma (1861-1940) Pharmacist, Proprietor and Manager of the Grand Opera House, Fairfield, Iowa. A man who built several landmark buildings around the square, one of which still carries his name atop all its original splendor; a man whose stately Italianate brick house still stands well-preserved at the northeast corner of Washington and B Streets; […]

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Underground Railroad route through Fairfield IA

February 7, 2011 Fairfield Stories

Did you know some Fairfielders participated in the Underground Railroad, helping slaves flee the South before the Civil War? One of the routes led from Missouri to Salem, Iowa to Fairfield, then north and east either to Richland and Clay or to Pleasant Plain, and thence east to Washington and Crawfordsville, there joining the main […]

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Grocery at 54 W. Burlington Ave, Fairfield, IA

February 7, 2011 Burlington Ave.

Gus Unkrich’s Grocery at 54 W. Burlington in 1876, with advertisement from the Fairfield Weekly Journal, 1888 (advertisement courtesy of Janet Roberts). For about 20 years Gus sold groceries, including his father-in-law’s flour, at this spot. Select here for a photo and brief bio of Gus Unkrich on Facebook by Rory Goff. Select here to […]

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South side of the square, west half, Fairfield IA in 1876

January 25, 2011 Central Fairfield

Picture courtesy of Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, Iowa. Just left of center, the brick double block of 54-56 West Burlington was built in 1872 and 1873 by pioneer Fairfield miller Franklin B.Huntzinger and his wife Sarah (Rudy). At 54 West Burlington behind the pump-handle in the street, the sign “G. A. Unrich, Groceries” advertises the […]

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Then and Now: 118-122 North Main Street, Fairfield

January 21, 2011 Central Fairfield

Above: Standing proudly at Main and Briggs Streets’ southwest corner in 1909 was Fairfield’s Grand Opera House, built in 1890 by J. E. Roth, J. S. Richardson, J. S. McKemey, and E. A. Howard. Ornately designed by Burlington architect Charles A. Dunham, it was Fairfield’s second theater, built seven years after the Odd Fellows had […]

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Louden Machinery Co., Fairfield, IA

January 21, 2011 Books

The Louden Machinery Company, world-renowned manufacturer of barn equipment, remains Fairfield, Iowa’s most famous success story. William Louden was born on October 16, 1841 in Cassville, Huntingdon Co., Pennsylvania. His parents Andrew and Jane (Speer) Louden had recently immigrated from Ireland, having married on January 6, 1840 in Belfast. William’s older brother John had died […]

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Then and Now: North Main Street, Fairfield, IA

January 21, 2011 Central Fairfield

Above: Looking northeast at R. H. Spence’s carriage shop, 121-123 North Main Street, Fairfield, IA ca. 1909, with some of Spence’s vehicles on display out front. R. H. Spence sold buggies here from 1905 to 1915, and afterwards served two terms as county treasurer. He then worked in the Farmers State Bank, on the site […]

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