Cedar Falls Historical Society Oral History Interviews, 1963-1995.

Collection Overview

Title: Cedar Falls Historical Society Oral History Interviews, 1963-1995.

Record Series: MsC-102 [Box 36-37]

Record Group:


Creator: Cedar Falls Historical Society 

Date: 1963-1995

Extent: 2 boxes (0.42 linear feet)

Repository: Special Collections and University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.

Language: This material is entirely in English.

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Scope and Content

These oral history tapes were recorded for the Cedar Falls Historical Society.


Box 1

Tape la--Florence Clay Knox, November 23, 1963
(Recollection of girlhood in Cedar Falls, Iowa) c. 1800s.
Time: 30 min. each side. Interviewer: Herb Hake.

  • birth
  • Clay Street
  • mainstreet
  • town size
  • some local residents and merchants
  • dry goods stores
  • Commercial Hotel
  • "the big ditch"
  • Baptist Church
  • E.L. Andrew's store
  • Mr. Wyth
  • Methodist Church bell
  • transportation
  • Omnibus
  • surrey
  • livery barn
  • entertainment
  • streets
  • 4th of July "Liberty Car"
  • boating on the river
  • clubs and societies
  • schools: Mainstreet, Central, & Lincoln

Tape lb--Florence Clay Knox

  • Arthur LaVon
  • "Fits" Grease
  • Crosby home with fountain
  • servitude in the home
  • seamstress
  • Normal School
  • board sidewalk from town to Normal School
  • first cement sidewalk in Cedar Falls
  • brick sidewalks
  • street lights
  • Cedar Falls' relationship to Waterloo
  • newspapers
  • mail
  • Hearst family
  • Congregational Church

(the interviewer tends to dominate the interview)

Tape 2--Fred D. Cram, February 19, 1964
History of the College. Interviewer: H erb Hake

  • SIDE A (~30 minutes):
    • 0:00 - recorded in Radio studios; Fred D. Cram as Professor, Extension worker, and archivist for the Iowa State Teachers College
    • 1:30 - Orphans home established for deceased Iowa Civil War soldiers' children; Annie Wittenmyer, the organizer of the Iowa Soldiers Orphans Home in Davenport, Iowa; Cedar Falls Lumber Company.
    • 3:20 - Old North Hall.
    • 7:30 - Senator Edward G. Miller as a supporter for a Normal School in Iowa; 1876 State took over the area and established a Normal School.
    • 9:30 - James C. Gilchrist made superintendent, later president.
    • 10:30 - Named the Iowa State Normal School.
    • 12:00 - Order of first buildings built.
    • 15:00 and 19:00 - Homer H. Seerley as president in 1886.
    • 25:00 - Bertha Martin recruited by President Seerley.
    • 30:00 - Louis Begeman insistent on changing the name of the school.
  • SIDE B (~28 minutes):
    • 0:00 - Fred D. Cram and his life.
    • 2:20 - State Board of Education; rearranged engineering.
    • 4:30 - Department heads created.
    • 7:00 - Irving H. Hart and the Extension Service.
    • 9:50 - Fred D. Cram - having the first full-time Extension Service assignment in 1920.
    • 11:00 - A.C. Fuller and the Campanile, bells from New York.
    • 12:00 - The Dean’s house built for Seerley.
    • 15:00 - Homer H. Seerley as second president (1866-1928).
    • 16:00 - Orval Ray Latham, third president (1928-1940).
    • 17:30 - First Dean, Nelson until 1961.
    • 18:30 - North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools took action once Seerley left, not enough advanced degrees.
    • 22:00 - Economic depression and the impact on the school.
    • 22:30 - Malcolm Poyer Price as fourth president (1940-1950); Price had to deal with the effects of World War II; Decimated student body.
    • 24:00 - James Maucker as fifth president in 1950.

Tape 3--Les and Leo Hughes, May 9, 1964
History of the Cedar Falls Band.

Interview conducted in the Basement of Hughes Dry Goods Company with Leo and Les Hughes by interviewer Herb Hake.

  • Side A (31:43)
    • 0:15 The Cedar Falls Band formed as a lodge band, and Leo and Les Hughes discuss the early band directors, Hewitt, B. W. Meryl, F. A. Fitzgerald, and Latham McCreary who left the band to be involved with the college; as well as the involvement of their father, George Hughes. 
    • 5:45 George Hughes traveled for the international harvester company, and was a general agent for borrowers. His family came to Cedar Falls in 1892.
    • 6:30 Les was manager of the band from 1905 to 1940. His instrument of choice was the Double B Bass, while Leo played the trombone. Les and Leo both tell stories concerning their instruments.
    • 9:15 First Committee members were George Hughes, who served for 40 years; L. O. Robinson, who served for 20 years; I. A. McNabb, who served 15 years; John Berg, who served 25 years; and Frank Weisbard, who served 15 years.
    • 9:45 Les, secretary of the treasury of Cedar Falls Band, started before 1905 and was in this position until 1942. He then talked about the band’s finances, which came from committees, personal funds, local and non-local clubs, and generous individuals.
    • 12:45 Les discussed some of his responsibilities, which included establishing the rules for the band. Some of the rules were to wear black shoes, as well as having general respect for everyone involved. The rules started being taught when they were members of the junior band.
    • 15:00 The Cedar Falls Band was written about in Chicago, publicizing the band to have millions of dollars of support in Chicagoland publicity.
    • 16:00 First festival in Chicago for Cedar Falls Band in the year 1932
    • 17:00 Discussion of the Junior Bands, Auxiliary Bands, and Senior Bands
    • 18:30 Discussion about special training in Chicago. Leclair Eells on the French Horn and Bob Pierce on the trumpet went to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for training.
    • 19:30  Membership interest was kept alive through trips and community involvement, such as weekly concerts, holiday performances, and Decoration Day (later known as Memorial Day).
    • 21:00 Playing in Waterloo, on account of Waterloo not having a band.
    • 22:15 Problems with union bands in Dubuque, Marshalltown, Sioux City, and Des Moines, which were countered by the Elks Lodge Parade, which was a one band parade. The Elks Lodge took care of the Cedar Falls Band throughout this time.
    • 23:45 Removed from the unfair to play list. This was due to lack of competition on account of the Cedar Falls Band being nonprofit.
    • 24:30 First building for the band in 1917 for $8,000 and the second building for $9,600. When Les left his position as manager, the band was $5,600 in debt.
    • 25:15 Proposal for buildings, practice location, investment, and unification.
    • 25:45 Chicagoland Music Festival which has been held since 1930.
    • 26:15 The Cedar Falls Band was able to enter the Chicagoland Music Festival because of a Waterloo city council member and a newspaper article describing the band.
    • 27:00 Brian Russell was a part of the band at this time, and Mr. Sousa was the director.
    • 27:30 The first 3 times they won first place.The first time they didn’t know who won until they were sent to the stage.
    • 28:45 The band met James C Pitrello at the festival.
    • 29:30 How the judging of the winners happened, which required them to go to multiple theaters where bands were gradually eliminated.
    • 30:00 They went to the festival in 1932, 1934, 1936 (won second place that time). Mr. Melichar was the director when they won these awards.
    • 30:45 The festival chose the music played.
    • 31:15 The band played under the direction of John Philip Sousa, Borheim Crell, and Carl King.
  • Side B: 11:56
    • 0:15 John, the bass player, went around the world with Sousa
    • 0:30 Brought in 2 pianos to play Stars and Stripes Forever.
    • 1:00 Leo and Les talked about what instruments they played while with an orchestra. Leo played the harp, which he taught himself, as well as the Organ at a Catholic church for many years. Les played the violin, which Fitzgerald taught him. They also discuss the transition to different instruments and who owned which instruments as the music of the band evolved. The band owned large instruments and the members owned small instruments, but they were allowed to take the large instruments home to practice with.
    • 5:00 Doc Arnolds brought in an empty hayrack to separate Cedar Falls Band from the union band in Dubuque.
    • 6:00 Asked not to come to Davenport by the Davenport Lodge, during the struggles with the band unions.
    • 6:15 Horses sent from Denver by Al Sweet. The band goes from Denver to Colorado Springs. Al Sweet invited them to the Elks Lodge.
    • 8:00 Les and Leo Hughes recalled multiple band shenanigans. They described the time Les Hughes had an article of clothing shoved up the horn, causing him to play a muted horn in concert. Also, the time at the Iowa City convention, when Elks Lodge porters were supposed to take the equipment to the band’s rooms. The porter got drunk, pulled a knife out, and chased the band.
    • 10:30 Manager had to order 25 cabs in advance to handle trips to the cities.
    • 11:15 Sign off and farewell.

