Burlington, Iowa

Burlington is a city and the county seat of Des Moines County, Iowa, United States.[4] The population was 25,663 in the 2010 census, a decline from the 26,839 population in the 2000 census.[5][6] Burlington is the center of a micropolitan area including West Burlington, Iowa, and Middletown, Iowa, and Gulfport, Illinois. Burlington is the home of Snake Alley, once labelled the crookedest alley in the world.

Burlington, Iowa


Flint Hills
Skyline of Burlington from Mississippi River
Skyline of Burlington from Mississippi River
Location in the state of Iowa
Location in the state of Iowa
Coordinates: 40°48′29″N 91°6′57″W / 40.80806°N 91.11583°WCoordinates: 40°48′29″N 91°6′57″W / 40.80806°N 91.11583°W
CountryUnited States
State Iowa
CountyDes Moines
 • MayorShane McCampbell
 • City CouncilBecky Anderson (Mayor Pro Tem)
Robert Fleming
Tim Scott
Becky Shockley
 • Total15.24 sq mi (39.47 km2)
 • Land14.48 sq mi (37.50 km2)
 • Water0.76 sq mi (1.97 km2)
696 ft (185 m)
 • Total25,663
 • Estimate 
 • Density1,772/sq mi (684.3/km2)
 • Demonym
Time zoneUTC−6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s)319
FIPS code19-09550
GNIS feature ID0454995


Prior to European settlement, the area was neutral territory for the Sac and Fox Indians, who called it Shoquoquon (Shok-ko-kon), meaning Flint Hills.[7]

In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson organized two parties of explorers to map the Louisiana Purchase. The Lewis and Clark Expedition followed the Missouri River, while Lt. Zebulon Pike followed the Mississippi River. In 1805, Pike landed at the bluffs below Burlington and raised the United States Flag for the first time on what would become Iowa soil and recommended construction of a fort. The recommendation went unheeded.

Burlington IA Barber 1865p525 cropped
Burlington in 1865.

The American Fur Company of John Jacob Astor established a post in the area in 1829. Settlement began in 1833, shortly after the Black Hawk Purchase, when Samuel (aka Simpson) White, Amzi Doolitle, and Morton M. McCarver crossed the Mississippi River from Big Island and staked claims there.[8][9][10] According to an account A.T. Andreas wrote in 1875, White erected a cabin in the area later platted to be Front Street between Court and High streets. Andreas called White and Doolittle the Romulus and Remus of their settlement, referring to the mythic heroes who founded Rome, a city surrounded by hills. A few weeks later, William R. Ross joined them and established a general store. In November and December, he surveyed the settlement for White and Doolittle.[11]:145

In the spring of 1834 they allowed John Gray, who purchased the first lot with his wife Eliza Jane, to rename the town for $50. Gray chose to name it Burlington in honor of his hometown in Vermont.[12] The Grays' daughter Abigail was born in Burlington that same year, the first American settler child born on Iowa soil.[a]

In 1837, Burlington was designated the second territorial capital of the Wisconsin Territory.[13] The Iowa Territory was organized in the following year, and Burlington was named as its first territorial capital.[14] The government used "Old Zion," the first Methodist Church in Iowa (located near what is now Third and Washington streets), to conduct its business. A historical marker commemorates the site of the church and early territorial government.

On May 22, 1849, Maj. William Williams visited Burlington, writing a brief description in his journal:[15]

This town [was] originally called Flint Hill- the Indian name was Shoquokon, Flint or Rock Hill. [It is] beautifully elevated, situated on the west side of the Mississippi River, a place of very considerable business. The town is very well built. Houses are good, generally taste[ful], brick dwellings. A great many handsome residences on the more elevated parts of the bluff. The number of inhabitants between 3,000 and 3,500. ... Was the first seat of government after the formation of the Territory of Iowa. The view of the city is extremely picturesque from the river. The main part of the city is situated like an amphitheater formed by the surrounding hills, beautiful buildings and private residences on the eminences around. From the location of Burlington it must always be a place of considerable trade. The city is well built [in the] modern style, a very intelligent population... The river here is over 3/4 of mile wide and steam ferry boats constantly plying between this and the Illinois shore.

