(DES MOINES) – Gov. Kim Reynolds and Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg introduced the “Iowa History 101” mobile museum to fairgoers during the Iowa State Fair Tuesday morning.
The mobile museum will be parked at the fairgrounds until Friday, August 18. So far, it has visited 24 of Iowa’s 99 counties and attracted more than 11,000 visitors statewide. The State Historical Society of Iowa filled the vehicle with artifacts and sent it on the road earlier this year. The goal is to visit all 99 counties over the next three years.
“All Iowans should walk through the mobile museum and see some of the highlights,” Gov. Reynolds said. “A patch from astronaut Peggy Whitson’s space suit, a jersey from Lynne Lorenzen’s glory days in six-on-six basketball and one of my personal favorites, the pen Gov. Harding used to sign the 19th Amendment in 1919. Iowans are proud of our history, and this mobile museum is one of the best ways to share it with folks in every corner of the state.”
“Most students never really dig into Iowa history,” Lt. Gov. Gregg said. “It’s easy to assume that it doesn’t matter, or that it isn’t very exciting, or that Iowans haven’t really accomplished that much. But that’s not true. And I’m happy to report that’s changing, thanks to the combined efforts of the Iowa Department of Education and the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs.”
The State Board of Education adopted new social studies standards in May. The new standards will require educators to teach Iowa history at all grade levels by 2020.
Last week, the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs unveiled a free new online resource for teachers and students. The website makes digital versions of historic documents, photos and multimedia recordings from the Library of Congress and the State Historical Society of Iowa easily accessible to the public. Funding for the project came from a Library of Congress grant.