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JCS319
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Tacoma

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 5:08:25 PM

There are currently 3142 county and county equivalents (parishes in Louisiana, boroughs in Alaska and independent cities in Virginia). One item on my personal bucket list is to visit every single county. I have currently been to 2444 counties - about 78%.

This thread is to inform gas buddies about the US counties and provide a forum for others to comment on or to post about these counties.
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NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 1, 2015 3:51:41 AM

ə one more piece of info about polk co which i omitted: i first drove there in jul 1981, but my first time biking there was much earlier, around 1962.

the new one:
poweshiek county lies in eastern iowa. to its northeast is benton, east iowa, southeast keokuk, south mahaska, southwest marion, west jasper, and northwest marshall. the seat is montezuma, largest city grinnell, pop. 18914 (almost half in grinnell, under 10% in montezuma), and name comes from chief poweshiek of the fox tribe. it was created feb 1843, from mesquakie lands.
the area is 586.17 mi²/1518 km² with 1.14/3 thereof water.
i first drove therein in jun 1983, and biked in it nov 2013.
we have reached the end of counties beginning with the sixteenth letter, and as there are none starting with the seventeenth (there are very few counties in the country beginning with q!), we move to the eighteenth letter for the next one.

to go there, we return to des moines via i-80, get on i-35 south, exit on ia-2, and go west until we reach kellerton. we can stop there or continue to mount ayr. ə
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 31, 2015 2:10:03 PM

ə well, i had hoped to get this one done, but was too tired at the time. ☹
more on polk co:
located in central iowa at the southern terminus of ia-141 and the intersection of interstates 35 (transcontinental n-s), 80 (transcontinental e-w), and 235 (which runs through the city while the other two co-brand around it), it has marshall to its northeast, but they do not touch. jasper is to the east, marion southeast, madison southwest, dallas west, and boone northwest. created in jan 1846, the county contains the confluence of the raccoon into the des moines river in des moines. the eponym is james knox polk, the eleventh president. area is 591.9 mi²/1533 km², with 22.55/58 of it water, most of that being saylorville lake, a federal flood-control project.
not only is polk the most populous county in the state, it also boasts the most cities of over ten thousand population. des moines, of course, with just under 200000, is the largest, but clive and west des moines (west), urbandale (northwest), ankeny and johnston (north), and altoona (northeast) , all of which except ankeny abut the seat, and that city soon will touch the seat’s border if it keeps expanding southward. the south city limit of des moines is also the county line, which explains why there are no suburbs to the south. wdm, clive, and urbandale all extend into dallas co.
mitchellville, a town in the eastern part of the county, contains the state prison for women.
polk co bore the brunt of a devastating flood in 1993 that not only caused enormous destruction, but also indundated the des moines water treatment plant which is located near the raccoon river. that body crested above the dike that separates the water treatment facility from it, flooding the latter, and rendering all suburbs but west des moines, which has its own water supply, without clean water for almost two weeks.
the capital was established in des moines (from iowa city) in 1857.
i could tell a lot more about this county, since it is my home (i live in capitol east, just east of the state capitol building), but will get on to the next one.
to go there, we get on i-235 (if that is closer, to its western terminus, staying on i-80) or i-(35/)80 (if 235 would be out of the way) and go west to the last county before entering the state to the west.

the new one:
pottawottamie county is in western iowa, and borders the state to the west on the missouri river. harrison lies to its north, cass east, montgomery southeast, and mills south. named for the pottawottamie tribe (though there is some discrepancy in the spelling as two other counties, one in kansas and the other in oklahoma, have the same name but each spelled differently), its seat is council bluffs, creation date feb 1847 (just after statehood), and pop. 93158 with more than half of those in the seat.
interestingly enough, this county hosts the only part of iowa which lies west of the big muddy. the river changed its course, and the city of omaha then claimed carter lake as part of itself. iowa fought this, and won, so it is possible to drive into iowa from nebraska (and back into the latter) without crossing the river, but no direct bridge exists to link the two. carter lake also contains the shortest highway in the state, ia-165.
pottawottamie co also is home to the intersection of interstates 80 and 29 (n-s from kansas city to canada), plus the children of the former, 480 and 680, both of which go into omaha.
the county’s area is 959.94/2486 with 5.68/15 thereof water with most of that being the big muddy itself. it thus is second largest in area.

