A Grinnell man has just published his first book detailing the Poweshiek County town’s history as told through old postcards. Bill Menner used dozens of black-and-white postcards, some more than a century old, to weave an interesting community history in the book “Grinnell in Vintage Postcards”. He was able to find a wealth of postcards dating back to 1880, showcasing Grinnell’s historic nature and the town’s unique collection of architecture. Menner, who leads walking tours as part of his job as executive director of Grinnell Renaissance, says once he started looking, he found hundreds of old postcards and narrowed the list to 200 for the book.He was able to borrow the postcards from antique shops, the public library, the Grinnell College archives and from several local people who have extensive collections. All during 2004, Grinnell is marking its 150th anniversary. Menner says the book was both a pleasure and a challenge to assemble. Menner says finding and scanning the postcards was easy — what was hard was doing the research to find the history involved, since there are few people around who remember buildings that may have been torn down a half-dozen decades ago. Arcadia Publishing also offers another Iowa book called “Clinton County in Images”. Both books are available through local stores, Barnes & Noble, Borders, and “www.arcadiapublishing.com”.
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