Back when America was new, there was one deal that pushed immigrants on through rain, sleet, and snow: the promise of free land.
The only catch? They had to conquer the wild west.
After arriving, they lined up on their horses with all of the other eager travelers and when the gun fired, they raced.
This was called a land run. The largest one in history began with more than 100,000 people pouring into the Cherokee Strip of Oklahoma to claim the land they would build their home on. That was 1893.
More than 200 years later, the state of Iowa has given America a blast from the past. “Why? How?” you may ask.
Well, Iowa made a huge offer — if you are willing to move to Marne, population 120, the city will give away a residential lot for absolutely free.
The only catch? You have to build a new home.
“I care about the town,” the mayor said. “It gets to a point where it takes so many households to keep the lights on.”
Mayor Randy Baxtor is the city’s largest property owner. He owns about a quarter of the town and often buys and sells homes.
Unfortunately, many small rural towns are dying out. Developers don’t show up to rebuild inventories and as community leaders struggle with aging houses and no new construction, the population decreases.
“We face so many challenges … if a town doesn’t roll up their sleeves and do it themselves, it’s not going to be good,” said a former legislator and current mayor of Fayette. “We’re going to see a lot of theses small towns fade away.”
If you’ve been looking to build a brand new house and would like some free land – Iowa is just the place for you.
Not only would you make out like a bandit, you’d be supporting a great cause for wonderful people in the process.
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