to reach the next county in the list, we get on either i-80 or 680 (whichever is closer; take the latter eb to 80; if in the far southern part, i-29 provides the access to i-80) and continue east past jasper co. grinnell (exit 182) makes a good stopping point. ə

[Edited by: NakedDriver at 3/31/2015 2:13:30 PM EST]
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 31, 2015 2:56:22 AM

Polk County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 430,640, making it the most populous county in Iowa. The county seat is Des Moines, which is also the capital city of Iowa.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 30, 2015 1:15:09 PM

ə sorry, these past several days have been super-busy!

more on palo alto co: my source gives 9421 as the pop. but what’s a few people among friends? ☻ it was created from kossuth co in jan 1851. it has emmet to the north, kossuth east, humboldt southeast, buena vista southwest, clay west, and dickinson northwest. fewer than half its population reside in emmetsburg. the area is 569.4 mi²/1475 km² of which 5.57/14 is water.
my first trip there was nov 2005; it was the last county of the state i drove in. clay was the one prior to that.
to get to plymouth co from here, go south on ia-4 to ia-3, then west.

more on plymouth co: another created in 1851, it lies on the western edge of iowa and borders the state to the northwest, has o’brien to the northeast, cherokee east, and ida southeast. its name origin is obviously from the landing place of the pilgrims in 1620. fewer than half the people are in le mars. its area is 839.96/2238 with 0.39/1 thereof water.
i first drove in it jul 2005 so it was also one of the last ones i acquired as that expedition netted almost all in the northwest sector of the state.
to reach the next one on the list, we get back on ia-3 and go east.

the new one:
pocahontas county lies in northwest iowa, also created jan 1851. to the north we find palo alto, northeast kossuth, east humboldt, south calhoun, southwest sac, west buena vista, and northwest clay. the name is from the native american woman, and the seat is the same. pop. is 7310 with under a quarter in the seat. area is 579.13/1500 with 1.42/4 thereof water.
a large statue representation of the indian princess stands near the intersection of ia-3 and ia-4 in pocahontas.
the next one on the list can be driven to via ia-4 to ia-141 to that road’s southern terminus.
i will try to post that tomorrow. ə
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 30, 2015 1:51:15 AM

Plymouth County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 24,986. The county seat is Le Mars.
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 26, 2015 11:50:51 PM

Palo Alto County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 10,147. The county seat is Emmetsburg. It is named for the first battlefield victory in the Mexican-American War.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 26, 2015 2:25:48 AM

ə more on osceola co: on the northern border, it is half of only the second adjacent pair both geographically and alphabetically. dickinson lies to the east, clay southeast, o’brien south, and lyon west. it was created jan 1851, and has area 399.48 mi²/1035 km² of which 0.71/2 is water. it is most noted for the highest point in iowa, hawkeye point, roughly half a km above sea level.
fewer than half the county population reside in sibley.
i first drove through this county in jul 2005.
we go south to the opposite border on u-59 to reach the next county.

page county is in southwest iowa, and borders the state to the south.
north is montgomery, northeast adams, west fremont, and northwest mills. its seat is clarinda, creation date is feb 1847, and pop. 15932. eponym is john page, an officer killed in the mexican-american war at the battle of palo alto. clarinda and shenandoah comprise two-thirds of the county population; the former also contains a state prison. the area is 535/1386 of which half a mi² or one km² is water.
my first traversal of this was jan 1999.
federal highway 71 passes through page co; we get on that and travel north to u-18 and east to reach the next one. ə
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 26, 2015 1:02:09 AM

Osceola County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 6,462. The county seat is Sibley, named for H. H. Sibley of Minnesota. It is named for Seminole war chief Osceola.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 25, 2015 12:22:11 PM

ə yes, i try to post additional information on counties i missed, plus the newest one.

