virtual museum

Virtual museum archives

About the virtual museum

The Iowa Department of Transportation's virtual museum gives visitors a chance to enjoy the art, artifacts, awards, and architecture gathered by the Iowa DOT over the decades. We hope that visitors will see a new side to the Iowa DOT after taking the virtual tour. In the coming years, the Iowa DOTs virtual museum will tell the stories behind remarkable bridge and roadway designs, public art, and natural artifacts, and national awards earned by the Iowa DOT in the course of building and maintaining Iowas transportation infrastructure.

High Trestle Trail Bridge

Building a bridge that gets bikers, joggers, walkers, and even strollers across the Des Moines River would have been enough for some, but the ambitious committee members wanted the High Trestle Trail Bridge to stand out on a national level.

Lincoln Highway concrete markers

In 1928, the Boy Scouts of America placed concrete markers along the Lincoln Highway to honor Abraham Lincoln.



Origin of the Lincoln Highway

The Lincoln Highway was the first transcontinental highway in the United States, stretching from New York City to San Francisco.



1919 Army transcontinental motor convoy

Seeing the importance of French roadways during World War I, the U.S. War Department set out to test the viability of American roads for a defense scenario. The War Department selected the Lincoln Highway for this convoy. A member of the convoy included Lt. Col. Dwight D. Eisenhower, who later became a World Was II general and U.S. president.

"Woman's Head" (1976)

An Ames icon first took shape in 1976, on the northeast corner of the Iowa DOT's complex. In 1998 and 1999, it was transformed into a more durable material. Learn how the Iowa DOT became home to Ames' most famous public art work: "Woman's Head."



"Woman's Head" (1999)

An Ames icon first took shape in 1976, on the northeast corner of the Iowa DOT's complex. In 1998 and 1999, it was transformed into a more durable material. Learn how the Iowa DOT became home to Ames' most famous public art work: "Woman's Head."



Artist statement: Dennis Patton

Patton's commitment to sculpture stems from his belief in the greatness of art and "how it touches the intellectual spirit which only humans possess."

U.S. 20 bridge awards

The U.S. 20 bridge team received important national recognition for their innovative work on the project



U.S. 20 bridge

The Highway 20 bridge over the Iowa River used an innovative approach to solve significant environmental issues and improve the road system in northeast Iowa.