Iowa City, city (1990 pop. 59,738), seat of Johnson co., E Iowa, on both sides of the Iowa River; founded 1839 as the capital of Iowa Territory, inc. 1853. Among its manufactures are foam rubber, animal feed, paper, and food products. The city is the seat of the Univ. of Iowa (1855) and is a major center of medical treatment and research. The old stone capitol in the city was begun in 1840; the legislature sat there until the seat of government was moved to Des Moines in 1857. With the arrival of the railroad (1855), Iowa City became an important outfitting center for the westward trails. The library of the state historical society is there. Nearby are the villages of the Amana Society, Coralville dam and reservoir, and the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library as well as his birthplace (in West Branch).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.