more on muscatine co: it has cedar to its north, louisa south, and johnson northwest. just over half the population resides in the seat. it was established in 1836 barely before statehood, and name origin is uncertain but believed to derive from the mascouten tribe of the potawatomies with possible meaning “burning island”. the area is 449.07 mi²/1163 km² with 10.4/27 thereof water, of which the vast majority is the big river.
i first drove there in jun 2004.
we skip the next letter as there are no counties in iowa starting therewith, and travel far northwest for the next one. take ia-38 back to i-80 to i-380 and that to u-20, go west to u-59, and proceed north therefrom to get to it.

o’brien county is in northwest iowa. its seat is primghar, pop. 14398, and the eponym william o’brien, an irish revolutionary. dickinson lies to its northeast, clay east, buena vista southeast, and lyon northwest. primghar is a small town, whose name was derived from the names of eight people who were instrumental in plotting it. the county was established in jan 1851, on the day nearly half of the counties of the state were created.
county area is 573.25/1485, and of that, only .17/<1 is water.
i first drove there in nov 2005, in a trip which saw me complete the last three of iowa’s counties; this was the first of those three.

we go one north for the next county; we are now almost ¾ of the way through iowa. ə

[Edited by: NakedDriver at 3/25/2015 12:25:30 PM EST]
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 25, 2015 12:19:26 AM

Glad to see you back NakedDriver - didn't notice you - better pay better attention.

Muscatine County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 42,745. The county seat is Muscatine. The southeastern border is formed by the Mississippi River.
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 25, 2015 12:16:40 AM

Montgomery County is a county located in the southwestern area of the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 10,740. Its population has declined since a peak in 1900, since urbanization and decline of family farms. The county seat is Red Oak. The county was founded by European-American migrants from eastern areas in 1851. It was named in honor of Richard Montgomery, an American Revolutionary War general killed in 1775 while trying to capture Quebec City, Canada.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2015 2:15:58 PM

ə well, mitchell was the 66th one. ☺
i was in cedar rapids on sat. for chess, and was too tired sun. and mon. to post here.

more on monona co: the loess hills run through this and several others on the western border. its name origin is uncertain, possibly native american meaning “peaceful valley”
on the missouri river, the county has ida northeast, crawford east, and harrison south. oddly enough, while it is in the fifth tier, u-30, which goes through every other one in that tier, does not enter this one as it turns southwest in crawford co. the area is 698.85 mi²/1810 km² of which 5.73/15 is water, naturally the majority thereof being the big muddy itself.
i first drove there in may 2001 while returning from california and going through sd.
to reach the next one, we drive south on i-29, take i-680 east and merge onto i-80, run that to i-35, and take that to ia-5 through marion co.

more on monroe co: in southeast iowa, it has mahaska to the north-northeast, davis southeast, appanoose south, lucas west, and marion north-northwest. the eponym is former president james monroe, and it was created in 1843. its area is 434.11/1124 with water comprising 0.7/2 thereof. my first visit to it was in may 1992 that i never have spent much time there.
federal highway 34 traverses this county e-w. if we drive west on that road, we will arrive at the next one on the list, in southwest iowa.

montgomery county, with seat red oak, is, as mentioned above, in the southwest part of the state. it has cass to the north-northeast, adams east, fremont southwest, and mills to its west. named for richard montgomery, a general in the american revolution, it is home to 10740 people with a slight majority of them in the seat, and was created jan 1851.
its area is 424.81/1100, 0.93/2 water. i first drove there jun 2004.
besides u-34, u-71 traverses this one n-s. if we get on that going north and hit ia-92 eastbound, and stay on it until we reach the eastern border of the state, we will arrive in the next county. a slightly longer but faster route is to continue north to i-80 and go east until we hit ia-38, and exit on that going east (or south whichever is appropriate; i fail to recall if that is considered an e-w or n-s highway as it runs nw-se).
that county is the last beginning with em. ə
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 23, 2015 10:43:07 PM

Monroe County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 7,970. The county seat is Albia.
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 21, 2015 2:45:50 AM

Wow, 2/3. Iowa is a bigger state than most people realize.