NOTE: This interview with Les and Leo Hughes was digitized by an external group and is available online at http://www.cedarnet.org/cfband/.  

Tape 4--"History in Houses", May 10, 1964
Narration by Herb Hake for Slide Show.

  • Side A (~30 Minutes)
    • 0:00 Herb Hake implied that this was a presentation, or an audio sample pool of data, made by the Cedar Falls Historical Society about homes with personality in Cedar Falls. The data was collected by Dr. Charles T. Leavitt and his wife, with data from Mrs. Blanche Shwanky, Mrs. Fannie Case, Mrs. Boyd Heirs, Mrs. C M McHue, Mrs. Clark Streeter, Margrie Hansen, and Joe Clay; with additional data coming from local records the writings of Peter Melendy and Roger Leavitt. Color photographs were taken by Daryll Porter. The script was written by Herb Hake, and edited by James Hearst.
    • 1:00 In 1850 Samuel H. Rownd made a trip through Iowa, and he stopped at Cedar Falls, the year after it got its current name. Rownd brought his family to Cedar Falls in 1859 where he had bought 4,000 acres of land. He owned most of College Hill, Cedar Heights, and lots of land to the south.
    • 2:15 Stephen Bishop came to Cedar Falls in 1852 and built his own house. Bishop worked at a drugstore for a few years before he started working at a nursery where his health and wealth increased. 18 years later, he took on a partnership creating Bishop and Bancroft Nursery. He was later elected to the city council. Bertha Bishop, Stephen Bishop’s daughter, was one of the first nurses in Cedar Falls.
    • 3:45 Joseph Sartori was one of the many German immigrants that settled in Cedar Falls. His house was built in 1875, and he did all of the brick and masonry work by himself. He had a talent for buying and selling. Sartori Memorial Hospital was named after him.
    • 5:15 The house at 1021 Clay Street was built in 1867 by Fitzroy Sessions, whose family lived there for many years. It later became home to Roger Leavitt in April of 1888. He helped found the new Cedar Falls National Savings Bank, as well as being one of the first cashiers. Leavitt also served on the Iowa Normal School board, as well as being involved on the board of education. He also prioritized working with the community over working on his business.
    • 7:00  In 1902 Roger Leavitt and his wife moved to a house at 1107 Washington Street, which was built in 1876 by Peter Melendy. Melendy originally lived there for 3 years, before he sold his house to I. D. Gilkey, who later swapped houses with Leavitt, moving into the house Leavitt owned at the time, which was at 9th and Washington. Leavitt and Melendy were compared with their involvement in the community and charities. The presenter recalled that they prioritized their community over their own businesses.
    • 7:30 Melendy, originally from Ohio, was interested in livestock and shipping livestock to the east coast. He moved to Cedar Falls and was involved in the Cedar Valley Fair in 1859. Later he was involved with the Iowa State Fair, as well the Iowa Agriculture College and the Iowa State Normal School. In the early 1880s Melendy left for Tennessee, but moved back in 1886 and built his home at 824 Washington Street. He later became mayor and wrote a book, and it was during this time the Carnegie Library in Cedar Falls was built. His step daughter, Marilyn McClarland built a house on 1837 Washington street. She taught English at the Normal School, and she married one of her former students, Sam Walker. He founded the Cedar Falls Record in 1900, he died 1905, and Marilyn returned to teaching. Later she was appointed as Dean of Women, at the Iowa State Normal School in 1908 and lived on 23rd Street. Her mother, Mrs. Melendy moved in with her daughter and Dean Walker. She encouraged, by example, her female students to live as members of polite society. Her house was relocated to Ellen Street for the construction of a store.
    • 11:00 Odds Fellow Hall was built in 1863 by Alex Fox. It was made with income from the mill and supplemented with loans.
    • 11:45 Alex Fox’s wife and daughters all died on the same day from an epidemic.
    • 12:00 C. A. Wise lived in a  Mansard-roofed home on 809 Washington Street which had an elaborate study on the 3rd floor. Wise came to Cedar Falls in 1863. He had a drug emporium partner, then bought out his partner in 1890, and renamed the business C. A. Wise and Sons and served as a leading businessman.  
    • 13:00 The Wilson Boarding House, originally owned by A. Thompson was located at 521 Clay Street. Thompson came to Cedar Falls in 1863 and opened a hardware store. He later sold it to Wilson whose wife converted it into a boarding house. The boarding house was considered a matchmaking factory for many couples.
    • 14:00 Fred Matthias, a German carpenter, came to Cedar Falls in 1880, where he lived at 9th and Washington streets. He was the senior member of a partnership, and his daughters all lived in town. Two of his daughters lived next door to him, and the other one lived nearby.
    • 15:15 C. J. Knapp completed residence. He and Thompson were bank partners and their wives were sisters. The wives died a year apart from each other, as well as the bank collapsing soon afterwards in 1884. Knapp committed suicide and the house went to Marshall, where a wedding happened on the property. Later the house became a Women’s Club house, and was dedicated to Emma Pfeiffer-Merner in 1929.
    • 17:30 Edward Townsend, a local banker, decided to make his house look like a castle. He dissolved his bank before the crash. Other occupations of Townsend included, working with lumber, being a mayor, a senator, as well as on the board of trustees.
    • 18:30 The First National Bank was established in 1873 by two brothers who had a farm. Their property had lots of value which included a church, servants, clergy, and quarters for all of them. Then the bank failure caused this to collapse, and all that was left was the field barn.
    • 20:15 415 Walnut Street is where John Forrest lived when he came to Cedar Falls in 1886. He made barley and wheat at his mill. Forrest would make oatmeal popular as a breakfast.
    • 21:45 Danial Wild had 9 kids, wanted a large house, so he hired W. A. Robinson to construct his house in 1875. It was also a shoe store until it was bought by the Millers who were Wild’s cousins.
    • 22:30 Norman Harris had 5 kids. He lived on 601 12th Street and was the senior partner of Harris and Cole. He made a new factory, which replaced the first factory. This caused Main Street to be revised and the residential district grew.
    • 24:00 W. A. Bryant came to Cedar Falls in 1875 and he lived at 305 Clay. Bryant entered the pavement industry, and he laid the pavement for many roads.
    • 24:45 The house at 812 Main was built in 1880 by Ed Wilson and is considered testimony to love. For 20 years he was engaged to a woman but she had promised her father that she would not marry until he died. Wilson waited until after her father died but by then she had epilepsy. They never married and ended as close friends.
    • 25:45 Homer Seerley had the Dean’s residence constructed.
    • 26:15 Clothing store by Sawyer, which was one of four.
    • 26:45 At 9th and Main streets is Joe Clay’s childhood house, Clay’s father was a factory owner.
    • 27:30 Dugane came to Cedar Falls in the 1870s, where he entered the milling business. His house was on Main Street.
    • 28:00 Closing
  • Side B
    • Silence

Tape 5a--Anna Arrow Petersen (Mrs. P.C.)
Early 1900s. Time: 10 min. October 24, 1964

Viking Pump
Danish Community ("Little Denmark")

Tape 5b--Mary Marsh (Mrs. Ed)
1853-1880s. Time: 15 min. Counter: 150. November 10, 1964
Brief history of grandparents coming to Cedar Falls in 1853. Recollections of merchants and businesses along Main Street.

