KNOXVILLE, Iowa- Governor Terry Branstad has proclaimed March 23-29, as Dixie Cornell Gebhardt Week in Iowa. That week leads up to March 29th, which is Iowa Flag Day.
Gebhardt is the designer of the Iowa State Flag. On March 28th, the community of Knoxville will observe Iowa Flag day at the childhood home of its creator.
"It took several years to design the flag," said Roslin Thompson, who is the Knoxville Public Librarian. The Library in Knoxville is partnering with the Chamber of Commerce to sponsor a community celebration in her honor. "The State Flag was adopted by the Iowa Legislature in 1921," said Thompson.
Gebhardt designed the flag as a regimental banner for Iowa Guardsmen serving along the Mexican border in 1917. Troops there did not have a banner to display while serving. The design was authorized by Gov. William Harding and the Iowa State Council of Defense in May of 1917.
"She spent a lot of time her in Knoxville, which was her childhood home," said Thompson.
The celebration will be held at the Dixie Cornell Gebhardt House on 2nd Street just south of the downtown square. The event will begin at 10 a.m. with a flag raising and musical performances. At 11 a.m. people are invited to bring a picnic lunch, there will be historical games, a history walk, and open houses for the Marion County Genealogical Society and the Daughters of the American Revolution. At 11:30 a.m. there will be a celebrity pie auction.
"This home is of historical significance to the town of Knoxville," said Thompson. "We're very proud of the designation as the birthplace of the Iowa Flag, so we celebrate Iowa Flag Day to honor her."