Monona County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 9,243. The county seat is Onawa. And I've been through this county more than once as it is located on I-29.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 20, 2015 1:45:37 AM

ə oops! we collided there! so i’ll enter the next one.

mitchell county borders the state to the north. with seat osage, it also was formed in 1851, is named after the irish revolutionary john mitchel, and has pop. 10576. howard is to its east, chickasaw southeast, floyd south, and cerro gordo southwest. area is 469.4 mi²/1216 km² of which 0.47/1 is water.
i first drove there in mar 2005.
we now have done two-thirds of the counties in iowa!

the next county is on the missouri. if we followed the path i recommended to get here from the previous one, we will return to it on i-29. ə
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 20, 2015 1:33:00 AM

ə mills county, on the missouri river north of fremont co, is our next stop. named for frederick mills, a major killed in the mexican-american war, with seat glenwood, it was created in 1851 and is home to 15059 people. fremont is the only bordering county we have seen so far.
area is 441 mi²/1442 km² (the entry rounds off the square mileage too) with 3.2/8 water.
i first drove there jul 1995.

the next county is on the northern border, and no direct route thereto exists. best is probably i-29 to us-75 to ia-9 and east a fair distance. ə
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 20, 2015 1:31:13 AM

Mills County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 15,059. The county seat is Glenwood. The county was formed in 1851 and named for Major Frederick Mills of Burlington, Iowa who was killed at the Battle of Churubusco during the Mexican-American War.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 19, 2015 12:19:20 PM

ə following the road mentioned previously lands us in marshall county, and smack-dab in its seat, marshalltown. the county is located in central iowa; in fact, it contains the town of state center, accepted as the geographic center of iowa. the eponym is former chief supreme court justice john marshall. it was established jan. 1846, is populated by 40648 residents (more than half of whom live in the seat), and touches the following counties we have seen before: grundy to the north-northeast, jasper south, and hardin north-northwest. area is 573.02 mi²/1484 km², with 0.7/2 of that water. a good portion of that water area is the iowa river.
marshalltown is home to the lennox® corporation, which manufactures furnaces mostly for home use.
i used to drive there frequently for chess events. my first driving to it was in 1983, not sure if it was summer or fall. i have biked through it also, coming from the east and going home, in nov 2013.

we return almost to the southwest corner of the state, north of fremont, for the next county. ə
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 18, 2015 2:05:37 PM

ə yes, i forgot about mr. wayne. i have seen his birthplace, a very small house in winterset.

more on mahaska co:
in southeast iowa, it was named for chief mahaska (“white cloud”) of the iowa tribe, and founded in 1843 out of fox and sac lands. oskaloosa’s name origin is not certain but believed to come from a creek princess, but there is debate as to the translation. keokuk co lies to the east, and jasper northwest. its northeast corner is not far from the southwest corner of iowa co. the area is 573.4 mi²/1485 km² with 2.53/7 thereof water. i first drove there in either late summer or early fall 1991.
one county west is our next destination.

marion county is in south-central iowa. jasper is to its north, mahaska east, and lucas southwest. it thus is unusual in that it shares a border (not just a corner) with a county that is adjacent to it in the alphabet as well. (there is one other such pair in iowa.) pop. is 33309, seat knoxville (known for its race track), and eponym francis marion, a south carolina general in the american revolution. the dutch community of pella, famous for tulip time, is in this county. area is 570.53/1478, with 16.32/42 (most of that in lake red rock, a federal flood-control project) water.
i am unsure of whether i drove in this or the previous one first, but the time of initial drive was the same. i also biked in it on the des moines to knoxville leg of ragbrai® 2013.
iowa highway 14 runs through marion co. if we drive north on that, through jasper, we will reach the next one to discuss. ə
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 16, 2015 11:00:48 PM

Mahaska County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 22,335. The county seat is Oskaloosa.
JCS319
Champion Author Tacoma

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Message Posted: Mar 15, 2015 9:53:48 PM

Madison County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 15,679. The county seat is Winterset.