— Maj. William Williams
Lady Liberty of Burlington
Lady Liberty of Burlington

Iowa's nickname, "The Hawkeye State," has its roots in Burlington. At Judge David Rorer's suggestion, publisher James G. Edwards changed The Iowa Patriot newspaper's name to The Hawk-Eye and Iowa Patriot in tribute to his friend, Chief Black Hawk. Rorer is said to have found the name in James Fenimore Cooper's The Last of the Mohicans, but Edwards proposed the nickname to "...rescue from oblivian [sic] a momento [sic], at least of the name of the old chief."[16]

Burlington was a bustling river port in the steamboat era and a central city to the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad. The "Burlington Route" (1848–1970) merged into the Burlington Northern Railroad (1970–1996), which in turn merged into the BNSF Railway (1997–present). The "Burlington" name has been given to one of the United States' largest railroads. One of BNSF's main east-west lines still crosses the Mississippi at Burlington.

In the late twentieth century, retail expanded with suburbanization of the population. After purchasing Benner Tea, Aldi opened its first store in the United States at Burlington in 1976.[17][18] Westland Mall opened in nearby West Burlington in 1977.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.24 square miles (39.47 km2), of which, 14.48 square miles (37.50 km2) is land and 0.76 square miles (1.97 km2) is water.[1]



Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 201625,277[3]−1.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[20]

2010 census

As of the 2010 census,[2] there were 25,663 people, 10,938 households, and 6,693 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,772.3 inhabitants per square mile (684.3/km2). There were 11,899 housing units at an average density of 821.8 per square mile (317.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 81.2% White, 14.2% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.8% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.7% from other races, and 2.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.1% of the population.

There were 10,938 households of which 29.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.9% were married couples living together, 14.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.8% were non-families. 32.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.89.

The median age in the city was 39.7 years. 23.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.7% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.6% were from 25 to 44; 26.5% were from 45 to 64; and 17.4% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.1% male and 51.9% female.

2000 census

As of the 2000 census,[21] there were 26,839 people, 11,102 households, and 7,105 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,910.1 per square mile (737.6/km²). There were 11,985 housing units at an average density of 853.0 per square mile (329.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 86.6% White, 10.0% African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.66% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.90% from other races, and 1.43% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.06% of the population.

There were 11,102 households out of which 29.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.2% were married couples living together, 12.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.0% were non-families. 31.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.36 and the average family size was 4.94.

Age spread: 24.5% under the age of 18, 8.9% from 18 to 24, 26.7% from 25 to 44, 22.7% from 45 to 64, and 17.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $33,770, and the median income for a family was $40,912. Males had a median income of $33,238 versus $23,003 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,450. About 10.0% of families and 12.6% of the population was below the poverty line, including 20.9% of those under age 18 and 8.9% of those age 65 or over.


Burlington's roots are in transportation and manufacturing. Manufacturing plants are among the largest employers in the area, including companies such as American Ordnance LLC, Case Corporation, ABB (formerly General Electric), Champion Spark Plugs, Shearer's Foods and Winegard Company. The largest employer in the area is the Great River Medical Center. Among one of the oldest businesses in Burlington, the Murray factory (now Murray Turbomachinery and owned by Dresser-Rand) which has been in operation in Burlington since before 1900, the original building on Central St. and Washington St. which was divided by the local train tracks, was recently razed. Another long-lived business is Case Corporation, which has been at its current location on Des Moines Avenue, approximately a quarter-mile from the Mississippi River, since 1937. The first backhoes rolled off the assembly line at the Burlington plant in 1957, which is now the only plant in the United States that produces the Case Loader/Backhoe, giving Burlington the nickname "Backhoe Capital of the World." Case is now a division of the Italian holding group CNH Industrial. Employment at Case peaked in the 1980s, according to the Des Moines Register, then declined after "Case initiated a wave of buyouts and early retirements in the 1990s and early 2000s, and ended the contract with the union in 2004"; but in May 2010, the Register reports, Case announced that "it will open a new line that builds corn-picker heads for combines, as early as [Spring, 2012]" and that by mid-2013 it will add more than 200 positions.[22]

