| The National Society Daughters of the
American Revolution (NSDAR or DAR) is a
non-profit, non-political patriotic women's
service organization. The Open Fire Chapter
NSDAR was organized November 15, 1915, in
Eldora, Iowa. The name Open Fire, suggested by
the Organizing Regent, Mrs. J. D. Newcomer,
was selected from a proposed list for the
sentiment expressed in the following: "Open
Fire-emblematic of comradeship and cheer, Of
early days when brave men knew no fear."
Early settlers sought out the flour mills
operating along Iowa's rivers and streams to
grind their grains for flour for their daily
bread. Such a mill was built on the Iowa River
near Union in 1856 and operated until 1926.
Also located in Long Memorial Park is the
oldest landmark in Hardin County—an Iron
Bridge in use from 1886 to 1919. Both sites
are memorialized on a plaque mounted on a
boulder taken from the old dam that was once
in this area. The marker is located in
southeast Hardin County. From Eldora, take
State Highway 218 southeast to Union. An
inscribed plaque mounted on a boulder marks
the sites in Daisy and Charles Long Memorial
Park east of Union. The plaque was dedicated
by the Open Fire Chapter NSDAR in 1972.
The town of Eldora was named by a woman—Mrs.
Lois Edgerton. In 1971, an inscribed bronze
marker memorializing Mrs. Edgerton and the
pioneers was affixed to a native boulder and
placed on the courthouse grounds by the Open
Fire Chapter NSDAR. The marker is located in
the town of Eldora on the grounds of the
Hardin County Courthouse. The marker is at the
northeast corner of the Courthouse square.
The original land patent dated March 1, 1854,
written on sheepskin, designates 40 acres in
the southeast part of Eldora that was given to
the Hardin County Board of Supervisors by
Colonel S.R. Edgington. The land patent now
hangs in the courthouse rotunda. Colonel
Edgington was born in Ohio, served in the
Mexican War, and moved to Iowa where he
enlisted to serve in the Civil War. A
collection of Colonel Edgington's memorabilia
was presented to the Hardin County Board of
Supervisors along with the original land
patent. The patent was marked by the Open Fire
Chapter NSDAR on October 25, 1971. The marker
is located in Eldora in the Hardin County
courthouse rotunda near the auditor's office.
First Church and
Cemetery in Hardin County
Pleasant Chapel Church and cemetery was one of
the first churches in Pleasant Township. It
was established first in 1853 as the Duke
Cemetery Church and built in 1965. The Open
Fire Chapter NSDAR erected a commemoration
marker on September 19, 1984. The church and
cemetery are located in Hardin County near
Eldora, in Pleasant Township. From Eldora,
take State Highway 175 west about 4 miles.
Turn left (south) on State Highway 299 and
drive until you see a lone country elevator.
This should be what is left of the settlement
of Lawn Hill. It is not marked on the Iowa
map. The church and cemetery are about 1 1/2
miles northwest of the elevator, but it is
best to get directions.
Grave of Eli
Eli Hoover, buried in the Hubbard Cemetery,
was the grandfather of Herbert C. Hoover, 31st
President of the United States. A marker on
Eli Hoover's grave was dedicated by the Open
Fire Chapter NSDAR on June 16, 1990. The
marker is located in southwest Hardin County
where U.S. Highway 65 and State Highway 175
meet at Hubbard, Iowa.