Madison County is famous for being the county where John Wayne was born, and for a number of covered bridges. These bridges were featured in the 1992 book, 1995 movie, and 2014 musical The Bridges of Madison County.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 15, 2015 6:29:24 PM

ə madison county, created almost a year before statehood in jan. 1846, lies in south-central iowa. dallas is to its north, lucas (but not touching) to its southeast, clarke south-southeast, adair west, and guthrie northwest thereof. its seat is winterset, pop. 15679, and eponym former president james madison. the area is 562 mi²/1456 km² (they do not show the decimals for this one’s square mileage) with 1.2/3 thereof water.
most of iowa’s famous covered bridges, and the only tunnel in the state, are in this county.
as interstate 80 passes through the northwest corner of this, i first drove in it in jul 1981. later, i traversed it on the other highways that run through it.
the next one lies due east of it. ə

[Edited by: NakedDriver at 3/15/2015 6:33:44 PM EST]
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 14, 2015 12:31:51 PM

ə more on lucas co: appanoose lies to its southeast, decatur southwest, and clarke west. two other nearby counties (one of which does not touch it) will be uncovered soon, and a third not much after that.
stephens state forest is mostly in lucas county.
chariton is the original headquarters for the hy-vee® grocery chain. the county area is 434.17 mi²/1124 km², with 3.63/9 of that water. as there is no obvious large body of water there, i’m unsure as to the nature of that wet region. a u. s. highway, 65, runs through the county, and that, including the town of lucas, is the path taken to visit my parents’ graves in missouri. i first drove in the county in may 1992.
the next county on our list is way north and west.

lyon co forms the northwesternmost corner of iowa, bordering the states to the north and northwest. it is named for gen. nathaniel lyon, the first union general killed in the war between the states; its name was changed from the original buncombe co. the seat is rock rapids, pop. 11581, and it was established in 1851. none of the three iowa counties adjacent to it have been discussed yet.
the area is 587.63/1522, with 0.13/<1 water.
my first time driving therein was jul 2005.
we return to central ia, near where we left to come here, for the next one. ə
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 14, 2015 3:43:45 AM

Lucas County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 8,898. The county seat is Chariton. The county was formed in 1846 and was named for Robert Lucas, a Governor of the Territory.
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 14, 2015 3:42:28 AM

Louisa County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 11,387. The county seat is Wapello.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 13, 2015 11:57:36 AM

ə more on linn co: cedar rapids is home to one of the largest quaker oats® factories in the country, and suffered a devastating flood in 2008. formerly, marion, its sister city to the northeast, was the seat, but it was decided by election to move it just under a century ago.
the county was created before statehood.
we finally have reached a county (not on the edge of the state) which is surrounded by ones we have seen already! north-northwest is buchanan, north-northeast is delaware, east is jones, southeast cedar, south johnson, southwest iowa, and west benton, all in the eastern section of iowa.
the area is 724.55 mi²/1877 km², with 7.1/18 water. a lot of that water area is coralville lake, a federal project which lies in both linn and johnson counties. i first drove there in fall 1983.
we travel south-southeast for the next one.
louisa county lies in southeast iowa, on the mississippi river. it borders the state to the east, and d. m. to the southeast and henry to the southwest. the population is 11387, and the eponym is uncertain: either louisa massey, a woman who achieved notoriety by avenging the death of her brother, or the virginia county of the same name. the “i” is long, and is accented.
wapello (which is a fair distance from wapello co!) is the seat of louisa county, and the region was organized from d. m. co in 1836.
the area is 417.64/1082, with water comprising 15.73/41, and the vast majority of that is the big river itself.
my first driving there was in aug 2004.
the county that follows is almost due west and one tier south from louisa, in the south-central region. ə
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 12, 2015 10:44:39 PM

Linn County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 211,226, making it the second-most populous county in Iowa. The county seat is Cedar Rapids. Linn county is named in honor of Senator Lewis Linn of Missouri.
NakedDriver
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Mar 12, 2015 2:14:58 PM