Over the last several years, several businesses have either left the area or relocated elsewhere. These businesses include Exide, makers of vehicle batteries, CAT, Case Corporation's closest competitor in American made construction equipment, and Lehigh-Leopold, makers of office furniture. This has left some former manufacturing plants around the city empty, but other businesses have moved into them; PPG, maker of auto safety glass has moved into the former CAT plant, and a warehouse has moved into the former Leopold building. In March 2012, the Des Moines Register reported that "Unemployment here is 7.6 percent, compared with the 5.4 percent state average".[22]

Downtown Burlington

Capitol Theater - Burlington Iowa
Capitol Theater

The downtown area holds a number of buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places, among them the Burlington Apartments (listed as the Hotel Burlington), the Burlington Railroad Depot, the Des Moines County Courthouse, the Burlington Fire Department central station, the Port of Burlington building, Memorial Auditorium, River Park Place (as Burlington Mercy Hospital), the Burlington Police Department building (as Burlington Paper Company), The Capitol Theater, First Congregational Church, St. Paul's Catholic Church and several others. The downtown skyline is noted for its several church spires.


Burlington community field1
The Burlington Bees play the Swing of the Quad Cities in this July 2004 game at Burlington Community Field.

Burlington is the home of the Burlington Bees baseball team, a member of the Class A Midwest League. The Bees play at Community Field, which underwent extensive renovation in 2005.

Burlington hosts the Snake Alley Criterium, one of the most physically challenging races in the Midwest. The annual event is held on a 15-block course, with differences in elevation from 555 feet to 678 feet. The course is entirely on city streets, mostly in the downtown commercial area. A one block-long climb is on the historic brick street named Snake Alley. The 276-foot-long Snake Alley has five switchbacks in a 60-foot climb. The average grade is 12.5 percent in that one block.

Twice, Burlington has been the finishing point for RAGBRAI, the annual bicycle ride that starts at the Missouri River in western Iowa and ends in eastern Iowa at the Mississippi River.


Burlington is served by the Burlington Community School District, which has five elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school and one alternative high school. Private education is also available for kindergarten through 12th grade at Notre Dame Catholic School, and Great River Christian School (GRCS).

In 1833 the first school facility for Burlington opened in a log cabin. School District No. 2 of the Township of Burlington was established on March 29, 1849.[23]

The Burlington School District has five elementary schools: North Hill, Sunnyside, Grimes, Corse and Black Hawk. All are new buildings or have been recently completely rehabilitated, the newest, North Hill Elementary, received its first students in 2009, there are no elementary school buildings within the school district that are over 40 years old. The district has two middle schools: Edward Stone and Aldo Leopold. Beginning with the 2010–11 school year, students who had attended Oak Street Middle School (an aging building that was completed around 1907) began attending Aldo Leopold (named in honor of ecologist, and environmentalist, Aldo Leopold, a former resident of Burlington, and author of "A Sand County Almanac"), the new school building is located near the corner of Sunnyside Avenue, and Roosevelt Avenue. Edward Stone, which opened at the start of the 2012–13 school year, is located near the corner of Lawrence Drive and Mason Road. The middle school was named in honor of former JPL head, and Burlington educated Dr. Edward Stone. This building replaced the James Madison Middle School building, which has only been in the system since the mid-1960s. These two new middle schools were built to accommodate more students after a third building, Horace Mann, was gutted by fire in 2005.

Burlington Community High School was constructed in 1968, and occupied the following year, with the first graduating class in June 1970. Prior to that, the high school students were educated at a building located near the downtown business district; the building is still standing and for a time served as Burlington Alternative High School, but has been unoccupied since 1996. Notre Dame High School and Elementary schools occupy a building near the Burlington high school. Great River Christian Schools occupies the old Prospect Hill Elementary School building ,426 Harrison St. A third middle school building once existed on the edge of Perkins Park, named Horace Mann, that building was gutted by fire in 2005, and later razed. The school district offices are located near the corner of West Avenue, and White Street, in a large mansion once owned by Railroad tycoon Charles Elliott Perkins, and is nicknamed "The White House," due to the whitewashed facade. The original High School building (which now serves as the School District Maintenance shops) is noted as being the first high school built west of the Mississippi River.