  • various doctors
  • Emmet Mullarky
  • Dahl family
  • hospitalization

Tape 5a--Stella Robinson Wynegar
(Memories of Main Street) 1880s Counter: 130 Time: 10 min. November 7, 1964
Mrs. Wynegar talks a great deal about the various businesses located on Main Street during the 1880s. She also describes the various street lights, wooden pumps, paper mill, slaughter house, sidewalks, stump in middle of street, trolley, Indians, and Chinese laundryman.

Tape 5b--Stella Robinson Wynegar
Time: 15 min.

  • Indians
  • Footes Cider Mill
  • ice skating on the river
  • horse racing on the river
  • ice house
  • brick kilns
  • dam on the river
  • swimming in the river
  • Illinois Central Railroad covered bridge
  • oldest house in town

Tape 6--Robert M. Sutton, May 5, 1966
Address given at the 1966 Banquet of the Cedar Falls Historical Society. Speaker introduced by Leland L. Sage. Speaker thanked by Iver Christoffersen.

  • SIDE A (~30 minutes)
    • 0:00 - Leland L. Sage gives introduction.
    • 1:00 - Quote by General William T. Sherman. William Dave Peterson and Professor Jordan were the other speakers considered.
    • 6:00 - Robert M. Sutton starts his speech, "Sucker and the Hawkeye, Compare and Contrasts" as the guest speaker from Illinois. Sutton was part of the Illinois Historical Survey and the Champagne Historical Society.
    • 14:00 - "How the West Was Won" and the idea of Western movement and pioneer communities.
    • 18:00 - French mining in the region where Wisconsin, Illinois, and Iowa meet, in 1720. Fur trade, slavery, use of the Mississippi River and a focus on Western immigrant literature (guides)
    • 18:30 - Speaker mentions his emphasis on railroads
    • 21:00 - Iowa and Illinois complemented each other post-Civil War. Granger Movement and Railroad Safety Legislation.
    • 23:30 - Written guides given out to people moving West with information about water sources, game, and general information.
    • 25:00 - John Mason Peck was Sutton's hero and the author of "A Guide for Emigrants," "A New Guide for Emigrants," and "A Gazetteer of Illinois." Peck knew a lot about the history, geography, and sociology of Illinois.
    • 29:00 - Peck was a Baptist missionary and abolitionist who went West in 1817. There, he founded many religious institutions and the first historical society.
  • SIDE B (~30 minutes)
    • 0:00 - There is only one satisfactory biography of John Mason Peck but it was lost in the Civil War. Peck's idea of American destiny in the Western world was to make religion and education the foundation of new civilization.
    • 00:30 - John B. Newhall was another writer whose work included Illinois.
    • 3:00 - Newhall talked about the joining of the Illinois River and the Mississippi River.
    • 5:00 - Military bounty area where War of 1812 veterans could get their bonus and land.
    • 9:00 - There were handbooks made for British immigrants that included routes. They also influenced Europeans to go to America and move West.
    • 11:30 - Newhall wanted to join the Gold Rush but died of cholera. Burning of the Rock Island Bridge.
    • 17:30 - Illinois' roads zigzagged while Iowa's were very East/West. Wanted to build a railroad to connect California with the East.
    • 19:15 - Started building the Dubuque and Pacific Line, which later became the Dubuque and Sioux City Line.
    • 22:30 - The Illinois Central Railroad (IC) interested in the Dubuque and Sioux City Line. This line reached Cedar Falls on April 1, 1861. The city held a gala celebration on April 11, 1861. In closing, Sutton gave a quote by Indian poet, Rabindranath Tagore.


Tape 7--"River to Railroad", October 7, 1966 (~28 minutes and 30 seconds)
Narration by Herb Hake for Slide Show.

  • 0:00 - John C. Hartman declared Paul Somaneux, a French hunter and trapper, the first white man in Cedar Falls.
  • 0:30 - Sac, Fox, and Winnebago Native Americans mentioned in relation with surveyor Robert Stewart. Until William Sturgis and Erasmus D. Adams came, there was no record of white settlement. A.R. Fulton's book, The Red Man of Iowa, addresses the Native American name for the Cedar Fiver and how it became known as the Cedar River.
  • 1:30 - Lieutenant Zebulon Pike called the River the "Red Cedar River." In 1845, William Sturgis came to the area and it became known as Sturgis Falls.
  • 2:30 - John Overman and Dempsey Overman purchased the claim and water rights from Sturgis and renamed the area Cedar Falls. The Overman brothers moved to the area in February 1848 and dug a race, built a dam, and created a sawmill.
  • 4:00 - In 1850, a mill was built and a vertical blade saw was used.
  • 5:00 - Because John Deere made the first self-scouring moldboard plow out of a steel circular saw, the Overmans probably had a circular saw too.
  • 6:00 - In 1868, steam power was added to the growing mill. The dam was completed in 1938. While the first version was logs and bricks, the completed Overman dam was the best and most substantial in the state at that time.
  • 9:00 - Andrew Mullarky built a store on the corner of Main St. and First. Iver Christoffersen helped with the construction of the building, which later became a music store. Many court documents were stored here.
  • 11:00 - In 1852, Black Hawk County became independent from Buchanan County. Overman Park was given as land to be the courthouse, and Cedar Falls became the first county seat of Black Hawk County. J.M. Overman was the first mayor of Cedar Falls.
  • 14:00 - William Sturgis claimed the north of the region when he settled while Erasmus D. Adams claimed the south. The Overmans bought from both Sturgis and Adams. Erasmus D. Adams fathered the first white child in Cedar Falls.
  • 15:30 - In 1852, Zimri Streeter formed the Republican Party in Cedar Falls and became a state representative.
  • 17:00 - The Civil War halted the construction of the Dubuque and Pacific Line (later called the Dubuque and Sioux City Line, and finally, the Illinois Central Line). Eventually it was built and ended Cedar Falls' isolation. The journey from Dubuque to Cedar Falls became six hours instead of two weeks by ox team.
  • 19:00 - Waterloo became the end track instead of Cedar Falls, allowing Waterloo to grow more.
  • 19:30 - Peter Melendy was a huge advocate for the railroad, active in the community, a founding father of Iowa State College, and was a president of the Iowa State Fair.
  • 20:00 - Melendy helped establish the Civil War Soldiers Orphan Home in Cedar Falls.
  • 21:00 - In 1869, J.B. Powers, S.M. Pierce, and Melendy wanted to make the orphans home into a normal school.
  • 22:00 - The Iowa State Normal School was established on March 15, 1876. The First 75 Years by Irving Hart.
  • 23:30 - Chicago and Great Western Railway tracks in Cedar Falls were completed in 1884.
  • 24:30 - Melendy made plans for a railway to run north and south with Cedar Fallas as a hub for the Midwest.
  • 25:00 - Melendy and the Overmans put more money than they could afford into the railroad and all the money they raised was wasted. Iowa Central depot for the railway no longer exists.
  • 28:00 - Peter Melendy died on October 18, 1901.

