Residents of Corning and the surrounding area in southwest Iowa are raising money to restore an historic French settlement. It was called “Icaria” and the Adams County Economic Development historic preservation coordinator says the project will celebrate the area’s ethnic heritage.Saundra Leininger says the Icaria settlement was a depot stop on the Mormon Trail.Leininger says the Icaria Heritage Foundation board is in the process of purchasing the 40-acre settlement site.Restoration of the communal dining hall is the group’s first project.About 300 people once lived on the “Icaria” settlement. Many settlers were scholars, teachers and artisans — few were farmers, by trade, when they entered communal life, but the group quickly developed flourishing gardens, vinyards and orchards. An “Icarian” designed the state capitol buildings in Des Moines and Springfield, Illinois.
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