Tag Archives: Ireton Iowa

Getting Numbered in Siouxland, Ireton

15 Apr
Mailboxes in a row in downtown Ireton, Iowa Monday, March 29, 2021. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

51027, the zip code for Ireton, IA. In a city, even a small city, this cluster of mailboxes would be replaced with a different type of mailbox cluster with individual key locks making it convenient for the postal service to deliver mail to one location, saving time in some residential areas. Here in the downtown area these mailboxes do the same.

The community was platted in 1882 with a post office operating there since that same date. Current census data has roughly 600 plus living in Ireton. When seeing these mailboxes a song from the 60’s by The Marvelletes came to mind.

Simple song lyrics spell out an unrequited love without any kind of resolution according to the lyrics.

“[Intro]
(Wait) Oh yes, wait a minute, Mr. Postman
(Wait) Wa-a-a-ait, Mr. Postman

[Chorus]
Please Mr. Postman, look and see (Whoa yeah)
Is there a letter in your bag for me?
(Please Mr. Po-o-ostman)
‘Cause it’s been a mighty long time (Whoa, yeah)
Since I heard from this boyfriend of mine>”

Maybe a young girl, from a small Iowa town, left behind, forgotten? The scenarios are endless. As is time.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Remembering History in Siouxland, Ireton

25 Jul

This past spring I accidentally came across a small museum in Ireton, Iowa. It is housed in a older building and happened to talk to the granddaughter of one of the women involved with it and another historical house in the community. The Ireton Area Historical Society is made up of members who are easily over 70 and have been involved with the group a number of years. These women work hard to preserve the community history of Ireton and the surrounding area. The sad thing is that as various members pass on, there are fewer to drive that need to intimately know the community’s history and share it with people, even strangers as myself who call them up and ask about seeing their museum and the Historical House on Ash Street, which has a one-room school house next door.

As people age in smaller communities that are no longer growing, the possibility of so much history is in danger of being forgotten. How many of us have shoe boxes of photographs from our parents that without any written notes on the back of the photos we have no idea who these people are. What side of the family they may have been  on (mother’s or father’s) and anything remotely about them.

A famous quote once stated that in order to know where one is going, you have got to know from whence you came. And sadly, losing the history of a place is a loss for all.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Still searching Siouxland, Ireton

10 Jun

It seems the more I keep looking around the Siouxland area the more places I keep finding to stop and visit. And the more places, the further behind I get in posting images. But that is probably a good problem. This past spring I stopped into the small community of Ireton and walked about and actually found a couple places I will eventually share with one of my Lifelong Learning photo classes. It was a day and a fun walk around the community. It was founded in the latter part of the 1800’s, and sprang up after a number of settlers began farming there, and when it was learned that there would be a railroad stop. But with like a lot of earlier communities, Ireton still exists but may not be as vibrant as its beginnings, but a comfortable home to those who live there and a nice place to stop by and take a walk.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

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