Burlington is also served by Southeastern Community College.

Burlington Public Library serves the community.


Burlington, Iowa is served by the following local media outlets:

  • The Hawk Eye is a morning newspaper published seven days a week. The paper was established in 1837 and is Iowa's oldest newspaper.
  • Des Moines County News is a once a week newspaper.

Burlington's radio stations include WQKQ 92.1 FM, KAYP 89.9 FM, KKMI 93.5 FM, KCDM 98.3 FM, KDMG 103.1 FM, KBKB 101.7 FM, KHDK 97.3 FM, KGRS 107.3 FM, KCPS 1150 AM, KBKB 1360 AM, and KBUR 1490 AM. Burlington residents also listen to stations in nearby communities, most notably, the Quad Cities.


Burlington previously had a local TV station, KJMH. It signed on August 2, 1984 from a tower on Winegard Drive. It also had studios in Burlington. Initially an independent station, it became a charter FOX affiliate in 1986, but suffered from duplication from KLJB in the Quad Cities. In 1996, the station became a full-time satellite of KLJB, marking the end of local broadcast TV in Burlington. Today, those in the Burlington-Oquawka Area receive local over-the-air programming from stations in the Quad Cities (where the city is located since then), Quincy, and Ottumwa, including the stations listed below.

  • WHBF-TV CBS Channel 4.1 (RF 4); Rock Island, IL (Quad Cities)
  • KWQC-TV NBC Channel 6.1 (RF 36); Davenport, IA (Quad Cities)
  • KHQA-TV CBS Channel 7.1 (RF 7); Hannibal, MO (Quincy, IL)
  • KHQA-TV ABC Channel 7.2 (RF 7); Hannibal, MO (Quincy, IL)
  • WQAD-TV ABC Channel 8.1 (RF 38); Moline, IL (Quad Cities)
  • WQAD-DT3 MyNetworkTV Channel 8.3 (RF 38); Moline, IL (Quad Cities)
  • WGEM-TV NBC Channel 10.1 (RF 10); Quincy, IL
  • WGEM-DT2 The CW Channel 10.2 (RF 10); Quincy, IL
  • WGEM-DT3 Fox Channel 10.3 (RF 10); Quincy, IL
  • KIIN PBS Channel 12.1 (RF 12); Iowa City, IA
  • KYOU-TV Fox Channel 15.1 (RF 15); Ottumwa, IA
  • WTJR CTN Channel 16.1 (RF 32); Quincy, IL
  • KLJB Fox Channel 18.1 (RF 49); Davenport, IA (Quad Cities)
  • KWKB This TV Channel 20.1 (RF 25); Iowa City, IA
  • WMEC PBS Channel 22.1 (RF 21); Macomb, IL
  • WQPT-TV PBS Channel 24.1 (RF 23); Moline, IL (Quad Cities)
  • KGCW The CW Channel 26.1 (RF 41); Burlington, IA (Quad Cities, studio in Rock Island)
  • KQIN PBS Channel 36.1 (RF 34); Davenport, IA (Quad Cities)


Surface Transportation

Great River Bridge Burlington Iowa 1997
Great River Bridge in Burlington

The town is served by U.S. Route 34, which is the freeway that goes through the middle of town and U.S. Route 61. Iowa Highways 99 and 406 served the town before they were decommissioned in 2003. The two still exist as County roads. Burlington Urban Service (B.U.S.) is a transportation system owned and operated by the City of Burlington. Routes service nearly all areas of Burlington, and nearly 90% of all residents live within 3 city blocks of a bus route. Greyhound Lines and Burlington Trailways provide daily out-of-town bus service.

