Thursday, January 3, 2013

Those Places Thursday: Eagles Grove, Iowa

Eagles Grove, Iowa is located in Wright County. 

State of Iowa with Wright County highlighted
My great-great grandparents, Charles K. Carter and Sarah Melissa Schoonover Carter relocated there sometime between 1880 and 1900.  Their daughter, Bessie Alice Carter, my great-grandmother, was raised there.  Charles was a jeweler and a farmer.  They lived in a beautiful farmhouse:

From left:  Bessie Carter Ranney holding her son, Kenneth Carter Ranney; her husband, Luther Boardman Ranney; and her parents, Charles K. Carter and Sarah Schoonover Carter, circa 1910
The history of Eagle Grove as recounted on the City of Eagle Grove website at

"Eagle Grove Junction was first located here by the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad in the mid 1800's.  It's location was chosen because of the abundance of natural springs in the area.  This was ideal for the railroad to supply water for the steam engines and thus a station was located here.

Eagle Grove received its name many years ago because of an enormous eagle's nest perched high above the Boone River bank in a large grove of oak trees. In 1851 Mr. N. B. Paine came to Wright County, purchased a piece of property and built a log cabin. Directly west of his cabin is where the grove of trees was located sheltering the bird of our national heritage. The nest was over six feet in diameter and had the appearance 

of having been located there for some time. It could be seen for miles around. The eagles were at home in the spring and summer of 1855-56, but in the spring of 1857 they were shot and killed by a trapper. Eagle Grove was thus named in honor of the grand old bird of freedom.
Eagle Grove was incorporated as a town in October of 1881."

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