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Mount Ayr, Iowa

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P.E.O. Float

Ladies' Float Entry

Ringgold Indians

Vicki, Ellen &

Horse Hitches

Kiddie Car

Narcissus Club

Car Float

Mt. Ayr Oil Co.

Car Entry

Willey's Htg. Plbg.

Roe Implement

MAIN Motors

Weldon, John & Elma

Benton, Iowa


  Photographs taken by Pat (MAIN) PRENTIS, 1955
Submission by Julie Watts, June of 2010

Mount Ayr Record-News
Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa
Thursday, July 14, 2005

County's centennial was bigger bash
than 150th year observance

By Britt Fell

The sesquicentennial celebration is almost here!

At this time fifty years ago, the people of Ringgold county were preparing to celebrate the centennial. Although both events pay homage to the past, the way it is is celebrated will have changed somewhat.

The centennial party in 1955 lasted five days, every evening starting off with a performance by nationally renowed singer Oscar Davis. Young women of the county were nominated for queen and the title of "Miss Ringgold County" and waited in anticipation for the night when the results would be announced.

Miss Ringgold County Contestants, 1955

The winner was Ms. Carolyn LUNGREN. In addition to the crown and title, she won a trip for two to Orlando, FL. There were ten princesses in her court. They included Suzanne TODD, Janelle TAYLOR, Myrtle SERVIR, Jeannette RAUCH, Mari REES, Mary Sue PRITCHARD, Shirley POWELL, Mary PINE, Mildred JONES and Delores GRAVETT.

Another event of the centennial aniversary was a beard contest. Three different titles were awarded in this category. The longest beard was won by Carrol MOTSINGER whose beard was four and a half inches long. Hurley POWELL won the title of worst-looking beard and Harry GUNTER was awarded the title of fanciest beard.

Many members of the community participated in the performance "Backward Glances" which was a series of short skits about the role that Iowa and Ringgold county played in various major historical events.

Those that were interested in traditional American clothing designs made replicas of garments from a certain era which were then modeled and judged. Over 7,000 people watched the pageant. The courthouse hosted the centennial tea. Cake and punch were also served followed by singing and a performance by the Mount Ayr band.

The grand finale was a parade that featured antique cars, farm machinery, floats from different organizations and livestock. Surprisingly, it was estimated that 20,000 people watched the parade's progress through Mount Ayr.

~ ~ ~ ~

Mount Ayr Record-News
Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa
Thursday, December 01, 1955

Carolyn LUNGREN of Redding is in Miami, FL this week on a trip she won as the Ringgold County Centennial Queen. Carolyn's and her mother's transportation for the trip is being paid by the Ringgold County Centennial Committee. Her father, Clifford LUNGREN, also accompanied her to Miami.

Transcriptions by Sharon R. Becker, November of 2012





 Shirley Powell, pictured at right, was one of the Ringgold County Centennial Queen Candidates. Shirley, who was from Redding, later married Arvid Woollums. Shirley's sister is Ruth (Powell) Cavender of Ruth's Cafe' fame.

Photograph courtesy of Mike Avitt, October of 2014







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