Rail Service

Amtrak, the national passenger rail system, provides service to Burlington, operating its California Zephyr[24] daily in both directions between Chicago, Illinois, and Emeryville, California, across the bay from San Francisco.


The Southeast Iowa Regional Airport (IATA code BRL), is located about five miles south of downtown. Commercial service is provided through Air Choice One. This service offers two weekday daily flights to St. Louis and Chicago, while offering single flights on weekends. Quad City International Airport, the area's large international airport, is approximately 70 miles north of the city, in Moline, Illinois.

Notable people

Sister cities

Burlington has one sister city, as designated by Sister Cities International:


  1. ^ John Gray was of European descent. Eliza Jane Gray was of mixed African American and Native American heritage.

See also


  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on January 24, 2012. Retrieved 2012-05-11.
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-05-11.
  3. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  4. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  5. ^ "Population & Housing Occupancy Status 2010". United States Census Bureau American FactFinder. Archived from the original on July 21, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-03.
  6. ^ "Data from the 2010 Census". State Data Center of Iowa. Archived from the original on July 18, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-03.
  7. ^ "About The Hawk Eye", The Hawk Eye Newspaper, archived from the original on October 1, 2011, retrieved September 19, 2011.
  8. ^ Antrobus, Augustine M. (1915). History of Des Moines County, Iowa. 1. The S. J. Clarke publishing company. p. 95.
  9. ^ Negus, Charles. "The Early History of Iowa". Annals of Iowa. Iowa Division of Historical Museum and Archives, State Historical Society of Iowa. 7 (2–4): 145.
  10. ^ Meany, Edmond S. (1911). "Morton Matthew McCarver Frontier City Builder". Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1909. American Historical Association: 174.
  11. ^ Huff, S. W. (Ed.), Annals of Iowa, Vol. VII (Iowa City: State Historical Society of Iowa, 1869), p. 145.
  12. ^ "NAMED THIS CITY", Burlington Gazette, September 22, 1896.
  13. ^ Hoffmann, Gregg (May 10, 2004). "Travel & Visitors Guide: Beyond Milwaukee: Belmont was Wisconsins first capital". Onmilwaukee.com. Retrieved 2011-09-19.
  14. ^ "How Iowa Became A Territory". Iagenweb.org. Retrieved 2011-09-19.
  15. ^ Williams, William (1920). "Major William Williams' Journal of a Trip to Iowa in 1849". Annals of Iowa. 12 (4): 246–247, edited for minor spelling and punctuation.
  16. ^ "The State of Iowa – An Introduction to the Hawkeye State from". Netstate.Com. Retrieved 2011-09-19.
  17. ^ Johnson, Patt (September 10, 2015). "Aldi to open Windsor Heights store". The Register and Tribune. Des Moines. Retrieved September 7, 2017.
  18. ^ Weymouth, Lauren. "Secrets of the German supermarkets conquering America (24 slides)". MSN: Money. Archived from the original on September 7, 2017. Retrieved September 7, 2017.
  19. ^ "Weatherbase: Historical Weather for Burlington, Iowa, United States of America". August 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2007.
  20. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  21. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  22. ^ a b Belz, Adam (March 18, 2012). "Factory town of Burlington working to remake itself". Des Moines Register.
  23. ^ "History." Burlington Community School District. August 19, 1999. Retrieved on September 16, 2018.
  24. ^ http://www.amtrak.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=am2/am2Popup&code=BRL
  25. ^ "HASTINGS, Serranus Clinton, (1813–1893)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved March 12, 2014.
  26. ^ "Nebraska Governor Kay A. Orr". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 6, 2012.
  27. ^ Gue, Benjamin F. (1903). HISTORY OF IOWA From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century. The Century History Company. pp. 212 Vol IV. Retrieved 2011-06-01.

External links

Augustus C. Dodge

Augustus Caesar Dodge (January 2, 1812 – November 20, 1883) was one of the first set of United States Senators to represent the state of Iowa after it was admitted to the Union as a state in 1846. Dodge, a Democrat, had also represented Iowa Territory in Congress as its delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives from 1840 to 1846.

