Iowa Homecoming History: 1922

Some 26,000 spectators watched Iowa defeat Minnesota 28-14 during the Homecoming celebration in Iowa City. Though the wet field couldn’t stop the Iowa attack, muddy roads did stop the fans on their way out of town. Local historian Irving Weber, 22BA, recalled the mess that resulted:

“Ten thousand people reportedly had driven to Iowa City for that game, under threatening clouds, praying it would not rain. Their prayers were not answered, and heavy rains came during the game.

“The dirt roads in all directions from Iowa City became quagmires, and the one to Cedar Rapids was the worst, with all its hills and the Iowa River. Five hundred cars were stuck between Iowa City and Cedar Rapids, and 1,500 fans were forced to sleep in their cars or seek shelter on the floors of the homes of friendly farmers.

“Some who were stuck close to the Interurban tracks left their stranded cars in the center of the road, sloshed through mud and water and caught the next Interurban, whether to Iowa City or Cedar Rapids. It didn’t matter which by then.

“On Sunday and Monday, farmers with teams pulled cars out of the mud. Many were taken to North Liberty where they were loaded on flat cars and shipped to Cedar Rapids or Iowa City. About 1,800 pounds of tire chains were shipped to North Liberty, which enabled some people to get out on their own. No wonder Iowa fans are so rugged today.”

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