Our Iowa Heritage: Iowa Statehood Day – December 28th.

On Monday, December 28, 1846, upon the signature of President James K. Polk, Iowa became the 29th state in the Union.

Could President Polk be the originator of the faulty belief that Iowa is just “fly-over” country?
Hmm. Curious minds want to know!
The 29-Star Flag became the official United States Flag on July 4th, 1847. A star was added for the admission of Iowa (December 28th, 1846) and was to last for only one year. The only President to serve under this flag was James Polk (1845-1849).

Over the years, the people of Iowa have celebrated Iowa Statehood Day. Below are just a few postal covers celebrating December 28th…

(C-0133) Iowa Statehood Day – December 28, 1933. On the State of Iowa’s 87th birthday (1846 -1933) this cover was postmarked in Des Moines.
(C-0201) Iowa Statehood Day – December 28, 1936. On the State of Iowa’s 90th birthday (1846 -1936) this cover was postmarked in Des Moines.
(C-0124) Iowa Statehood Day – Postmarked in Iowa City on December 28, 1938 – with cachet celebrating Iowa Statehood – Dec. 28, 1846. 
(M-0018) (M-0020) (M-0019) Iowa Centennial – 1946 – commemorative button, coin, and sticker. Click here to read more about the Iowa Statehood Centennial Celebration.
(C-0147Iowa Statehood Day – 105th Anniversary of Iowa Statehood –  Postmarked on Dec. 28, 1951 in Des Moines.
(L-0023) Iowa Statehood Day – Great Seal of Iowa Display Card w/ both the U.S. and Iowa Flags –  Postmarked – December 28, 1994 in Des Moines.

On December 28, 1995, the Iowa Statehood Sesquicentennial (1846-1996) celebration began with a debut program held in Iowa City. This kicked off a whole year of Sesquicentennial celebrations around the Hawkeye State, with Stamp Day being celebrated in Dubuque on August 1st, and everything concluding on Statehood Day – December 28, 1996 with a 150th birthday party in Des Moines.

Click here to read more about Iowa’s Sesquicentennial Celebrations.


On December 28, 2021 – Iowans celebrate our 175th Anniversary of Statehood! Happy Birthday Iowa! Click here to visit our 175th Statehood Anniversary page…


DYK-October 1, 2021

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