He was born in what is now Ste. Genevieve, Missouri (then in Louisiana Territory). Self-educated, he moved to Illinois in 1827, settled in Galena, and was employed there in various capacities in his father's lead mines. He served in the Black Hawk War and other Indian wars. In 1837, he moved to what is now Burlington, Iowa (then in Wisconsin Territory), where he served as register of the land office until 1840.

Bart Howard

Bart Howard (born Howard Joseph Gustafson, June 1, 1915 – February 21, 2004) was an American composer and songwriter, most notably of the jazz standard "Fly Me to the Moon", which has been performed by Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Ella Fitzgerald, Nancy Wilson, Della Reese, Bobby Womack, Diana Krall, June Christy, Brenda Lee, and Astrud Gilberto, among others. It is played frequently by jazz and popular musicians around the world.

Bernhart Henn

Bernhart Henn (1817 – August 30, 1865) was a pioneer lawyer and businessman, and a two-term Democratic U.S. Representative from Iowa's 1st congressional district during Iowa's first decade of statehood.

Henn was born in Cherry Valley, New York in 1817. He attended the common schools and moved to what is now Burlington, Iowa, then capital of Iowa Territory, in 1838. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in Burlington. He later moved to Fairfield, Iowa, when he was appointed register of the United States land office in 1845 by President James K. Polk.

In 1850 he was elected to represent Iowa's 1st congressional district in the U.S. House. While he was officially considered a Democrat, a hostile editor of the first Burlington newspaper (James G. Edwards of the "Hawk-Eye") labelled him a "Locofoco," a slang term for a radical faction of the Party. He initially served in the Thirty-second Congress. After he ran for, and won, re-election in 1852, he served in the Thirty-third Congress.

In December 1854, Henn tried and failed to win election in the Iowa General Assembly to the U.S. Senate, losing to James Harlan. Meanwhile, Augustus Hall, another Democrat, had won election to Henn's House seat. In all, Henn served in the U.S. House from March 4, 1851 to March 3, 1855.

After leaving Congress, Henn engaged in banking and dealing in real estate. He died on August 30, 1865 in Fairfield. He was interred there, in Evergreen Cemetery.

Burlington, Iowa micropolitan area

The Burlington, IA-IL Micropolitan Statistical Area, as defined by the United States Census Bureau, is an area consisting of two counties – one in southeast Iowa and the other in west central Illinois, anchored by the city of Burlington, Iowa.

As of the 2000 census, the μSA had a population of 50,564 (though a July 1, 2009 estimate placed the population at 48,412).

Burlington Bees

The Burlington Bees are a Class A minor league baseball team, based in Burlington, Iowa, that is an affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels. The franchise was founded in 1889. The Bees have played in the Midwest League since 1962. The team was first known as the "Bees" from 1924 to 1932 and again from 1954 to 1981. The Bees nickname was revived for the 1993 season and remains to this day. Their home since 1947 has been Community Field in Burlington, Iowa. Baseball Hall of Fame members Billy Williams and Paul Molitor played for Burlington.

Burlington Junction Railway

The Burlington Junction Railway (reporting mark BJRY) is a Class III short line railroad which was chartered in 1985. Originally operating on the southernmost 3 miles (4.8 km) of the former Burlington, Cedar Rapids and Northern Railway mainline in Burlington, Iowa after abandonment by the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad, it provides short freight hauling, switching operations, locomotive repair, and transloading services, the latter currently handling over 3,000 carloads a year. Typical commodity types transported include chemicals and fertilizer. The BJRY's primary interchange partner is the BNSF Railway.The BJRY power fleet currently numbers twenty locomotives. Other Burlington Junction Railway assets include 50,000 feet (15,000 m) of warehouse space, as well as various types of bulk material handling equipment such as augers.

