1. Iowa became a state: December 16, 1846, marks an important day in Iowa's history, as it was the day the state officially joined the Union. Iowa is the 29th state to become a part of the United States.
2. The first snowmobile patent was issued: On December 16, 1914, Carl Eliason of Sayner, Wisconsin, was granted a patent for his first snowmobile design. Eliason's original machine was called the "Motor Toboggan," and it weighed over 350 pounds.
3. The deadliest train collision in Iowa history: On December 16, 1960, two passenger trains collided head-on near Dike, Iowa, killing 34 people and injuring more than 100 others. The accident, which occurred in heavy fog, was the deadliest train collision in Iowa's history.
4. The Great Iowa Blizzard of 2000: On December 16, 2000, a massive snowstorm hit Iowa, dumping up to 28 inches of snow in some areas. The storm caused widespread power outages, closed roads, and disrupted travel for days.
5. The Iowa Supreme Court struck down a ban on same-sex marriage: On December 16, 2005, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled that the state's ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. This was a landmark decision at the time, and it made Iowa the third state in the country to recognize same-sex marriages.
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