Tape 8--Toby and Oliver Olson, June 23, 1968
Cedar Falls as remembered by sons of Danish immigrants.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • SIDE A (~30 minutes)
    • 0:00 - Interview took place at the home of Oliver Olson. Toby was born in 1878 and Oliver was born in 1883. Toby Olson worked construction for the women's dormitory on campus. Oliver worked on a farm until he was 21 and then started making horse harnesses, shoes, and curtains.
    • 7:00 - Boys on campus had guns and did battle reenactments before the Spanish-American War.
    • 9:30 - A lot of Cedar Falls used to be open field.
    • 10:30 - There was a canning factory near the Illinois Central depot.
    • 11:30 - Paper and flour mills were water powered by the mill race. Cedar Falls began at Washington Street and along the Cedar River.
    • 12:30 - Newcomers got on the good side of the Native Americans.
    • 14:00 - Mullarky's store location is long debated.
    • 15:30 - The Burr Hotel became the Black Hawk Hotel. Henry Johnson had a store on Main Street with groceries and drugs.
    • 16:20 - Danish people made up most of the population and then the English arrived. Bethlehem Church on Main Street held a Danish service once a month.
    • 17:15 - The Dannevirke newspaper and the Holst family are mentioned.
    • 18:30 - Jens Nielsen invented a new pump to pump water out of a stone quarry.
    • 20:00 - Nielsen was not trying to create a big business but ended up forming the Viking Pump compay with George Wyth's help.
    • 21:00 - George Wyth was a businessman who helped Nielsen create the business. Dr. Will Hearst was more than likely an investor too.
    • 22:00 - The stone quarry at the corner of 18th and Main was later covered. Rock for Central Hall came from here.
    • 23:30 - The Field Brothers had a bank and imported stallions and cattled. Their bank failed and they moved to Canada.
    • 27:00 - Peter Melendy was very active in the community and was superintendent of the Cedar Falls schools. William A. Dinwiddie was in charge of soldiers at the college.
    • 29:00 - Greenwood Cemetery.
  • SIDE B (~28 minutes and 30 seconds)
    • 0:00 - The brothers talk about family heirlooms.
    • 3:00 - Horse races were on a horse track where Peet Junior High was, north of 27th Street.
    • 4:30 - Neils Madsen had the only house on Main Street.
    • 5:10 - The first automobile in Cedar Falls was a Red Ford 1909 Model T owned by Toby Olson.
    • 5:45 - The effects of the automobile on Cedar Falls mentioned.
    • 8:20 - There used to be a lot of hitching racks for horses on Main Street.
    • 9:00 - Prohibition.
    • 12:30 - The Olson brothers left Cedar Falls.
    • 14:50 - Roger Leavitt was a banker and wrote about the history of Cedar Falls. All of these histories were given to Waterloo.
    • 15:30 - Waterloo became the county seat before Cedar Falls had the chance to built a courthouse.
    • 17:00 - There were torch light parades in Cedar Falls.
    • 22:00 - The Illinois Central Line chose to put up shops in Waterloo instead of Cedar Falls because Cedar Falls charged too much for its mills. There used to be a streetcar/trolley around the college.
    • 26:00 - Ed Kuehne married the Olson brothers' sister and worked at the Rotary Club.

Tape 9a--Stella Robinson Wynegar
(Recollection of 90 years of residence in Cedar Falls)
Date: 1880s Time: 30 min. March 14, 1970
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • Birth
  • mills: flour, paper, grain
  • Overman family
  • kerosene street lights
  • carbon street lights
  • business district
  • Overman Park
  • schools: Main Street, Central
  • Bess Streeter Aldrich
  • Zimri Streeter
  • Methodist Church
  • Baptist Church
  • Merchants along mainstreet
  • saloons
  • Chinese laundryman
  • Packard Opera House
  • Soldiers Orphans' Home on mainstreet
  • condition of streets
  • wooden sidewalks
  • creek on 5th St. & Main
  • Baptist Church on 5th St. & Main
  • brick paving
  • Farmer's Home Hotel
  • gasoline trolley
  • automobiles
  • run-away horses
  • Transportation
  • barns
  • property size
  • Entertainment
  • movie theater on 2nd & Main
  • horse races on the Cedar River
  • wooden dam
  • circus
  • building the bridge across the river
  • three railroads
  • Peter Melendy
  • Raab Pottery Shop
  • Harris Pump Factory

Tape 9b--Stella R. Wynegar
Time: 20 min.

  • Harris Pump Factory
  • husband's occupations
  • family history
  • family dwellings
  • sidewalks
  • inventor of Viking pump
  • wages for men and women
  • first furnace in Cedar Falls

Tape lOa--Stella Robinson Wynegar
(Recollection of 90 years of residence in Cedar Falls)
Date: 1880s Time: 30 min. August 15, 1970
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • Illinois Central Railroad
  • wooden covered bridge over rail tracks
  • Indians camped in Cedar Falls
  • stockyards-5th & Water St. (State)
  • first post office
  • Cotton Theater
  • Wild Buffalo Bill's show in Melarky's pasture
  • circus
  • Cedar Valley District Fair
  • race track
  • family horse and airplane
  • trotting races at fair
  • Harry Israel and family
  • hydro plane on river
  • Mainstreet bridge
  • boating & swimming on river
  • church picnics held in Round Park in Cedar Heights
  • Rainbow Drive (origin of name)
  • William Taft in Cedar Falls
  • boys leaving for WWI
  • Armistice Day, November 11, 1918
  • Cedar Falls Concert Band
  • Knapp home
  • stone sidewalks
  • tar and gravel sidewalks
  • Ed Wilson
  • Joe Foster (night watchman at bank)
  • fire in Wisebard stable
  • WCF&N car barns' fire
  • mill fire
  • fire department equipment & its use
  • washing machine factory
  • Casey's Blacksmith Shop
  • early druggists

Tape lOb--Stella R. Wynegar
Time: 20 min.

  • liquor in drug store during prohibition
  • Pheiffer charity
  • first gas station
  • irst town marshal
  • Ku Klux Klan
  • Dead Man's Island in Cedar River
  • Owner of The Record
  • early doctors
  • watertower (broke & froze)
  • wooden water pipes (wooden boxes)
  • springs by river
  • early stores
  • state GAR camp
  • Old Central Public School
  • Field brothers & their horses
  • stone barn southwest of town

Tape 11--Joseph B. Clay, October 20, 1970
John Livingston, August 17, 1972
Recollections of a pioneer industrialist and a pioneer aviator.
Interviewer: Doris Ford

  • Side A: (32:15)
    • 0:00 October 20, 1970, interview with Joseph Clay at his home. 
    • 0:30 Joseph Clay recollected his life in Cedar Falls, including attending school. He graduated high school in 1898 and graduated from college in 1903.
    • 2:15 Discussion of Mrs. Weideger, a teacher.
    • 2:45 The interviewee discusses the Clay Construction Company, including the trips Clay went to Des Moines for business, the point when Cedar Falls became the location of the home office, the number of workers in Cedar Falls, as well as the construction of gates and equipment.
    • 5:00 The interviewer asked about the reenactment of the Battle of San Juan Hill, which Clay did not remember hearing about.
    • 5:45 Discussed how transportation and getting around Cedar Falls has changed, from horse and buggies to cars. Clay discussed his first car and he describes the trip that he made in 1913, going back to Cedar Falls from Chicago by the following day. It was the fourth car in Cedar Falls. Description of trolleys in Cedar Falls.
    • 9:15 The interviewer asked questions about Mr. Galloway, who helped build up the Cedar Heights area. He was one of Clay’ s neighbors and they met in 1926.
    • 10:15 Discussion of the prairies and the animals that resided in them. Clay discussed showing the local students the Native American Trails.
    • 12:30 Clay described Main Street when he was younger, as well as  the American Building, which eventually became a school, the Cedar Lumber Company, and what preceded it.
    • 14:15 Passenger trains in Cedar Falls and the number of trains a day, which was around 28 trains. 
    • 14:45 Discussed Leo and Les Hughes.
    • 16:15 Clay discussed the Cedar Falls Fair and the fairgrounds debts. The fairgrounds were unable to pay the debts, and so they got repurposed to be the school lot for Peet Junior High.
    • 17:15 Clay recalled the various mills in Cedar Falls, specifically the flour mill on the east end of second street. He described what the flour was used for at the post construction company. Afterwards the discussion turned to the mill west of the Main Street bridge, which was not remembered. They recall some other mills, specifically the washing machine factory and Weisbard’s Planning Factory.
    • 21:00 Harris and Cole brothers built many buildings that were water powered and later built a large building as their factory.
    • 22:00 The Overman family assisted in the construction of the hospital.
    • 22:30 Clay recalled Westrine Robins, a classmate who became involved in the construction of schools. He recounted what he claimed to be the funniest thing he had seen at the school: a professor from the college tipped a boat while fishing. Clay also recounted the local islands, Peter Melendy, the Mullarky’s Pastures, and the barn that was near the highway and 12th.
    • 26:30 The interviewee shares memories of entertainment from his childhood, such as "street rules" baseball and playing for the schools.
    • 28:00 Clay moved back in 1936 to check school, and his daughter Josephine ended up being the May Queen.
    • 29:15 Discussed the early fire department as well as some fire and storm disasters.
    • 31:45 Asked by the interviewer what the worst thing that happened to him was, which he said was when he fell through the skylight onto the foundry floor and broke multiple bones. 

This interview cuts off right around here, and does not resume on the next side.

  • Side B: (5:52)
    • 0:00 Beginning of a new interview with John Livingston through the Cedar Falls Historical Society. Livingston greeted the students.
    • 1:00 They discuss John Livingston’s flights and airplane stunts, such as walking on the wings, plane changing, and parachuting out of a plane for money. Danger was viewed as exciting for the pilots, and they supposedly did not feel very much fear.
    • 4:30 Discussed Cedar Falls interactions with pilots, given the threat of the town.
    • 4:45 The interviewer asked how many he had miles flown, and Livingston answered with an estimate of 20,000 hours flown, though he noted that during WWII he did not care about hours flown.
    • 5:30 Discussed the interviewer’s brother, who passed away during WWII.
    • 5:45 Sign off


Tape 12a--Florence Clay Knox
(Recollection of girlhood in Cedar Falls, Iowa)
c. 1880s. Time: 30 min. per side. June 29, 1973
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • Bess Streeter Aldrich
  • Chinese laundryman
  • Congregational Church
  • Commercial Hotel
  • Pheiffer brothers
  • Pheiffer brewery
  • Pheiffer Drug Company
  • kerosene street lamps
  • carbon arc street lights
  • only Black family
  • water tower (broke & froze)
  • Cedar Valley Fair
  • horse racing
  • automobiles
  • gasoline trolley
  • Woman's Club House
  • lovely old homes
  • Normal School
  • Principal Gilchrist
  • Cotton Theater
  • opera house
  • roller skating rink

Tape 12b--Florence Clay Knox

  • Overman block & other Overman property
  • Peter Melendy
  • first school in Cedar Falls
  • Stone bridge on mainstreet
  • mainstreet
  • public school discipline
  • mud streets
  • rock streets
  • board sidewalks
  • 4th of July "Liberty Car"
  • trolley car
  • city water system
  • garbage system
  • snow removal
  • transportation on the snow
  • sledding on "Cameron's Hill"
  • horse racing on the river ice
  • cutting ice for the ice house
  • trading with the Indians

Tape 13--George A. Bairnson, October 4, 1973
Anecdotes of 50 years of medical practice.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • SIDE A (~30 minutes)
    • 0:00 - August 1920, [Bairnson?] came to Cedar Falls.
    • 0:45 - Herb Hake was Dr. George Bairnson's patient. Dr. Bairnson started his work in Chicago but left for health reasons. He then became a family doctor.
    • 3:30 - Dr. Bairnson bought out the previous practice and started in Cedar Falls.
    • 4:00 - He was a druggist in Chicago for 13 years. Sartori Hospital didn't have a laboratory. Dr. Bairnson brought the first microscope.
    • 8:00 - There was a problem with clients not paying their medical bills.
    • 10:00 - Dr. Bairnson gained patients by making a lot of charges at businesses on Main Street.
    • 13:30 - Taxes on interest started.
    • 14:00 - During the Great Depression there was a lot of trading items for medical care.
    • 20:00 - Dr. Bairnson struggled to continue his education. Talked about his past in Chicago.
    • 26:30 - The effects of exposure to x-rays. Coolidge and gas tubes.
  • SIDE B (~30 minutes)
    • 0:00 - Dr. Bairnson was a roentgenologist and druggist. Most doctors were general practitioners but also acted as surgeons and anesthesiologists. Everyone did everything.
    • 1:15 - Specialists became more widespread.
    • 3:00 - Antiseptics and antibiotics were less common, so infection was much worse.
    • 5:30 - Most doctors took refresher courses every two years to stay up-to-date in the field.
    • 7:00 - The invention of antibiotics was great for medicine because people could be treated much faster.
    • 8:40 - Patients started to be advised to sit up and walk around after surgery instead of laying down to recuperate.
    • 11:45 - At the time, medicine was the most revolutionary practice.
    • 15:30 - Emergency rooms became more widespread so general practitioners were no longer on call 24/7.
    • 16:00 - In retirement, Dr. Bairnson left Cedar Falls and the medical practice.
    • 18:15 - Dr. Bairnson was a member of the Lion's Club and was there when it started. His was one of the best in the state. The third floor of the Regent field building became the Chamber of Commerce. Dr. Bairnson was chairman at one point. Their Chamber of Commerce ended up being one of the best in the state.
    • 21:00 - Arcturus Club was named after the light of the star, Arcturus, during the World's Fair. Herb Hake was a member for 15 years.
    • 25:00 - First differential blood count in the area.
    • 25:30 - Problems between hospital and trustees. $225,000 inventory of the hospital, contribution given.
    • 28:00 - Dr. Bairnson's pride in Cedar Falls and modernity.
    • 29:00 - Herb Hake's gratitude to Bairnson for all that he did for his family and for Cedar Falls.

Tape 14--Erma B. Plaehn, November 11, 1973
Gallery Talk on "Early Government in Black Hawk County."

