Term: Helena, Iowa Co.
A community in Iowa Co. at latitude 431017N and longitude 0900120W.
Three Iowa County locations near the Wisconsin River have been called Helena. From 1828 to 1832, its first buildings existed about four miles southeast of the current village, where investors expected to prosper by manufacturing and shipping lead shot. These buildings were destroyed to make rafts in July 1832, when U.S. troops needed to cross the river during the Black Hawk War. In 1837 the village commenced again two miles northeast of its original site, and a well-known ferry, hotel, and other amenities flourished there. But in 1864 residents and merchants relocated closer to the railroad, two miles further northeast, at its modern location.
From Increase Lapham's 1844 Geographical and Topographical Description of Wisconsin:
"HELENA, is situated on the Wisconsin river, near the mouth of Pipe creek, seven miles below Arena, fifteen miles from Dodgeville, and about the same from the Blue Mounds. The most important business done at this place is the manufacture of shot, by the "Wisconsin Shot Company" -- the only place in Wisconsin here shot is manufactured. The view of the valley of the Wisconsin from the top of the shot tower at this place is described as very fine, extending a great distance. The river is seen winding through the rich, flat valley, which is bordered on both sides by high hills, with here and there rocky cliffs, separated by well wooded coves or vales. Besides the operations at the shot tower, there is much other business done at Helena, in the shipment of pig lead, and the receipt of lumber from the Upper Wisconsin, to supply the surrounding country."
View more information elsewhere at wisconsinhistory.org
View a related article at Wisconsin Magazine of History Archives.
[Source: U.S. Geographic Names Information Server]