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Ask the Answer Person: "What is this?"

Posted: Wed, Mar 25, 2020 2:26 PM

(Max e-mails: "Dear Mr. Answer Person: What is this?  Noticed it at Trout Run Park beside the antique bridge"):

The Answer Person says: "The answer to your question comes from Winneshiek County Historic Preservation Commission Chair Steve Johnson.  He says it's a dam gate at the Bowstring Park site. 

Johnson explains, "As commission chair I was contacted this spring by the DNR about the three dam gates removed from the Lower Dam site.  I involved the Decorah Park & Rec about saving one of these three dam gates.  Currently the three organizations (the Iowa DNR, Decorah Park & Rec and the Winneshiek County Historic Preservation Commission) are working towards the goal of preserving the one Dam Gate  at the site.  An interpretive marker similar to the ones erected in Decorah will explain the past history when the Upper and Lower Dams were built and provided electricity to our local region.  The preservation of the dam gate is a 'work in progress' with the goal of what I would personally call an 'outdoor industrial sculpture' display, and yet tell the significance of the two dams role in our county history and development.  Those involved in this project would hate to see the dam gate turned into scrap metal, and lose this bit of our local history."