We passed into Iowa yesterday afternoon, and we find ourselves in the Mississippi River port city of Dubuque. I don't think either of us has ever been to Dubuque before, although I used to have family in Des Moines. I'm also aware of having extended family in the state, although I'd be hard pressed to tell you where they live...Ames, I think. The Wise family...maybe you know them.
Wanda left this comment: You are about 30 miles south of me right now. Good black dirt and lots of cornfields and you know you are in Illinois.I responded: The corn hasn't been harvested and the stalks are all dried up. Must have been a bad year for corn.To which Wanda responded: The corn is harvested after the corn stalks are totally dry. Harvesting will be starting soon and go all the way through November for the farmers with lots of fields. I think it turned out to be an average year for yield with a slow start and dry conditions and then average rain after that.Me: Interesting. I’m thinking this corn will become canned or frozen corn without cobs. When I see whole corn cobs in the grocery store, they are green.Wanda: This is field corn for feed for animals. Sweet corn is done for the year.
In 1870, Alfred Hurst came to the area, having heard of the limestone formations along the banks of the Maquoketa River. He then found what he considered the best quality limestone rock to produce the whitest, purest, and most adhesive lime in the marketplace. He constructed a small pot kiln and started producing powder lime. He then erected the first draw kiln in 1871, with the other 3 following soon after. In the 1st year, production reached 100 barrels a week, with a total of 3200 barrels for the year. At the company’s peak, the kilns would produce 8000 barrels of lime a day!