Iowa History Timeline: Text Version

 


B.C.E. = Before Common Era
C.E. = Common Era
1990s:
U.S. Event

Biotechnology Changes Farming

Biotechnology and genetically engineered crops and livestock impact farming. Controversy surrounds the benefits of both.

Find out more about biotechnology.

1990:
U.S. Event

Nobel Prize for Poet

Mexican poet Octavio Paz was awarded the Nobel Prize.

Find out about literature in Iowa.

1990:
Iowa Event

Iowa's population: 2,776,755

Federal Census of Iowa's population: 2,776,755

Find out more about the people of Iowa.

1990:
Iowa Event

First Woman Attorney General

Bonnie J. Campbell was the first woman to hold the office of Attorney General in Iowa.

Find out more about government in Iowa.

1990:
U.S. Event

Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 is Passed

Iowa Senator Tom Harkin was one of the authors of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990.

Find out more about the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

1990s:
Iowa Event

Statewide Fiber Optic Network

A statewide fiber optic network, the first of its kind in the nation, linked every county and most school districts in Iowa. It was called the Iowa Communications Network (ICN).

Find out more about the communications industry in Iowa.

1991:
U.S. Event

Soviet Union Ends

The communist government in the Soviet Union falls.


1991:
U.S. Event

War in Iraq

Operation Desert Storm was launched when the United States attacked Iraqi forces occupying Kuwait. Iraqi troops, under the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein, withdrew to Iraq.


1991:
Iowa Event

Riverboat Gambling Begins in Iowa

On April 1, 1991, the Dubuque Casino Belle made her maiden voyage as Iowa's first river gambling boat. Iowa was the first state to legalize riverboat gambling, but the law originally limited passengers to $5 per bet with a maximum loss of $200 per person, per cruise. Increasing competition from boats in neighboring states caused the Iowa legislature to vote to eliminate the gambling restrictions in 1994.

Find out more about Iowa destinations and attractions.

1993:
Iowa Event

Flood of '93

The floods of 1993 affected every part of Iowa. Previous efforts at flood control, including dams, dikes, levees, and similar engineering devices were ineffective in holding back the raging waters of all of the major and minor rivers and creeks in Iowa.

Find out about natural disasters in Iowa.

Top

1994:
U.S. Event

Satellite Technology Changes Farming

Farmers began to use satellites to help them. Using global positioning systems farmers were able to determine areas of their farms that needed more water, fertilizer or weed control.


1994:
U.S. Event

Mandela Elected President

Nelson Mandela was elected president of South Africa when Blacks voted for the first time in the country's history. Apartheid ended.


1994:
Iowa Event

Newspaper is 100

The state's black newspaper, Iowa Bystander, celebrated its 100th birthday.

Find out more about the communications industry in Iowa.

1998:
Iowa Event

Tom Vilsack Elected Governor

Governor Tom Vilsack was elected Iowa's 39th governor in 1998, the first Democratic governor of the state in more than 30 years. He was re-elected to a second four-year term in 2002.

Find out more about government in Iowa.

1998:
U.S. Event

President Impeached

President Bill Clinton became the second president in history to be impeached. He was charged with obstructing justice in an investigation of his relations with a female member of the White House staff.


1999:
Iowa Event

Record for Governor Ends

Upon completing his fourth four-year term in office, Terry Branstad held the record for most years as Iowa's governor. He held office for 16 years, breaking the former record held by his immediate predecessor, Robert Ray, who was in office for 14 years. It was during the administration of Governor Ray that the term lengths were changed from two years to four years, although the first two governors of the state of Iowa also served 4 year terms.

Find out more about government in Iowa.

1999:
Iowa Event

Vilsack Inagurated as Iowa's 40th Govenor

Democrat, Tom Vilsack, becomes the 40th Governor of Iowa. He won a re-election in 2002.

Find out more about government in Iowa.

1999:
Iowa Event

Iowa Gets a New Slogan

"Fields of Opportunity" becomes Iowa's new state slogan.

Find your Iowa story.

1999:
Iowa Event

New State Slogan

A new slogan for the state was selected through a newspaper and Internet balloting process conducted in 1998 and 1999. Iowans cast their votes for one of four slogans, with "Fields of Opportunities" receiving the most votes. Governor Tom Vilsack unveiled the new state slogan in August 1999 at the Iowa State Fair. "The new slogan conveys a sense of opportunity, that Iowa is a place of unlimited opportunity," said Vilsack. "The word 'field' has multiple meanings. It stands for Iowa's rich agricultural lands, a variety of professional job fields and the type of fields used by those who work with computers."

Find your Iowa story.



Questions to Consider:
When viewing information in the timeline, consider the following questions:

  • What time in history did this event occur? What else was happening at that time?
  • What events led to this event? What events followed it? Does this event begin or end something? Is this event part of a sequence of other events?
  • How did this event influence the present? How might it influence our future?


 

Sources:
Several entries for this timeline were adapted from Prairie Voices Iowa Heritage Curriculum, Annotated Iowa History Timeline, State Historical Society of Iowa, 1995. Used with permission.

Additional Sources:

  • Agriculture in the Classroom: Growing a Nation: The Story of American Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture.
  • Discovering Historic Iowa Transportation Milestones, Iowa Department of Transportation, 2000.
  • Downey, Mathew T. American History 1 and 2. Chicago: McGraw-Hill, 2006.
  • History and Life: The World and Its People. Glenview, Illinois: Scott, Foresman and Company, 1980.
  • Keenan, Sheila. Scholastic Encyclopedia of Women in the United States. New York: Scholastic Reference, 1996.
  • National Standards for History, UCLA National Center for History in the Schools, 1996.
  • Randy Lyon, This Month In Iowa History, State Historical Society of Iowa.
  • The Challenge of Freedom. River Forest, Illinois: Laidlaw Brothers, 1982.
  • William Kovarik, Ph.D., Environmental History Timeline, Radford University,
  • World Adventures in Time and Place. New York: Macmillan McGraw-Hill, 1997.

Iowa Pathways: Iowa History Resources for Students and Teachers
Home ~ My Path ~ Artifacts ~ Timeline ~ Quest ~ Teacher Resources ~ Project Information ~ Sponsors
Iowa Pathways © 2005 - 2014 Iowa Public Television