The Governor Has Arrived

We are pleased to announce the arrival of the “Governor” to the City of Grimes. Local artist John Brommel was able to complete delivery of the massive sculpture to the south sports complex last Friday. Assisted by the Public Works Team they competed installation of anchors and mounting hardware to secure the piece to a prepared concrete slab. The size and scale of the piece made delivery a challenge and even required the artist to coordinate moving a power line to safely get it out of his studio. This project has been in progress for many years, but we are excited to finally bring it home to Grimes!

The piece was inspired by the likeness of James Wilson Grimes, Iowa’s third governor and our great cities names sake. The art work is made entirely of stainless steel which required countless hours of cutting, grinding, and detailed fabrication. The final step was applying a heat treated patina, and several layers of clear coat to protect the piece from elements. The art work will be lighted, and the remaining site work will be completed this spring once weather allows.

We are in the process of determining a date for a formal dedication of the sculpture. Additional details will be posted on the City Website.


About Governor Grimes

JAMES WILSON GRIMES, Iowa's third governor, was born in Deering, New Hampshire, on October 20, 1816. He was educated at the Hampton Academy and at Dartmouth College. He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1836, and established a successful legal career in Burlington, Iowa. Grimes entered public service in 1836, serving as the secretary to the Indian Commission at Rock Island, Iowa. He also served as a member of the Iowa Territorial House of Representatives from 1838 to 1839 and again from 1843 to 1844, and was a member of the Iowa General Assembly from 1852 to 1854. Grimes won the 1854 Whig gubernatorial nomination and was sworn into office on December 9, 1854. During his tenure, a hospital for the insane was established at Mt. Pleasant, the capital was moved to Des Moines, a new constitution was created in 1857, and new laws were endorsed that benefited banks, businesses, and schools. Also, the state historical society was provided for, as well as libraries, state colleges and universities, and federal grant money was secured for railroad construction. After leaving office on January 13, 1858, Grimes was elected to the U.S. Senate, serving from 1859 until 1869, when he resigned due to failing health. Governor James W. Grimes died on February 7, 1872, and was buried at the Aspen Grove Cemetery in Burlington, Iowa.