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Latest Joe Wilkinson Iowa Stories

2008-07-03 00:00:13

By Joe Wilkinson Iowa DNR On a sunny morning at Big Spring, everything appears normal. The big wooden sign welcomes visitors to the Department of Natural Resources trout rearing station, along the Turkey River near Elkader. A closer look, though, and the signature of the 2008 Flood appears. A cornstalk is lodged overhead in the welcome sign, carried there by the wall of water spilling over a levee 40 yards away. "After the 1991 flood, we added 18 inches to the levee. Still, the river...


Word of the Day
humgruffin
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'