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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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Main entrance to the company’s plant in West Liberty, Iowa in 2006

West Liberty Foods, L.L.C. is an American meat processing company owned by the Iowa Turkey Growers Cooperative and formed in 1996 by a group of Iowa turkey growers, and now owns four meat processing plants. The company mainly produces products for customers to sell under their own brand names. As of 2006, West liberty Foods was the 12th largest turkey company in the United States. Each plant, located in the three Iowa towns of West Liberty, Mount Pleasant, and Sigourney as well as Tremonton, Utah, focuses on specific aspects of the meat packing process. The West Liberty plant participates in the entire process by slaughtering animals, further processing meats into products, and packaging finished products, and the Sigourney plant focuses on the further processing step only, and the Mount Pleasant plant only packages finished product. While West Liberty Foods has experienced growth and received industry recognition since its inception, it initially faced a difficult market for turkeys, and has experienced problems with labor discontent. Employees remain with the company for an average of nine years, with more than 1500 employed.


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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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Two Iowa Interstate Railway locomotives near Altoona, Iowa



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