Beaver, Iowa, is located along highway 30, 8.4 miles west of Ogden. As of the 2000 census, it had a population of 53 persons, living in the .3 square mile city limits. It is a tiny Iowa town sinking into transition at a now faster rate. Many of its buildings are unoccupied, not maintained, and are gradually falling apart and rotting away. It was refreshing to see lilies continuing to grow in front of houses where they have been growing for decades, seeming normal by themselves, while all around them the town is dying.
This was a large two story house, that is still holding its walls together, despite the fact that its roof and second floor has caved in. The front of the house shows a distinctive arch doorway, a bit unique for the time period in which it was built.
This quaint one story house also had colorful lilies and showed decorative features such as the curved shingles on the window overhang, and colorful red trimming on the windows themselves. Notice the upper window sections are comprised of 20 small panes of glass and one larger one in the middle. I wondered what the story may have been behind the woven basket that sits looking out from the inside of this house that once was a home.
The original K-12 school for Beaver is still standing, or rather its walls are. Through the arched front doorway you can see a staircase leading to the second floor. I am sure there would be lots of interesting things to see in here, but it would be very unsafe to be inside.
This grain elevator is the only business enterprise in Beaver, and is relatively new and since it sits right on a major rail line, it is strategically placed for farmers in the area to sell their grain.
This house is located in the south east corner of Beaver, and its occupants have erected this patriotic display that will likely stay up all year long. What will happen to Beaver is rather easy to predict, as painful as it may be to others to do so. Unfortunately there are many towns of this size and larger in Iowa and other states with rural areas, and they all are finding themselves caught in the same downward spiral, as we see in Beaver. Despite the gloom and doom it was refreshing to see the flags, the lilies, the new water tower, and the grain elevator, and for a few moments to reflect upon what Beaver was like fifty years ago.