This Iowan Cartoonist Had A Park Named After Him
We all want to be remembered for something amazing, and Jay Norwood Darling is remembered for a lot of things. The big thing that stands out is his conservationist efforts. His work would be recognized by countless people, including a president!
Today a park is named after this Iowan.
According to the Almanac Jay Norwood Darling was not only a reporter for the Sioux City Journal but also a two time Pulitzer Prize winner. He won these for his editorial cartoons in 1924 and 1943. These are huge accomplishments, but it gets even better!
Darling was at heart a conservationist. In the 1930s, he was appointed by President Franklin Roosevelt to a federal commission on wildlife restoration, which is when he came up with the idea of the federal duck stamp program to raise funds for wildlife preservation, and even designed the first stamp himself.
Darling made such an impact that Franklin Delano Roosevelt appointed him as the head of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
On September 17th, 1950 Lake Darling State Park, near Brighton, Iowa was dedicated in Jay Norwood Darling's name.
“Ding” Darling himself “set the gate”—the ceremony by which the valve on a spillway is closed, completing the water impoundment process to create the lake. Lake Darling State Park is made up of more than 1,400 acres, including a 300-acre lake with 18 miles of shoreline. Camping, hiking, boating and fishing are popular activities there today.
Many Iowans are not only huge parts of history, but have affected it in many different ways. Ding was one of those people.
And that’s not the only recognition you’ll find for “Ding’s” conservation efforts. The J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge was named for him in 1967 on Sanibel Island, Florida, where he had a winter home.