So for my birthday, Jami bought us two tickets to a St. Louis Cardinals game. We planned a little vacation that would swing us through the southern two tiers of counties.
- (A) Des Moines
- (B) Oskaloosa
- (C) Ottumwa
- (D) Keosauqua
- (E) Fort Madison
- (F) Keokuk
A total of 192.5 miles and 4 hours and 14 minutes of driving time.
8. Mahaska County Courthouse. Oskaloosa, Iowa.
This was our first challenge. We arrived here early in the afternoon on a Wednesday. There were cars everywhere on the square. That being said, this turned out to be one of my favorite pictures.
9. Wapello County Courthouse. Ottumwa, Iowa.
Wapello County presented another challenge. Again, in the middle of the afternoon, as well as it physical location. The courthouse sits on a hill and there is no good spot to get a great picture. Add to that the overcast skies, and I feared I would be unimpressed with the results.
After the courthouse, we headed to Eldon, Iowa. Home of the American Gothic House. This is the house that Grant Wood used for his most famous painting… you know which one I mean, the old couple with the pitchfork…
10. Van Buren County Courthouse. Keosauqua, Iowa.
This one was weird. We struggled to find it… well, not so much find it, as verify that it was the courthouse. There were no signs anywhere. This simple two story building looked more like a house. The large trees in the lawn (not shown) prevented a panoramic view of the building. I got close with the camera and the resulting image has some quirky perspective changes that I’ve come to really like. It also had the bonus effect of making the building seem much larger than it really is.
11A. Lee County Courthouse (North). Fort Madison, Iowa.
Fort Madison is also home to the Iowa State Penitentiary. Behind the Prison, on a very high bluff overlooking the Mississippi river, you get this view:
11B. Lee County Courthouse (South). Keokuk, Iowa.
This one turned out great. After checking in to a hotel, we headed across the Mississippi into Illinois and drove up the river to Nauvoo. View along the way:
And in downtown Keokuk, the most awesome bar name ever:
The current total: