Friday, January 27, 2017

Thank you Glidden Iowa

Glidden, Iowa welcome sign as seen from Highway 30
I owe many thanks to the City of Glidden, Iowa, and the Glidden Public Library for allowing me access to community resources, without which I would not have made progress on my current and ongoing project (a project I will reveal in the very near future!).    Thank you all, on behalf of Veterans and Their Pets(SM) and myself, for the opportunity, for which I have spent countless hours in the pursuit of research, studies, and leisure reading over the past couple of months.  Never before have I read so many books, shipped on loaner, from various parts of Iowa.

I arrived in Glidden for the first time on September 15, 2015.  Tour De PACLANTIC, my cross country bicycle fundraiser for Veterans and Their Pets, stopped here for a brief stay for recovery and to sit out a passing storm.  Glidden is northwest of Des Moines, just over 1-square mile, has an elevation of 1,237 (with the help of the New Cooperative elevator it reaches to 1,603 unofficial feet), and a population of 1,146 (according to the 2010 census).

Photo by Harold Palmquist   Merle Hay Post, American Legion
The City of Glidden carries with it, the unfortunate distinction of being the hometown of the first American casualty of World War I, that of Merle David Hay.  Merle, born on July 30, 1896, enlisted in the US Army from Des Moines Iowa on May 3, 1917.   Following his training, he was shipped to France sometime in July of 1917.  On November 3, 1917, at the age of 21, he died in service to his country "somewhere in France".

Merle Hay is a big part of Glidden's past, and if a person were to walk down Idaho Street (the main street) where the business district lies, the name comes up in a couple of places.  There are two signs that I know of, both of which are pictured below, that of The American Legion Post 386.  There is a beautiful monument dedicated in his memory at the Merle Hay Memorial Cemetery, immediately off of Highway 30's north side and just west of Glidden.

If you were to stop a Glidden local who has been a resident for any length of time, and ask about the name Merle Hay, the subject would certainly be familiar to them.  I was fortunate enough to meet Erin Wolf, the city's librarian, who's encyclopedic knowledge of the area is anything but dull if not amazing.  During my most recent conversation with her, at the time of this post, I found that her knowledge extends to when Glidden was referred to as a plat.  Not that plat history is the limit of her experience, that is all that we got around to covering.

Photo by Harold Palmquist  New Cooperative

My first impression - not based on fact but observation- of Glidden was that it developed as a result of the railroad, and that it is perhaps older than the now larger city of Carroll, Iowa, about 9 miles to the west.  This is due, in large part, to the fact that the railroad exists immediately south of the city.  The photo of the New Cooperative grain elevator (366ft tall) describes in itself an influential industry part of Gliddens history as well. Another impression that I drew from presumption, was that the city of Carroll may have come about due to the automobile and the intersection of major arteries travelers made popular in later years.

Later, I would learn, that the town came about as a destination along the railroad.  The town, in fact, is named after a Northwestern railroad director, Joseph Farwell Glidden,  back in 1867.  The city of Glidden was incorporated on October 2, 1873.  A brief history of Glidden's beginnings can be found in the "Glidden Sesquicentennial"
Photo by Harold Palmquist  Glidden Grocery
Here is a photo of The Glidden Grocery taken back in September of 2015.

Photo by Harold Palmquist  Rush Inn
Photo of Rush Inn, Glidden, Iowa

Photo by Harold Palmquist

Photo by Harold Palmquist 2016 Tree

Photo by Harold Palmquist

A copy of casualty of war notice.  Courtesy of Glidden Library
History of Merle Hay Post American Legion

Photo by Harold Palmquist of a picture framed photo which includes the Presbyterian Church of Glidden
Photo by Harold Palmquist  First Presbyterian Church, Glidden
 The First Presbyterian Church of Glidden, Iowa, built in 1908.  This photograph was taken from the same perspective of the preceding photo, the one of the lineup in front of the Presbyterian Church.

 The Dahn Woodhouse Funeral Home in Glidden, Iowa.  I met Bob Woodhouse at The Downtown Lounge on New Years Eve, December 31, 2016.

 This house was built in 1903.  Absolutely beautiful!

Tour De PACLANTIC, Veterans and Their Pets, Glidden Graphic,, Next Big Single, ,
Glidden Graphic and Next Big Single
What an interesting find this was.  I encourage you to check out both of these places if you are ever in town, especially if you need some recording done.  Bill Brown will impress you either way.  Glidden Graphic and Next Big Single at Sound Cloud as well as their Facebook page. , ,
Downtown Lounge, Glidden Iowa
I was at the Downtown Lounge on New Years Eve, December 31, 2016 and shared a toast along with others to welcome in the New Year.

Sturm Taxidermy.

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