ə lee county, named not for the confederate leader but the businessman william lee of the new york land company who sold the first tract of land in it (sources differ as to the origin), was established in 1836 (before statehood!) and lies in the southeasternmost corner of iowa, including the “tooth” where the des moines river forms a natural boundary with the state to the south. it is the only iowa county to possess two county seats: fort madison and keokuk, done because of the elongated shape of the county (keokuk was given seat status later due to disagreements over court jurisdiction). its population is 35862. henry co is its northern neighbor, and d. m. lies to its northeast; jefferson is nearby to the northwest but does not touch it. the area is 538.77 mi²/1695 km² with 21.37/55 thereof water, most of which is the part of the mississippi containing the state line. like anamosa, fort madison contains a maximum-security prison.
highway 218 (a peculiarly-designated u. s. highway which travels north-south but caries an even number; it probably should have been made a child of 61 instead) has its southern terminus at keokuk. if we travel north on that road, we will come to the next county on the list. ə
NakedDriver
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Message Posted: Mar 11, 2015 1:55:47 AM

ə yes, the nearly naked mile is a one- (actually about eight-tenths-) mile run done as a clothing drive. this year, it was about freezing with sunshine; all i wore was shorts and cap. all the others who ran shirtless had covered feet.
more on jones co: anamosa has the distinction of having the correctional facility that is considered to house the worst offenders. the county has delaware to the north-northwest, dubuque to the north-northeast, jackson to the east, clinton to the southeast, and cedar to the south. it barely misses touching johnson co. the area is 576.7 mi²/1494 km² with 1.39/4 water. i first drove through it in dec 2001.
more on keokuk co: note that this is not near the city of keokuk! sigourney is not pronounced like the actress; the last two syllables sound like “gurney” and the accent is on the first one. iowa co is to its north, and jefferson to its south-southeast. its eponym is chief keokuk of the sac tribe. its area is 579.94/1602 with .75/2 thereof water. i first drove there in jun 2004.
the county following keokuk lies a fair distance to the northwest.
kossuth county borders the state to the north. it is one of two (that i know of) which extends into two tiers; when you look at it on the map, it appears as a double county. it is named for lajos kossuth, a hungarian revolutionary. the last syllable is accented, and rhymes with “truth”. its seat is algona. and pop. 15543. hancock lies east of its southern half, humboldt south, and emmet west of its northern half. area is 974.39/2524 (largest in the state) with 1.38/4 thereof water. i first drove there in jul 2005.
to reach the following one on the list, we must go southeast. ə
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 10, 2015 10:41:49 PM

Keokuk County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 10,511. The county seat is Sigourney.
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 9, 2015 10:22:09 PM

nearly naked huh? :)

Jones County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 20,638. The county seat is Anamosa. The county was founded in 1837 and named after George Wallace Jones, a United States Senator and member of Congress.
NakedDriver
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ə more on jasper co: the area is 732.93 mi²/1898 km² with 2.94/8 thereof being water. it is interesting in other ways: newton and jasper often appear together, either as adjacent counties or one the seat of the other. arkansas, for example, has seat jasper in newton co. that was because john newton, a minor figure in the revolutionary war, was heroized in a poem along with jasper. in addition, not one of the counties surrounding it has been discussed yet as all occur later in the alphabet! this last happened with clarke co, though d. m. co exhibits this trait also but is not counted because it borders another state. i first drove there in jul 1981.
more on jefferson co: fairfield is home to maharishi international university, formerly the defunct parsons college. this city also names almost all of its older east-west streets after former presidents. not far away is the recently-established community of vedic city, which is laid out to promote harmony between people and structures. the county area is 436.72/1331 with 1.38/4 water; i first drove there in nov 1997.
we go due north for the next one:
johnson county, seat iowa city, is the next one in the alphabet. it lies in eastern iowa, with cedar to the east, iowa west, and benton northwest. iowa city was the original capital of the iowa territory, and the former capitol building, now a museum on the university of iowa campus, is still there to see. the 2010 pop. is 130882, about half of which live in iowa city and a significant portion of the rest in coralville, a suburb thereof. university heights is another suburb, more like an island. its name comes from robert johnson, an officer in the war of 1812, later a senator from kentucky, and also a vice president. its area is 623.35/1614 of which 8.87/23 is water. i first drove there in jun 1983, and was last there yesterday to participate in the nearly naked mile run. ə

