I am from Iowa and proud of it!   In fact, I am going back next week to attend a family wedding in a round barn.  I’ll take photos for you because I know that it will be wonderful!

Sometimes people think that all there is in Iowa is corn or they get it confused with Idaho and ask me if we have lots of potatoes.  What Iowa does have is one of the most beautiful governor’s mansions in the United States.  It is a real treasure and I want to show it to you.

Terrace Hill, also known as Hubbell Mansion, Benjamin F. Allen House, and Iowa Governor’s Mansion, is the official residence of the Governor of Iowa. Located in Des Moines, Iowa, it is an example of Second Empire architecture. The home measures 18,000 square feet (1,600 m²). It sits on a hill overlooking downtown Des Moines, and has a 90 foot (27 m) tower that offers a commanding view of the city. The house became a National Historic Landmark in 2003.

The inside is just as beautiful as the exterior.  The front hall is truly grand.  In fact, the mansion sits on Grand Avenue.


For several years, first ladies of Iowa have opened the mansion for tea.

If you are a chandelier lover, this one in the drawing room is quite spectacular.

The grand staircase leads to family quarters. Here it is fully decorated for Christmas for the Holly and Ivy tour.

This room off of the main parlor is also decorated for Christmas.

Governor Terry Branstad just drives down Grand Avenue to go to the Iowa capitol building.  As a small child I would watch for the gold dome whenever we were in Des Moines.

The inside of the dome is breathtaking.

Once, we lived in Des Moines and I heard the most wonderful story from an elderly friend.  She said that on a street near Terrace Hill, a home owner was out raking leaves.  Up drove a long black limousine.  The driver rolled down the window and sought directions to a private home.  In the back of the car, the home owner recognized Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, and Harvey Firestone.  They were on their way to California to see their friend, Luthur Burbank.  I wonder if they were invited to Terrace Hill for dinner?

Create and be happy!