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State Historical Society of Iowa
Rivera and Ayala Family Members

Iowa’s People & Places

Journey through 13,000 years of history in this exhibition that features both common and monumental events. American Indian settlements, statehood, court rulings, legislation, immigration and elections all set the course for Iowans and still affect Iowans today. Our history reflects the experiences of many people across the state who shaped, and were affected by, local and national events. Iowa's People & Places invites visitors to explore the stories and artifacts of the earliest people who called this land home as well as more recent Iowans who have helped make Iowa truly unique.


Tour the Exhibit

Exhibit Highlights:

  • Stone tools made by some of the earliest inhabitants of the land that would become Iowa
  • Handcrafted Meskwaki beadwork
  • A loveseat used by Norwegian immigrants in northwest Iowa
  • A medical bag used by Dr. Edward Carter, the first African American graduate from the University of Iowa medical college
  • Artifacts from the life and career of astronaut Peggy Whitson
  • An embroidered story cloth by a Hmong immigrant to Iowa
  • Text is available upon request at the museum's front desk with Spanish translation and Braille transcription of "Iowa's People & Places" exhibit labels

Watch Iowa History 101 Video

In this Iowa History 101 webinar, State Curator Leo Landis highlights stories and artifacts from the exhibition, "Iowa’s People and Places."