As of February 2010, the carrier operates seven various local industrial railroads:

Burlington, Iowa (Switch Carrier / Connection to BNSF)Trackage: 3 miles (4.8 km)LeMars, Iowa (Switch Carrier / Connection to CN)

Mt. Pleasant, Iowa (Switch Carrier / Connection to BNSF)Trackage: 1-mile (1.6 km)Ottumwa, Iowa (Switch Carrier / Connection to BNSF)Trackage: 1-mile (1.6 km)Quincy, Illinois (Switch Carrier / Connection to BNSF & and Norfolk Southern )Trackage: 7 miles (11 km)Rochelle, Illinois (Trackage owned by the City of Rochelle / Connection to BNSF & UP)

Montgomery, Illinois (Switch Carrier / Connection to BNSF)

Fenton/Valley Park, Missouri (Switch Carrier / Connection to BNSF)

Burlington station (Iowa)

Burlington station is a train station in Burlington, Iowa, United States, served by Amtrak, the national railroad passenger system. The station, located at 300 South Main Street, is open 24 hours a day, but there are no Amtrak personnel or ticket machines at the station at any time: tickets must be purchased in advance or on the train from a conductor. The station acts as transfer hub for Burlington Urban Service (B.U.S.), a local municipal bus system; riders can transfer to every bus route in the B.U.S. system.Designed by the well-known Chicago-based architectural firm of Holabird and Root for the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad (CB&Q), the station was built in 1944 and exemplifies the streamlined mid-century modern aesthetic that came into vogue in the 1930s. The two-story station, constructed of reinforced concrete, is faced in buff-colored Wisconsin Lannon fieldstone laid in a random ashlar pattern. Areas for train and bus passengers were located on the lower level while the upper story contained offices for the general superintendent, freight agent, division engineer and telephone and telegraph operators. There was also space for trainmen to sleep and relax between shifts.The two-story waiting room features walls clad in a buff Montana travertine; durable terrazzo floors; and black marble accents and trim. On one wall of the waiting room, the CB&Q inscribed many of the major achievements that it had accomplished in its namesake city, such as the testing of inventor George Westinghouse's air brakes in 1887.

Following a flood in the summer of 1993, the city purchased the building from the Burlington Northern Railroad in 1994 and undertook a series of renovations including roof repairs and the installation of new windows. A “Friends of the Depot” group also formed to help the city maintain the structure and encourage ideas for its adaptive reuse. Using more than $1,000 donated by Amtrak, the Friends organized work days in 2011 and 2012 during which volunteers painted the depot's exterior trim and caulked windows.

Church of St. John the Baptist (Burlington, Iowa)

The Church of St. John the Baptist is an historic church building located in Burlington, Iowa, United States. Together with St. Paul's Church in Burlington and St Mary's Church in West Burlington it forms Divine Mercy parish, which is a part of the Diocese of Davenport. The parish maintains the former parish church buildings as worship sites. St. John's was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.

Dennis Cohoon

Dennis M. Cohoon (born March 29, 1953) is the Iowa State Representative from the 87th District. He has served in the Iowa House of Representatives since 1987.

Des Moines County Court House

The Des Moines County Court House located in Burlington, Iowa, United States, was built in 1940. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003 as a part of the PWA-Era County Courthouses of Iowa Multiple Properties Submission. The courthouse is the fourth structure to house court functions and county administration.

First Congregational Church (Burlington, Iowa)

First Congregational Church is located in Burlington, Iowa, United States. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976. The church is also a contributing property in the Heritage Hill Historic District.

Henderson County, Illinois

Henderson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 United States Census, it has a population of 7,331. Its county seat is Oquawka.Henderson County is part of the Burlington, IA–IL Micropolitan Statistical Area.

James W. Grimes

James Wilson Grimes (October 20, 1816 – February 7, 1872) was an American politician, serving as the third Governor of Iowa and a United States Senator from Iowa.

John Joseph Seerley

John Joseph Seerley (March 13, 1852 – February 23, 1931) was a one-term Democratic U.S. Representative from Iowa's 1st congressional district in southeastern Iowa.

Born on a farm near Toulon, Illinois, Seerley moved to Iowa in 1854 with his parents, who settled on a farm in Keokuk County.

He attended the common schools, and graduated from the University of Iowa at Iowa City in 1875.

While serving as principal of Iowa City High School in 1876, he enrolled in the University of Iowa College of Law, graduating in 1877.

