Sabula, Iowa, the Island City

This is an amazing location that I did not know about until I went by on my boat.  Sabula is truly an island city and the only one on the river.  Across the river is Savanna, IL.

Sabula is 1/4 miles wide and 1 mile long and connected by causeways to Iowa and Illinois.  

Legend has it that Isaac Dorman crossed the river on a log and decided to settle here.  Must have been quite a log and a strange wind/current that day.  Sabula was the site of a button factory - clam shell buttons.  Strangely it was also the site of hog butchering.  

Originally the island was surrounded by marshland, but when Lock and Dam #13 was put in the pool flooded the marsh and made the town in to a water surrounded island.  



The Geneology Trails site says: Commercial fishing is engaged in to a considerable extent with about 120,000 pounds of rough fish - carp, buffalo and perch - and about 25,000 pounds of dressed catfish being shipped annually.

The town was platted and recorded in Dubuque in 1837 by Wood, Brown and Swan after buying out Dorman's interest.

This was a site for Indian encampment and it was also known by the French as Prairie La Pierre   Carrollport and Charleston were the first names for the platted community.  
In 1846 a man named William Hubbel is reported to suggest a name that would not be a duplicate of any other town - Sabula, which was said to be the latin for sand. 

The town is also the Eastern most community in Iowa.


The bridge over the Mississippi River from Sabula to Savanna was the subject of this February 2013 AP report:
SABULA, Iowa — Illinois transportation officials are planning to give away — for free — a half-mile-long steel truss bridge built in 1932 that spans the Mississippi River between Sabula, Iowa, and Savanna, Ill. But there are conditions for those who want to take on a slice of history.
Before the Illinois Department of Transportation can demolish the bridge and build a replacement, it is required to offer the structure to anyone who promises to maintain it forever at its new location.
The bridge must be kept “in its historical significance in perpetuity” at a location approved by the Illinois DOT, said Mark Nardini, an acting environmental studies manager with the agency, according to report in The Dubuque Telegraph Herald on Friday.
The agency will approve how the bridge is moved, Nardini said. “We would also pay moving costs up to the cost of demolishing it.”
But it’s not clear who will take on the bridge, which is more than 2,400 feet long, 20 feet wide and 73 feet tall at its highest point. The offer is open to “any qualifying governmental or nonprofit agency,” he said.
“We don’t expect a lot of takers,” Nardini said, chuckling. “In the past 22 years that I’ve worked here, we’ve never offered anything this size.”
The bridge must be moved within 30 days of its replacement opening, and the U.S. Coast Guard needs the giant concrete piers holding up the old bridge to be removed too.
A replacement bridge will be built 100 feet south of the existing bridge. Construction for the $70 million project is scheduled to begin in 2015.


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