Jefferson County Online
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The State of Iowa
State Historical Society

The following is a chapter from "The History of Jefferson County, Iowa", Pages 193-194, published by the Western Historical Company of Chicago in 1879.



By act of the General Assembly, approved January 28, 1857, a State Historical Society was provided for in connection with the University. At the commencement, an appropriation of $250 was made, to be expended in collecting, embodying, and preserving in an authentic form a library of books, pamphlets, charts, maps, manuscripts, papers, paintings, statuary, and other materials illustrative of the history of Iowa; and with the further object to rescue from oblivion the memory of the early pioneers; to obtain and preserve various accounts of their exploits, perils and hardy adventures; to secure facts and statements relative to the history and genius, and progress and decay of the Indian tribes of Iowa; to exhibit faithfully the antiquities and past and present resources of the State; to aid in the publication of such collections of the Society as shall from time to time be deemed of value and interest; to aid in binding its books, pamphlets, manuscripts and papers, and in defraying other necessary incidental expenses of the Society.

There was appropriated by law to this institution, till (sic) the General Assembly shall otherwise direct, the sum of $500 per annum. The Society is under the management of a Board of Curators, consisting of eighteen persons, nine of whom are appointed by the Governor, and nine elected by the members of the Society. The Curators receive no compensation for their services. The annual meeting is provided for by law, to be held at Iowa City on Monday preceding the last Wednesday in June of each year.

The State Historical Society has published a series of very valuable collections, including history, biography, sketches, reminiscences, etc., with quite a large number of finely engraved portraits of prominent and early settlers, under the title of "Annals of Iowa."

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