  • Side A: 33:00
    • 0:00 Erma Plaehn spoke about early government in Black Hawk County, and she also discussed previous gallery talks.
    • 0:45 Iowa land began to be owned by settlers through Native American land sales. In 1846 there were only 44 counties. Black Hawk County was organized in 1853. The settlers had an existing model of government to work from, and the schools were separate from government.
    • 2:30 Discussed Black Hawk county, the organization of the county in 1853, and the counties that Black Hawk county used to be part of. She also discussed requirements for separate counties to be considered different counties and Black Hawk county setting up the legislature, which was similar to that of neighboring counties.
    • 4:15 Plaehn discussed the first county election, early Federal and State mail routes, property tax laws and descriptions, the process for establishing the county seat, and finalizing the selection by choosing Sturgis Falls. First election for officials in August of 1853, after the county seat was chosen.
    • 8:00 By 1854, Waterloo claimed to be bigger and growing quicker so the city protested the decision to give Sturgis Fall the county seat. Waterloo and Sturgis Falls fought some battles over this. Some people talked of compromise with Florence City becoming the new county seat. Waterloo talked to the state legislature, in Iowa City and became the county seat in April 1855, but complaints of fraud were brought up. Waterloo got the courthouse in July, 1855.
    • 11:00 Parcels of land were sold to finance the establishment of the courthouse, and some of them were also used to hold the courthouse.
    • 11:15 The presenter stated that Iowa started to understand county politics, and county judges are appointed throughout Iowa. Harry Truman was a county judge.
    • 12:00 Discussed township supervisors, also referred to as county supervisors. By 1860, there were 16 townships and 17 supervisors. In 1870 the number changed down to 3, but then later rose up to 7.
    • 13:00 Election districts originally split the county into two separate districts: the Cedar precinct and the Black Hawk precinct. One of the early things that they established was the county jail.
    • 14:00 Plaehn discussed the population increases since 1846, as well as the settling of Cedar Falls.
    • 14:45 Overmans entered local history.
    • 15:15 The mill races, which were connected to the river and competing mills, were tied to municipal utilities, but also a private enterprise.
    • 15:30 Discussed what motivated settlers to live in Cedar Falls.
    • 16:30 The Malarkey precinct dealt with Des Moines.
    • 16:45 Advertisements from local stores showed concern over winter shortages, on account of the weather. However, advertisements that came in from southeast Iowa did not, due to that part of the state not having shortages.
    • 17:45 Iowa claimed to have the oldest pre-post office, which was in Cedar Falls, 1850.
    • 18:15 Plaehn discussed the plans for organization in 1851, as well as leadership and some early issues after 1851. She mentioned some of the early mayors, such as the first mayor, Overman, as well as the city council and its growth over time, early issues with refuse, City Hall’s town writers, and the railroads. When the railroads arrived, they had a speed limit of 4 miles per hour. She also discussed the ordinances required to do business, and additional train rules.
    • 23:00 Plaehn discussed the poll taxes, travel ordinances, the first library which was established in the 1870s, the first cemeteries, Cedar Falls ordinances about saloons, ordinances concerning lewd public art, rules concerning vandalism, problems of vagrancy, dog licenses, and rules concerning haystacks in Cedar Falls.
    • 27:00 Peter Melendy’s writings on fires and bucket chains were mentioned, as well as the early fire department which was made in the Civil War.
    • 28:15 Engineers were hired to assist town design, and Plaehn mentioned various early forms of transportation, as well as the Macabryness bridge on Main Street, and the construction made from lamp wicks. Then she talked about the first sidewalks being constructed in 1853, as well as new railroads, the creation of gas and electric utilities, and the sewer construction.
    • 32:00 Cedar Falls explored various companies for the establishment of gas lines, as well as who to go to about the waterworks, which was brought about because of fire issues.
  • Side B: 25:15
    • 0:00 Peter Melendy’s writings on water works are mentioned, as well as prices for water use, and the beginning of construction on tracks for water and railroad in 1889.
    • 2:45 Plaehn discusses the various beginnings of certain aspects of Cedar Falls, such as in 1854, the ferry entered service. She also gives information about the town from 1857 to 1872, the construction of the first bridge, and the construction of the new bridge afterwards.
    • 3:30 Peter Melendy’s financial contributions to work involved in Cedar Falls, which tried to finance the construction of local railroads.
    • 5:00 The Cedar Falls Literacy Association created a private library in 1858, but in 1860, the books were donated to create a public library. This library lasted until a fire destroyed it, but construction of a new library through Andrew Carnegie's grants began. 
    • 6:45 The Iowa State Normal School (now UNI) opened in 1876, but when Mr. Gilchrist left ten years later, he took all of his books with him. This created library problems for the school. Many books were borrowed from other sources, including the music books, which were hymnals borrowed from churches.
    • 7:45 Discussed the local hospital, which was built in honor of Sartori’s parents.
    • 8:00 Plaehn discussed the government and communication, the publishing house and where it moved to, as well as the Gazette, which was underway in 1860, and the establishment of the newspaper The Northwest Democrat, which was in 1862.
    • 9:30 In 1890, John Wiegand was the owner of the Cedar Falls Record, although he would be more recognized later around Storm Lake.
    • 9:45 The school district was established in 1853, and Plaehn discusses the process of organizing and establishing the different local schools, including the local high school.
    • 10:00 Discussed the growth and expansion of utilities throughout Cedar Falls. She explained that during the early days of the electric light utilities, some people complained that the lights were not bright enough, so after the end of the contract, the city changed to a different utility company.
    • 11:00 At this point on the tape, the people in the gallery speak. Herb Hake asked for a list of the early mayors, and thus Plaehn read off a list of mayors. Plaehn remembered a piece of information during her listing of the early mayors, which was that in 1865, Cedar Falls began to qualify as a second class city, which meant that the city had more than 2000 residents. Plaehn went back to listing the mayors until 1900, and afterwards she mentioned the people involved with the Normal School, and then the early form of the newspaper.
    • 14:00 Plaehn discussed the Cedar Falls centennial in 1952. She also discussed the newspapers involved and whether or not these records were in the microfilm articles. She and Hake also discussed the differences between centennials and town dates, as not all of them being the most accurate of pairings.
    • 15:45 Applause and start of closing.
    • 16:15 Herb Hake and Erma Plaehn discussed recording interviews with the elderly residents of Cedar Falls, as well as the gallery talks. Hake also discussed some of the assumptions of history professors versus reality. Then Hake talked about his weekly radio program called “Our Iowa Heritage.”
    • 18:30 Plaehn mentioned Iowa City and early land offices, which were located in Burlington and Dubuque. She also discussed the first settlers' decision to wait until spring to settle, as well as cemeteries, while describing the very old ones, which were the ones by Springwood and Fairview, the one on 12th, and the one near the River.
    • 21:30 Discussed some regrets concerning oral history, namely how people who would have been ideal to get on tape and/or listen to are no longer able to, on account of them passing away, as well as getting topics straightened out, to prevent arguments concerning old stories. 
    • 24:15 Closing remarks.