[Edited by: NakedDriver at 3/8/2015 11:56:11 PM EST]
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 7, 2015 2:59:49 AM

Jefferson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 16,843. The county seat is Fairfield. The county was formed on January 21, 1839 and named after President Thomas Jefferson.
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Message Posted: Mar 4, 2015 11:48:36 PM

Jasper County is a county located in the US state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 36,842. The county seat is Newton. The county was organized in 1846 and is named after Sergeant William Jasper, a Revolutionary War hero.

NakedDriver
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ə more on ida co:
my source gives its eponym as mount ida, in greece. a former governor of iowa, and later u. s. senator, harold huhges, was from ida grove.
its area is 432.23 mi²/1119 km², of which 0.52.1 is water. it lies in northwest iowa. cherokee co is north of it, buena vista northeast, carroll southeast, and crawford south. i first drove in it in jul 2005.
more on iowa co: while it bears the same name as the state, it is named for the river, which in turn was named for the iowa(y) tribe.
it is in east-central iowa, due south of benton co. the area is 587.35/1521 of which 0.9/2 is water. i first drove there in jul 1983,
in 1991 i had to fight a traffic citation in marengo, and i was happy to point out to all that i knew when the courthouse was built, which they did not!
we go farther east for the next new county.
jackson co is in far eastern iowa. the seat is maquoketa, and pop. 19348. former president andrew jackson lent his name to it. due to the shape of the state, it borders dubuque to the north, the state to the east, and clinton south. its closest but nonadjacent southwest neighbor is cedar, and northwest, though again not touching, is delaware. its area is 649.75/1683, with 13.66/35 (most of that the mississippi) being water. i picked it up in nov 2004.
for the next county, we go almost due west, and will be halfway through when we get there. ə

[Edited by: NakedDriver at 3/4/2015 1:48:40 AM EST]
JCS319
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Message Posted: Mar 2, 2015 11:20:00 PM

Iowa County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 16,355. The county seat is Marengo.

Iowa County is one of seven counties in the United States to share the same name as the state they are located in. The other six counties are Arkansas County, Hawaii County, Idaho County, New York County, Oklahoma County, and Utah County.
JCS319
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Welcome back NakedDriver.

Ida County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 7,089. The county seat is Ida Grove. The county was formed on January 15, 1851. It was probably named after Ida Smith, the first child of European immigrants to be born in this region.
NakedDriver
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ə sorry for the lapse in posting here!
more on henry co: it lies in se ia, and there is some dispute as to whether its eponym is henry dodge, governor of the wisconsin territory, or james doughtery henry, an general in the black hawk war. the area is 436.68 mi²/1131 km² of which 2.24/6 is water. of the ones we have seen so far, it borders on only one: d. m. to its east. i first drove in it jul 1992.
more on howard co: in the northernmost tier, this county in ne ia borders fayette to its southeast, chickasaw south, and floyd southwest. the area is 473.36/1227 of which 0.36/1 is water. i first drove there in mar 2005.
the next county in our trip to visit all of them is humboldt, in north-central iowa (third tier). it was the last of the 99 to achieve county status, though it had been created and dissolved before until its borders were established in their present form in 1857. the seat is dakota city, which is rather odd since that town abuts the much larger city of humboldt. the eponym is alexander von humboldt, a german scientist. in 2010, 9815 people were recorded as residing therein, almost half of those in humboldt (4690) and 843 in dakota city. hancock co is to its northeast, hamilton southeast, and calhoun southwest. the area is 435.73/1129, of which 1.31/3 is water.
my first trip there was jul 2005.
we have reached the end of counties beginning with the eighth letter. we must use the ninth to begin the next pair. ə
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Howard County is a county located in the US state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 9,566. The county seat is Cresco. The county was founded in 1851 and named after General Tilghman Ashurst Howard, a Representative of Indiana.
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Henry County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 20,145. The county seat is Mount Pleasant. The county was named for General Henry Dodge, governor of Wisconsin Territory.
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Hardin County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 17,534. The county seat is Eldora. The county was named in honor of Col. John J. Hardin, of Illinois, who was killed in the Mexican–American War.
NakedDriver
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Message Posted: Feb 23, 2015 6:56:13 PM

