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Iowa is a state located in the Midwestern United States of America on the rolling hills between the Mississippi River and the Missouri River. The state is the center of one of the Earth’s most productive agricultural regions. Admitted to the Union on December 28, 1846, Iowa became the 29th State. Iowa ranks 26th in total area and 30th in population among the 50 states. The United States Census Bureau estimates that the state population was 3,007,856 in 2009. Des Moines is the capital, most populous city, and center of the most populous metropolitan area of Iowa.



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USS Iowa (BB-61) fires her 16-inch/50-caliber guns on 15 August 1984 during a firepower demonstration after her modernization

USS Iowa (BB-61) ("The Big Stick") was the lead ship of her class of battleship and the fourth in the United States Navy to be named in honor of the 29th state. Owing to the cancellation of the Montana-class battleships, Iowa is the last lead ship of any class of United States battleships, and was the only ship of her class to have served in the Atlantic Ocean during World War II. During World War II, Iowa served as a presidential shuttle in the Atlantic Fleet, moving President Roosevelt to and from the Tehran conference. When transferred to the Pacific Fleet in 1944, Iowa shelled beachheads at Kwajalein and Eniwetok in advance of Allied amphibious landings and screened aircraft carriers operating in the Marshall Islands. During the Korean War, Iowa was involved in raids on the North Korean coast, after which she was decommissioned into the United States Navy reserve fleets, better known as the "mothball fleet". She was reactivated in 1984 as part of the 600-ship Navy plan, and operated in both the Atlantic and Pacific Fleets to counter the recently expanded Soviet Navy. In April 1989, an explosion of undetermined origin wrecked her #2 gun turret, killing 47 sailors. Iowa was decommissioned for the last time in 1990, and was initially struck from the Naval Vessel Register in 1995. She was reinstated from 1999 to 2006 to comply with federal laws that required retention and maintenance of two Iowa-class battleships. Iowa is currently berthed with the National Defense Reserve Fleet at Suisun Bay, near San Francisco, California, and is awaiting donation to a not-for-profit entity for use as a museum ship.


Selected biography

Serranus Clinton Hastings
Serranus Clinton Hastings (November 22, 1814 – February 18, 1893) was a 19th-century politician and a prominent lawyer in the United States. He studied law as a young man and moved to the Iowa District in 1837 to open a law office. Iowa became a territory a year later, and he was elected a member of the House of Representatives of the Iowa Territorial General Assembly. When the territory became the state of Iowa in 1846, he won an election to represent the state in the United States House of Representatives. After his term ended, he became Chief Justice of the Iowa Supreme Court. He resigned after one year in office and moved to California. He was appointed the California Supreme Court as Chief Justice a few months later. He won an election to be Attorney General of California, and assumed office shortly after his term as Chief Justice ended. He began practicing law again as Attorney General. He earned a small fortune with his law practice and used that fortune to finance his successful real estate venture. In 1878, he founded the Hastings College of the Law with a donation of US$100,000.


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  1. Rod Blum (R)
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