Tape 15--Earl Eiler, November 24, 1973
Experiences in the butcher 's trade.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • Side A: 31:45
    • 0:00 Interview with Earl Eiler, which Herb Hake got the idea for by being asked by Bob Corney how much he knew about the 3 slaughterhouses in Central Park.
    • 1:00 The owners of the slaughterhouses were Charles Ginnings, Hans Larson, and Jacob Hansen. Eiler worked for Hans Larson.
    • 1:30 The slaughterhouses were all in one location because of the smell and this made it easier to clean up afterwards.
    • 3:00 The first day of the week, farmers delivered animals to the slaughterhouses. All the slaughterhouses were connected to a butcher shop. Eiler recalls the slaughterhouses were there a long time. The slaughterhouses were worked by the farmers selling their meat to one of the butcher shops, which would then tell the farmer to take the animal to the respective slaughterhouse, where the animals would be killed and hung. There were no packing houses at this time, so it was partially done at a slaughterhouse and partially done at the butcher shop. Some people would work at both the butcher shop and the slaughterhouse. Some days the job had 10 heads of cows and 20 heads of pigs.
    • 8:00 There was a clash with the local clergy for working on Sundays.
    • 8:30 The meat was refrigerated with ice through the icehouse until the ice failure of 1919-1920. The icehouse was a separate business from the meat trade.
    • 10:15 Discussed different transportation methods used over the years, which started with horse drawn wagons, and eventually shifted over into being just automobiles.
    • 10:30 Meat was refrigerated in the slaughterhouse itself.
    • 11:30 They prepared byproducts in the butcher shops.
    • 11:45 The small packing house in Waterloo was the only place to get pork in the summertime in the Cedar Falls and Waterloo area.
    • 12:30 The butchers needed to preserve the pork, sometimes curing the ham and bacon.
    • 13:00 Eiler recollected an anecdote about when George Hughes wanted to have some meat smoked, the butchers told him to get a large piece of hickory wood, so they could smoke the meat the way he wanted. When he got them the wood, they decided not to charge him, as they had gotten more wood then they needed for his meat. After this anecdote, Eiler discussed other places to smoke meat, other than the smokehouses, which were in the back of the market, behind the butcher shops.
    • 16:00 Eiler discussed the quality of the meat and the safety protocols, such as keeping the meat for up to a week. This was done by the butchers only keeping a week’s supplies. Eiler then gave the differentiation between aged meat and spoiled meat, as well as referring to the risk of blood near the bone, as well as how the meat was cured, which was by pumping the veins.
    • 20:30 There were three meat markets in town because there were three slaughterhouses in town. At first there was no middleman, but when the federal inspectors closed the slaughterhouses. Then the raw meat came from major packers and the prices of meat rose.
    • 25:00 Eiler worked 50 years in the meat market, and he reflected on the enjoyment of the job, which in his opinion, was the people.
    • 27:00 The coolness of the shop and slaughterhouse w what allowed it to operate. They started to use the ice chambers which came into use by 1912 to 1914, depending on the location.
    • 31:00 Discussed the process of dealing with specific requests of meat orders.
  • Side B: 20:15
    • 0:00 Eiler discusses how they gifted meat to employees, the prices of liver, and how they made their own meat for personal consumption.
    • 1:30 Eriler discusses bologna and the different flavors by way of spicing the meats. There were many varieties in the spicing for meats.
    • 2:15 All meat was brought in, rather than being prepared by the local slaughterhouses and butcher shops.
    • 2:30 The biggest changes in meat counters were that of having to depend on the meat packing plants, rather than the local slaughterhouses.
    • 4:30 For selling chicken meat, the butchers would kill chickens every weekend.
    • 5:00 Earl talked about the holiday meats: turkeys, ducks, geese. He compared the flavor of geese compared to turkeys, and talked about the multiple uses of goose grease.
    • 6:45 Eiler reflected on how the butchers dealt with excess amounts of meat, as well as how they dealt with the excess before refrigerators.
    • 8:45 Discussed the regular customers and their unique tastes, as well as a modern problem of most stores having the loss of personal connection with the customers and how in the old days, customers were friends. Eiler had knowledge of the business as well as the interest to maintain the job. He talked about how there were many deliveries each day, but that ceased during WWII. During the time of horses they used horse drawn wagons.
    • 14:00 Eiler talked about the consumption and uses of horse meat. He mentioned that he had eaten it before, and he discussed the flavor and texture before talking about some exotic meats, such as buffalo or bear.
    • 17:00 The experience was rewarding, but he would not return to today’s businesses, as they have lost that personal touch with the customer base, and people are now just a goal to achieve, rather than a friend to assist.
    • 17:45 Eiler thought the money goes either to the packagers or the dealers.
    • 18:30 He discusses the lack of H. W. Rath coming in to work at the plant.
    • 19:00 Closing remarks.

Tape 16--Charles J. "Chuck" Hearst, November 30, 1973
History of Maplehearst Farm.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • Side A: 32:45
    • 0:00 Interview with Charles J. “Chuck” Hearst at his home.
    • 0:30 First Hearsts into the region: 2 Scot-Irish brothers. One went south and the other went to Illinois. The north branch claimed to be simple yet proud. Some of the Hearst families went to the Waterloo area to farm, but the land was already owned, so they bought land near what became Cedar Falls. The farmland was fresh prairie that was full of rocks, and as the Hearsts removed the rocks, they had to create drainage paths by hand.
    • 3:45 Memories of James Hearst, the grandfather of Chuck Hearst. Chuck recalled some anecdotes of James Hearst. James’s sons did most of the farmwork, while James worked with the orchids and helped set up the Agriculture Association, which later developed into the Planters Association, and then to the Farm Bureau.
    • 6:45 In 1864 the Hearsts began to develop 160 acres, and the entire family assisted with the day to day management of the farm. James Hearst planted maple seeds. Chuck said that most of the farm was used for cultivation every year, even when there were drainage problems.
    • 9:15 James Hearst had strict observation of the Sabbath, and refused to work that day no matter what. However, he did help build telephone poles and sent his kids to college.
    • 10:15 Charles E Hearst got the farm because his two brothers became doctors, as well as one of his sister-in-laws. He had to work to keep the farm running, and he became quite involved in the farming community. During the 1920s, the farms were affected by two small depressions, and he went to Washington to work with the government on this.
    • 14:00 Discussed how the Wallace family, another local farming family, assisted Charles with combating the Great Depression. There were multiple times when the Wallaces and Charles went to Washington to work together against President Hoover. This was despite their strong Republican upbringings and beliefs; they believed that Hoover was not the best choice of president during this time.
    • 16:30 The local politics in farming communities involved Henry A. Wallace and Charles E Hearst frequently. They had some disagreements over what the correct methods were to handle local situations. Tama Jim Wilson, the secretary of agriculture, was considered ahead of his time by his peers in the farming communities of Iowa. 
    • 19:45 360 acres were acquired by Charles, but he was too busy, so he did not care for them, until he passed them down to his sons.
    • 20:30 Chuck began working on the farm with his brother Jim, after Jim got hurt in an accident and could not run the farm by himself. They worked together until they sold the farm in 1964.
    • 22:15 Chuck describes the issues of buying, owning and selling cattle, he compared this to gambling, and then mentioned that all farming was considered a gamble, all of the time. He describes the family farm and mentioned the thing that keeps a farmer tied to their farm, stating that it was something in the blood.
    • 25:45 Discussed Chuck’s involvement in Iowa politics. He was one of the farmers that Clarence Wilson took to Western Europe to help with the Marshall Plan. Afterward he was invited to speak to the Vandenberg Committee, whereupon he spoke about the problems he had noticed with the Germans and the Russians. The Russians were positioned to roll through Germany at a moment’s notice, and the younger German people were sympathizing for their older kinsfolk, and he was concerned that they would start to prepare for a third war, as they examined the wreckage of Germany. Chuck was also one of ten farmers who was sent to Russia to upgrade the Russian diet, while simultaneously a group of ten Russian farmers were sent to the Midwest to learn there. Because the Russians went out and toured some tourist attractions, such as DisneyLand, the American farmers got to go to tourist locations in Central Europe and in Russia.
  • Side B:

Tape 17--1973 Christmas Party, December 9, 1973, Part II
Recollections of 50-year residents: Iver Christoffersen, Clare Berg, Elmer Rasmussen, Mabel Nasby, Cleo Howard, and Fauntelle Bancroft.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 18--1973 Christmas Party, December 9, 1973, Part II
Recollections of 50-year residents: Mrs. L. E. Schwanke and Mrs. Nick Ilax, Frank and Fern Hitchcook, Edith Dryden, N. E. Brown, Herman Siepert, Robert Riker, Edith Berg, John J. McCoy, Louis Wood, Sally Paine, Ruth Casey, and Helen Isley.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 19--Hans and Aksel Holst, December 29, 1973
History of the Danes in Cedar Falls.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

  • SIDE A (~30 minutes)
    • 0:00 - In 1882, Martin Holst came from Denmark to Des Moines, and then Cedar Falls.
    • 2:30 - Martin came to America after the war in 1864 to avoid being drafted by the Germans.
    • 4:30 - The first Danish Evangelical Lutheran church in Cedar Falls was Nazareth Lutheran, and then Bethlehem.
    • 6:00 - All aroundn the country, conservative and liberal sides of Evangelical Lutheran churches split. In Cedar Falls, Bethlehem became the liberal side and Nazareth was conservative.
    • 9:30 - Dannevirke newspaper was a Danish newspaper in Cedar Falls. Martin Holst was the editor and N.U. Christiansen was his partner.
    • 10:30 - In 1932, Martin Holst died and Hans Holst became editor before August Bang took over Dannevirke.
    • 12:45 - Julegranen was the annual Christmas publication from the company.
    • 13:00 - Holst Printing Company was first Dannevirke Printing Company.
    • 15:00 - Hans was the hand typesetter, Thorvald took over mechanical, and Aksel was in charge of the bookstore.
    • 16:00 - Jens Nielsen, inventor of Viking Pumps, bought Danish books from them.
    • 17:00 - Jens Nielsen kept a record of all the Danish people living in Cedar Falls.
    • 18:30 - George Wyth was influential in manufacturing, advertising, and handling money for Viking Pumps.
    • 19:45 - Most Danes in Cedar Falls settled east of Main Street.
    • 21:00 - Most stores had a Danish-speaking employee because about one-third of the Cedar Falls population was Danish.
    • 22:20 - The Danish Brotherhood was an insurance society for Danish Americans.
    • 23:30 - A rule came out stating that all church services could be held in a foreign language.
    • 28:00 - In the Holst Brothers Quartet, Askel sang tenor, Hans sang second tenor, Harold sang baritone, and Thorvald sang bass.

Tape 20--Mrs. Charles Chickering, February 8, 1974
Recollections by a granddaughter of George V. Clark.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 21--Bert Schou, July 30, 1974
Experiences of a locomotive engineer.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 22--Inez Radell, August 6, 1974
Recollections by the daughter of a pioneer merchant.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 23--Oren F. Paine, November 9, 1974
Experiences in the building trade.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 24--Edith Dryden, December 2, 1974
Experiences of a milliner.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 25--1974 Christmas Party, December 8, 1974
Recollections of Danish traditions by Margaret Michaelsen, Lillian Nielsen, Iver Christoffersen, Mrs. Hieber (mother of Douglas Hieber), Theresa Petersen, Dagne Petersen, Harder Aksel Holst, and Olivia Johnson.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 26--Clara Nolte, January 4, 1975
Recollections of a German teacher and early advocate of Woman's Rights.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 27--Malcolm Price, Marh 17, 1975
History of the College during World War II.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 28--Robert H. Corning, February 8, 1976
Recollections of boyhood and manhood in hardware business.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 29--Robert H. Corning, February 8, 1976
Conclusion of interview.

Tape 30--Gerald S. Wise, June 18, 1976
Memories of boyhood in Cedar Falls and Sears, Roebuck career.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 31--Les Santee, September 2, 1976
Recollections of real estate salesman and state legislator.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 32--Gladys Hearst and Sally Pinkham, November 16, 1976
Recollections of WAVES officers stationed on ISTC campus during World War II.
Interviewer: Cornelia Davis

Tape 33--Iver Christoffersen, November 23, 1976
Memories of long-time local attorney and civic leader.
Interviewer: Herb Hake

Tape 34--Herb Hake, July 15, 1977
Personal recollections.
Interviewer: Alice Myers (2 copies)

 Box 2

Tape 35--Olivia Johnson, Part I, September 7, 1977
Identification and description of Museum exhibits.

Tape 36--Olivia Johnson, Part II, September 9, 1977
Identification and description of Museum exhibits continued.

Tape 37--Olivia Johnson, Part III, September 10, 1977
Identification and description of Museum exhibits concluded.

Tape 38--William D. Lynch, March 6, 1978
Recollections by a "Professor's Kid" of boyhood in Cedar Falls.
Announcer: Herb Hake

Tape 39--Ferner Nuhn, I and II, September 19, 1978 (2 copies)
Random recollections by a Cedar Falls author about his parents and their connections with the German Evangelical Church, father's association with the railroad and the building and loan business, Ferner's meeting and marrying Ruth Suckow, the Cedar Falls Art Association, famous visitors in the Nuhn homes, and father's success in bringing the Bible Conference to Cedar Falls.
Interviewer: Gladys Hearst

Tape 40--Ferner Nuhn, III (conclusion), September 19, 1978 (2 copies)

Tape 41--Interview with William D. Lynch

Tape 42--Interview with Nannett E. Waldman

Tape 43--Luther Burkett Program on Martin White and Iowa Pottery, March 25, 1979.

Tape 44--Interview with Welker Schaller, March 26, 1979.

Tape 45--Ice Cutting nd., Roger Miller, Waterloo
Interviewer: Nancy Redfern

Tape 46--Carl Howes, September 23, 1979
Interviewer: Maxine Schwank

Tape 47--Cedar City Open House, April 13, 1980
Interviewer: Elsie Randall Tietz

Tape 48--John Harns on Raab Vases, September 4, 1980
Interviewer: Nancy Redfern

Tape 49--Historical Society Banquet, May 9, 1980
Speaker: James L. Hearst

One-room School Experiences of UNI Staff and Faculty Members, interviewed by William Dreier

Tape 1: Jean and Gordon Porter, interviewed March 4, 1993

Side A: Jean - on staff from 1969-82 in Housing and Food Services
Side B: Gordon - on staff from 1968-82 in Physical Plant-Golf Course

Tape 2: Gordon Porter, Part II

Tape 3: Melvin Schneider, interviewed December 22, 1994

Side A: Melvin - on staff from 1945-58
Side B: Empty

Tape 4: Basil Reppas, interviewed January 25, 1995

Side A: Basil - on staff from 1961-present in Educational Psychology and Foundations
Side B: probably empty

Tape 5: Mildred Wood, interviewed May 16, 1994

Side A: Mildred -B.A. 1956, M.A. 1962, on faculty 1962-65
Side B: probably empty

Tape 6: William Dreier, recorded May 18, 1993

Side A: William - on faculty 1949-1985 Recording his memories of the one-room school in Hardin County, Iowa.
Side B: probably empty

Processing Information

Web version of this finding aid was created by Library Assistant Susan A. Basye, Library Assistant, July 1998; updated, April 11, 2013 (GP). Updated by Library Associate Dave Hoing, February 2018 and Archival Processor Tessa Wakefield, April 2021. Additional tape indexing provided by intern Violet Eggert, April 2021. Additional tape indexing provided by public history field experience student and SC&UA student employees, fall 2021. Formerly record series number: 00/00/01.