Tag Archives: correctionville iowa

Siouxland History the Corner Hardware store, Correctionville

19 Mar

 

Taking one’s time visiting small towns can sometimes reap small rewards. The rewards depending on one’s point of view. I found quite by accident while visiting Correctionville in December a hardware store that the current owner, Phil Sevening, told me has been in continual operation since its opening since 1872.

The Corner Hardware has been in operation since 1872 in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

 

Owner Phil Sevening of the Corner Hardware store helps customer Kathy Koskovich. The store has been in operation since 1872 in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

I wished at the time I had asked more questions, but he was busy with customers and I had other plans and haven’t gotten back to him. But like small town stores, it carried a lot of essentials people might need, and then a few other items as well.

The usual kind of tools can be found at the Corner Hardware store in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

 

The Corner Hardware store in Correctionville, Iowa, has been in continuous operation since 1872 Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

The store also had another room that carried collectibles someone might find they couldn’t live without. Then or now.

Antiques and “collectibles” in an additional room at the Corner Hardware store in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

 

Antiques and “collectibles” can be found in an additional room at the Corner Hardware store in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

But the additional charm of the place is that locals who came into the store knew one another and spent a little time catching up and sharing news they thought others would appreciate hearing.

Local residents Marc Groszkrueger, left and Keith Byers, right, chat at the Corner Hardware store, in operation since 1872, in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

But then again, a sign upon entering also let everyone know they should be a little civil in their discourse.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Owner Phil Sevening of the Corner Hardware store keeps a friendly reminder to customers in view near the front. The store has been in operation since 1872 in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga)

 

Visiting History in Siouxland, Correctionville

1 Mar

Sometimes it’s easy to pass history by when one is in a hurry getting from Point A to Point B. The Midwest is occasionally referred to as Flyover Country by those living on either coast. And for a person traveling by car, the same is true. Recently driving through Correctionville I took the time to stop and walk about. One thing I discovered is that the small town is named after a land marking convention.

The city of Correctionville, Iowa, received its name for the land division that takes place within its city limits, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Incorporated in 1855, a landmark to honor how the city of Correctionville, Iowa, received its name, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

I also found a former bank building that was established in 1892 and now housing a local museum. And again, a grain elevator is one of the main downtown businesses that thrive in smaller Iowa communities. It is an agricultural state and most small towns have one elevator for the local farmers.

A former bank building established in 1892, and now a museum in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A closed store in the downtown area of Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

I came across a former Mobil Oil company gas station. Growing up I can sightly remember seeing such stations in TV advertisements and in print magazines the 1950’s and ’60’s.  A now faded commemorative plaque talks about cross-country travel, mostly done then by people in automobiles. And prior to the major interstates that now criss cross the country, these small town stations provided easy access to refueling and helped to spur the local economies.

Now a bait and tackle shop, a former stone gas station finds a new purpose, like many former businesses in small communities like Correctionville, Iowa, went through changes, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A faded sign commemorating cross-country travel near a former gas station in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. Many communities have seen their communities change with residents and businesses also fading. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

But a gem I came across is a former school house built in 1881 and now for many years housing the G.A.R. (Grand Army of the Republic) and a veteran’s meeting hall. For the most part, small towns commemorate a lot from their past as the future remains unsure since young people tend to move to larger communities where they can find employment and more opportunity and history recedes in the smaller towns and futures are lived large in metro areas.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

 

A former school building operating since 1881 and now a G.A.R. (Grand Army of the Republic) and veterans building in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A former school, now the G.A.R. (Grand Army of the Republic) and Vets center in Correctionville, Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

 

Photographing a plane tragedy in Siouxland, Correctionville

2 Dec

Over the years I have witnessed various tragedies that have occurred. They are events that are sometimes hard to watch. Some I have seen shortly after they have happened, others a little later, but all make you sad because people’s lives have changed in a few short seconds. This weekend a small plane crashed south of Correctionville, Iowa, a small farming community that sits along Highway 20 in Western Iowa and is about 30 minutes east of Sioux City. That evening I was attending an annual Christmas parade in the small town of Le Mars, Iowa, the ice cream capital of the world if you listen to some local residents. Adults and children alike were revelling in the appearance of not one, but three Santas in the parade as well as Christmas lit floats and other entries as people get into the spirit of the season. But two of the three people in the small plane that crashed into a corn field approximately 50 miles away will never again celebrate Christmas. And the pilot of the plane was taken to a local hospital about 30 minutes away from the area with roughly 75 per cent of his body burned according to local media reports.

When I taught a photojournalism course at the local community college I always told students that covering tragic events needed extra caution. They are sensitive events involving people’s lives and emotions depending on what happens. Plus as a photographer you need to be cautious out photographing such an event because you don’t know what else may happen. In covering house fires there are times when there are natural gas lines coming into a house or possibly live electrical wires that become unattached to the house and are still “hot”. I received a phone call from a local newspaper editor telling me about the crash and I weighed the idea of when I wanted to photograph the site. Saturday evening when the plane crashed, it was foggy in parts of Woodbury County. Local media reported that an ambulance leaving the scene hit a Sheriff’s deputy’s car because of the fog. I didn’t want to add to any problems because parking would have been on the side of a two-lane highway, with only flashers and emergency lights telling other motorists there was something going on. So I decided to go out early Sunday morning. There would be less traffic and I would see more of the crash site that in the previous darkness of the evening. I arrived to find a lone deputy’s car at the scene, and made some photographs. The deputy asked me who I was and then asked me to move along because she didn’t want a lot of looky-loos stopping along side the highway possibly causing other problems. I complied, since I had photographed what I needed at the time. I asked her when the Federal Aviation Administration investigators would be out to survey the scene and she gave me an estimated time of arrival. I left, went into Correctionville where I made some other non-related photographs of a building and then returned an hour later. There was more traffic on the road by mid-morning, with a lot of them slowing down to look at what had happened, or stopping along the edge of the road. I pulled way off road onto the shoulder, made some photographs and then left again. Not needing to spend any more time than necessary and causing problems for the Sheriff’s department. Courtesy is always something one should defer to. I didn’t photograph the roadway with traffic, as it was hit and miss with people and it would have required more time and putting myself into a position to show the road and the area drivers were looking at that would be risky at best. Safety should always come first.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

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