He was admitted to the bar in 1877 and commenced practice in Burlington, Iowa.

He served as City solicitor of Burlington from 1885 to 1890.

In 1888, he won the Democratic nomination to challenge incumbent Republican Representative John H. Gear, who was seeking re-election to a second term representing Iowa's 1st district. This would be the first of three consecutive races between the two. Gear won the 1888 general election. Two years later, however, Seerley unseated Gear as part of the 1890 democratic landslide, becoming one of six Democratic U.S. House members from Iowa in the Fifty-second Congress. In 1892, however, Gear again ran against Seerley. Like all four Democratic freshmen from Iowa, Seerley lost his bid for re-election. He served in Congress from March 4, 1891 to March 3, 1893.

Seerley resumed the practice of law in Burlington, serving again as City solicitor from 1893 to 1895. He was also interested in banking and agricultural pursuits. He remained active in Democratic Party activities, serving as a delegate to the 1920 Democratic National Convention.

Seerley died in Burlington, on February 23, 1931. He was interred in Aspin Grove Cemetery.

His son and namesake, Major John Joseph Seerley Jr. (1897–1943) served with distinction in World War I and World War II, losing his life while serving in the latter.

He was the grandfather of George Irving Bell.


KDMG (103.1 FM "Big Country 103.1") is a radio station that broadcasts a country music format. It serves the Burlington, Iowa area. The station is owned by Pritchard Broadcasting.

Maryann Mahaffey

Maryann Mahaffey (January 18, 1925 – July 27, 2006) was born in Burlington, Iowa. Mahaffey attended, and graduated from Cornell College in 1946. While in college, during the summer of 1945, Mahaffey worked at Poston Internment Camp as a Recreation Director. Influenced by her early work experiences, Mahaffey decided to attend the University of Southern California to obtain a masters degree in Social Work. While a student in the School of Social Work, she met Herman (Hy) Dooha, whom she married in June 1950. After Mahaffey and Dooha graduated in 1951, they moved to Indianapolis where Mahaffey began work with Girl Scouts of America. She successfully ran for election in 1973 for Detroit City Council. Mahaffey was one of a few members of the Democratic Socialists of America to be elected to public office.She served on the Detroit City Council from 1973 until 2005, from 1990 to 1998 and from 2001 to 2005 as council president. She was the last white female city council president of Detroit. In both terms as council president, she proved to be a very controversial leader. It was under her that a majority of Detroit's public housing projects were shut down - most notably, the Brewster-Douglas projects in 2004, which are still vacant- and the city's crime and abandonment rates almost tripled; though she resisted this strenuously. However, she oversaw redevelopment of several inner city neighborhoods, and championed construction along the Woodward Corridor.

Mahaffey was active in many organizations related to nutrition, women in politics, peace, and ending discrimination.

She died on July 27, 2006 from health complications related to leukemia, aged 81.

Notre Dame High School (Burlington, Iowa)

Notre Dame High School is a private, Roman Catholic high school in Burlington, Iowa. It is located in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Davenport.

St. Paul's Catholic Church (Burlington, Iowa)

St. Paul's Catholic Church is an historic church building located in Burlington, Iowa, United States. Together with the Church of St. John the Baptist in Burlington and St Mary's Church in West Burlington it forms Divine Mercy parish, which is a part of the Diocese of Davenport. The parish maintains the former parish church buildings as worship sites. St. Paul's Church and the rectory are contributing properties in the Heritage Hill Historic District listed on the National Register of Historic Places. St. Paul's School was also a contributing property in the historic district, but it has subsequently been torn down.

West Burlington, Iowa

West Burlington is a city in Des Moines County, Iowa, United States, adjacent to the Mississippi River city of Burlington. The population was 2,968 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Burlington, IA–IL Micropolitan Statistical Area.

Climate data for Burlington, Iowa
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 30.6
Average low °F (°C) 13.1
Average precipitation inches (mm) 1.3
Source: worldclimate.com[19]
Municipalities and communities of Des Moines County, Iowa, United States

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