ə we move to the far west.
harrison county, on the missouri river, has seat logan. carroll co is to its northeast. the eponym is our ninth president, william henry harrison, who died very shortly after inauguration, and population is 14928.
a very scenic part of the state, the loess hills, go through this and several other counties on the western border.
its area 700.93 mi²/1815 km² with 4.20/11 water, most of which is the part that extends into the missouri river.
harrison is the 43rd county, alphabetically, so we are getting close to the halfway point. ə
NakedDriver
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ə more on hancock co:
john hancock was of course also noted for his signature on the declaration of independence, in a large enough script that the king would not need to put on his spectacles to read it, or so the story goes.
i first drove in it in nov 2004. its area is 573.14 mi²/1484 km², of which 2.03/5 is water.
cerro gordo lies due east thereof, and franklin southeast.
we move south a little for the next one.
hardin co is in north-central (the north part is arbitrary) iowa. named for john hardin, a soldier of note in the black hawk war, its seat is eldora, and pop. 17534. the area is 569.93/1476, of which 0.68/2 is water. it is surrounded by several we have seen before: franklin to the north, butler northeast, grundy east, and hamilton west.
i first drove in it (not certain) in mar 1985. ə
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Hancock County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 11,341. The county seat is Garner. The county was founded on January 15, 1851 and named in honor of John Hancock, a leader of the Continental Congress during the American Revolution.
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Hamilton County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 15,673. The county seat is Webster City. The county was named in honor of William W. Hamilton, who served as President of the Iowa State Senate.
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ə guthrie co is surrounded almost entirely by counties we have discussed! greene is north of it, boone northeast, dallas east, adair south, cass southwest, audubon west, and carroll northwest. only the one southeast of it has not been listed yet. its area is 593 mi²/1536 km² with 2.5/6 thereof water. (interesting that they round off the miles as well as the km for this one!)
my first visit there was in 1986, unknown month.
and we end the counties that begin with gee.
hamilton county is in north-central iowa, named for william hamilton, former president of the iowa senate, contains 15673 people and has seat webster city. it touches franklin to the northeast and boone to the southwest.
the area is 577.44/1496 with 0.76/2 water.
this was another i first drove in in mar 1985. ə
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Guthrie County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 10,954. The county seat is Guthrie Center. The county was formed on January 15, 1851 and named after Captain Edwin B. Guthrie, who had died in the Mexican–American War.
NakedDriver
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ə a bit more about greene co:
nathaniel greene was a revolutionary war hero.
it is in central ia. boone county lies east thereof, dallas southeast, audubon southwest, carroll west, and calhoun north-northwest. the area is 571.13 mi²/1479 km², with 2.72/7 water. my first trip there was mar. 1985.
on to grundy co!
this county is in northeast iowa. the seat is grundy center, pop. 12453, and the eponym felix grundy, a u. s. senator from tn. butler co is to its north, bremer northeast, black hawk east, and franklin northwest. area is 502.55/1302 with .03/<1 water. my first visit to it was in 1986, unknown month. ə
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Greene County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 9,336. The county seat is Jefferson. The county is named in honor of General Nathanael Greene.
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Message Posted: Feb 18, 2015 1:45:42 AM

Fremont County is a county located in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 7,441. The county seat is Sidney. The county was formed in 1847 and named for the military officer John C. Fremont.
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ə fremont county is in the southwesternmost corner of iowa. its seat is sidney, 2010 population is 7441, and it is named for john fremont, an officer in the mexican-american war. the area is 516.76 mi²/1338 km², with 5.68/15 water, most of which is the part of the missouri river it extends into to reach the state to the west.
my first trip into it was jul 1995.
that ends the counties beginning with ef. ə
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