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5 Fun Facts About October 17 In Iowa History

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1. In 1855, the first train arrived in Cedar Rapids on October 17. The steam engine, known as "The Hawkeye," arrived in the city after traveling from Chicago, Illinois. This marked a significant moment in the history of transportation for Cedar Rapids and the state of Iowa.

2. On October 17, 1876, the town of Boyden was founded. Located in Sioux County, Boyden was named after Dr. William Boyden, an early resident and physician in the area. Today, Boyden is a small but thriving community in northwest Iowa.

3. In 1949, the University of Iowa football team played their first night game at home against the University of Notre Dame on October 17. Though the Hawkeyes lost the game, it was a memorable moment for the team and for Iowa football fans.

4. On October 17, 1979, Iowa Governor Robert Ray declared a state of emergency in the wake of a severe blizzard that hit the state. The storm brought heavy snow and strong winds, causing widespread damage and power outages. The governor's emergency declaration allowed for state and federal resources to be mobilized to help Iowans in need.

5. In 2011, the Iowa National Guard broke ground on a new helicopter hanger at the Waterloo Airport on October 17. The hanger would serve as a home base for the Guard's Blackhawk helicopter unit, allowing them to more easily respond to emergencies and provide assistance throughout the region.
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