|Anamosa Fair Board
|Mary Kay Kuhfittig has sent in this view of the Anamosa fairgrounds amphtheatre from Souvenir of Anamosa. According to Steve Hanken the first Jones county fair was held at Bowen's Prairie just south of 151 and east of the Bowen's Prairie cemetery. There used to be two maple trees that identified the general spot where the fair took place, but they were bulldozed in the last few years when a fence line was taken out.
For many years fairs were held at Anamosa and at Monticello, usually, but not always, at different times. Steve heard one story about how a speaker was shanghaied off the train by Monticello folks when he was travelling to Anamosa for a speaking engagement at the fair there. He was greeted a little earlier than Anamosa and taken to the fair grounds in Monticello and wasn't the wiser. Unfortunately the people who had come to hear him in Anamosa never saw him!
The Anamosa fair in its last years seemed to be plagued by rain, while the Monticello fair somehow managed to miss the downpours. Eventually Anamosa fell out of favor and just up and quit. We know they held out until after 1920 from this stock certificate issued to John Chesire on 26 January of that year and submitted by his grandson, also named John Chesire.
Photo from Picturesque Anamosa, compiled and published by W. Leon Hall, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, ca. 1900. Submitted by Lois O'Donnell. Click on any person for a larger version.
© Copyright 1997-2013, The Art Department, © Copyright 2014-2020, Richard Harrison.