The Iowa Veterans Home has always been recognized as a home for the state of Iowa veterans and their spouses who meet eligibility requirements for admission.
The Iowa Soldiers Home accepted its first resident in 1887 when the facility provided living quarters for displaced veterans of the War Between the States. Management of the home resembled life patterned after Army rules and regulations. Residents wore uniforms, marched in formation, stood inspections, ate at a mess hall, and went to bed at taps. They slept in open wards and needed passes to get by the sentry at the gates.
The residents' work contributed to the Home's self-sufficiency. Residents raised cattle and hogs, harvested and stored fruit and vegetables on a little over 160 acres. There was housing for the Commandant, Quartermaster, Adjutant, Surgeon, and the nurses available on campus.
The present-day focus of the Iowa Veterans Home--to provide professionally managed healthcare for aging veterans--began to emerge in 1890's with construction of the first infirmary. Six years later, a larger infirmary was built to satisfy the Home's increasing resident/patient population. Throughout the years, the Veterans Home continued to update the physical plan and provide the necessary clinical expertise to meet the ever-increasing healthcare needs for individuals admitted for care. Today with veterans living longer and requiring a wide range of healthcare services, skilled care is an important service offered by the Home.
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