Location And Boundary Of The County—Elevation And The Subject Of Drainage—The Groves And The Prairies—The Soil And Local Minerals—Springs And Natural Gas—Stock And Poultry Productions—Evidences Of The Existence Of Coal—Thickness Of The Drift.
Who leads a quiet country life;
Discharged of business, void of strife !"
ON the north of Story County lie the counties of Hamilton and Hardin, and on the south Jasper and Polk, while on the east and west are Marshall and Boone, respectively, thus enclosing an area of 576 square miles in a perfect square of sixteen townships, all with a slight inclination toward the south and east. The most elevated point is probably in the north part of Warren, near the north county line, and the lowest where the Skunk and Indian Creeks pass the southern boundary and emerge into Polk County. There is no doubt, too, that the center of the State lies in some part of the southwest quarter of the county, presumably in Nevada or Indian Creek Townships.
The Skunk River, legally known as Chicauqua, with its branches, drains the two west tiers of townships, excepting a part of Milford and a small part of Palestine, while Indian Creek, with its branches, waters the two east tiers, and parts of Milford and Grand, and excepting a part of Sherman, New Albany and Lincoln, the last-mentioned township being drained by Minerva Creek. The lower half of the Skunk River averages a depression of two and one-half miles in width, while a similar portion of the Indian averages less than one mile in the same feature. In the order of length and size the streams would be as follows: Skunk, emptying into the Mississippi; East Indian, about the same length, but not so large, into the Des Moines; West Indian, into East; Squaw Creek, into Skunk, below Ames; Long Dick and Bear Creeks, in Howard Township, into Skunk; Keigley's Branch, into Skunk, in La Fayette; Walnut Creek, in Washington, and Ballard Creek, in Palestine and Union, into Skunk; Dye's Branch, in Sherman, into East Indian; Clear Creek, in New Albany, Willow and Wolf, in New Albany, and Minerva Creek, in Lincoln. All are rather sluggish, and become in many cases dry in seasons of drouth, while in wet seasons they are frequently over-