The Conestoga Chapter is named for the heavy, broad-wheeled covered
freight carrier used extensively during the United States westward
expansion in the 1700s and 1800s.
In 1983, a project of the Conestoga Chapter was to place a marker at
the site of each abandoned town in Tama County. The following
lists the markers that were placed.
Site of Former Columbia
On August 25, 1983, the Conestoga Chapter marked the former location
of Columbia Village. The village was abandoned in the coming of the
railroad to Tama County. The marker is located about a mile
southwest of Tama. Columbia Village was in Columbia Township,
Section 5, and by now may be a part of the town of Tama.
Site of Former Haven
The Tama County town of Haven was laid out in 1854 in what was
thought of as beautiful surrounding country, thickly populated and
predicted to afford sufficient trade to support quite a village.
Unfortunately, the town did not survive and the only building left
is the Haven Community Church, which is still an active part of the
community. The town site was marked by the Conestoga Chapter in 1983
with a white wooden sign with black letters. The former town and the
marker are located southeast of the town of Tama in Richland Township, Section
21. Take U.S. Highway 63 south from Tama and turn east on E 64.
Site of Former Helena
The town of Helena was surveyed and established around 1854 and was
active until 1896. The first store was a general merchandise
store, and later, a shoe shop. Now it is no longer on the map.
It was marked as an abandoned town by the Conestoga Chapter with a
white wooden marker printed in black. You can view the marker
by going southeast of Tama near the town of Chelsea in Richland
Township, Section 10.
Site of Former Union Grove
In 1879, Union Grove was the name of a post office in the southern
part of Spring Creek Township. There was one dry goods store and one
blacksmith shop. The owner of the dry goods store was also the
postmaster, the justice of the peace, and half-owner of the
blacksmith shop. You could almost say this was a one-man town. The
Conestoga Chapter marked the site with a white wooden plaque
lettered in black. To view the plaque, go about 4 miles
northwest of Garwin, Iowa, in western Tama County. It is near a
small lake on the west side of Spring Creek Township, Section 32.
Site of Former
In 1869, the first store was built in Mooreville and the town
survived until 1900. Two blacksmith shops were added, a flour mill,
one physician, a post office, and a few other dwellings. The
buildings no longer exist. The Conestoga Chapter marked the
site in 1983 with a white wooden plaque lettered in black as the
"Former Site of Mooreville." The former site and marker
located on the northeast Tama County line about 5 miles north of
Dysart. From Tama take U.S. Highway 30 east 13 miles. Turn north on
State Highway 21 and drive 14 miles to Dysart. Take County
Road V37 5 miles north. Mooreville was located in Geneseo Township,
Site of Former Irving
Before the site was surveyed and the town established in 1856, one
enterprising man had already built a store and was doing business.
Others joined him and the town did well until 1862. That was the
year the railroad reached Belle Plaine, just a few miles from
Irving. Business started moving to Belle Plaine and Irving limped
along until 1935.
The Conestoga Chapter marked the site of the town in 1983 with a
white sign that states "Former Site of Irving." It was also referred
to as "Town Park" and "Plaza" during its day.
To view the marker and the former town site, from Tama take U.S.
Highway 30 east 13 miles to State Highway 21. Turn south and drive
about 1 1/2 miles. Irving was located in Salt Creek Township,
Site of Former Waltham
Waltham was surveyed and became a busy town site in 1868. It had a
post office, two grocery stores, two dry good stores, two blacksmith
shops, a harness shop, a shoe shop, and a physician. The post office
lasted until 1894. The Conestoga Chapter marked the site in 1983
with a white 16 x 16 inch marker with black lettering stating:
"Former Site of Waltham." To view the former town site and the
marker, from Tama drive east on U.S. Highway 30 to State Highway 21.
Turn north and drive 3 miles to Elberon. Waltham was a short
distance northwest of Elberon in York Township, Section 3.
Site of Former
Monticello was named by one of the town's residents in honor of
President Thomas Jefferson as that was the name Jefferson chose for
his home in Virginia. For several years after Monticello was
established, the town flourished. After Toledo became the county
seat, most residents had moved out of Monticello and into Toledo. In
1983, the Conestoga Chapter marked the site with a white wooden sign
lettered in black that says "Former Site of Monticello." To see the
marker, from Toledo take U.S. Highway 63 north about 3 miles then
turn west and drive 1/2 mile. Monticello was located in Howard
Township, Section 33.
Iowa State Regent
"God, Home, and Country"
“Preserve the Past, Enhance the
Present, Invest in the Future.”
2012 - 2014 State Theme
Hands of Friendship
Working Together to Build Membership
"Be ye strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak, for your work
shall be rewarded."
2 Corinthians 15.7