Statewide historic preservation conference Sept. 19-20 in Sioux City
Author and former PBS television host Bob Yapp to deliver keynote address

For immediate release August 18, 2008


Contact: Jeff Morgan,, (515) 281-3858

(DES MOINES) – Preserving Iowa’s historic properties and other assets will be the focus of a statewide conference next month in Sioux City.

“Reddy for Preservation” will be Sept. 19-20, 2008, at the Masonic Temple and Scottish Rite Temple in Sioux City. Early-bird registration by Sept. 2, 2008, is $35 for the two-day conference. Registration after Sept. 2, 2008, and at the door is $50. More information is available at or by contacting Paul Barnes at the City of Sioux City at 712-279-6364 or

Author and former PBS television host Bob Yapp (“About Your House with Bob Yapp”) will deliver the opening keynote address, focusing on “Preservation Doesn’t Cost – It Pays!” with tips and information about the economic benefits of historic preservation.

The conference will bring together Iowa’s leading historic preservationists to cover a wide range of topics and issues, including historic preservation tax credits, rehabilitation, cemetery preservation, archaeology, preservation advocacy, cultural landscapes and more.

Participants will have several opportunities to explore and discuss a number of Sioux City’s historic preservation projects as part of conference breakout sessions.

Since prehistoric times, the area now known as Siouxland has had a strong agricultural base as farming communities grew along the Missouri River and its tributaries.

In the 19th century, Sioux City became the economic center of the region, rising to national prominence with its stockyards and meatpacking plants rivaling those in Chicago.

Home to the first elevated railway in the world and a hub of railroad activity, the city served as a gathering point for agricultural products shipped from the west. The resulting economic prosperity led to a large building boom at the turn of the century and the city proudly boasts the best collection of terra cotta buildings in the state.

Today, Sioux City is northwest Iowa’s largest city and has one of the state’s strongest historic preservation programs with designations as a Preserve America Community, an Iowa Great Place, a Certified Local Government and three Iowa Cultural Districts. 

Conference tours and discussion will focus on several areas, including:

  • The historic Fourth Street area that has been preserved through the use of historic preservation tax credits
  • Sioux City’s Architectural Treasures Tour featuring City Hall, Woodbury County Courthouse, the Warrior Hotel and the Orpheum Theatre.
  • Northwest Iowa’s cultural landscapes, featuring the archaeological footprints of the Great Oasis and Mill Creek sites in an around the valleys of the Big Sioux and nearby streams such as Broken Kettle and Perry creeks.

The conference will also feature a presentation by Tim Samuelson, cultural historian for the City of Chicago, who will deliver an entertaining keynote on the story of Alfonso Iannelli’s artwork at the Woodbury County Courthouse. The conference is sponsored in part by the State Historical Society of Iowa.



The State Historical Society of Iowa is a division of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs, and is a trustee of Iowa's historical legacy and an advocate for understanding Iowa's past. It identifies, records, collects, preserves, manages and provides access to Iowa's historical resources. Its dual mission of preservation and education serves Iowans of all ages, conducts and stimulates research, disseminates information, and encourages and supports historical preservation and education efforts of others throughout the state. Visit or call 515-281-5111 for more information.

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