Quarter Mile Link
The Official History of Shady Oaks
Campground Cabin Camp, Gas Station and Eatery on
The Historical Lincoln Highway


The information presented here is summarized from the book Quarter Mile Link©, a documented history and reflections of Shady Oaks and the Rock Valley Community of Marshall County Iowa. The Quarter Mile section of road that has served since 1848 has shared its history so that it's story may be told about this special place which has served generations in the settlement and service of our county.

The complete book "Quarter Mile Link" by Mary Gift is now published here for you to enjoy in 8 sections:

Cover, Dedication
Section 1  Land Abstract & Rock Valley Mill
Section 2  The Rock Valley Neighborhood
Section 3  The Lincoln Highway and Rainbow Arch Bridge.
Section 4  Genre of Shady Oaks
Section 4  Genre of Shady Oaks: Act One, The Norton Years
Section 4  Genre of Shady Oaks: After the War, New Management
Section 4  Genre of Shady Oaks: Mobile Home Court Years
Section 5  The Golden Link, The Big Treehouse
Section 6  Reflections: Photos & Informative Memories
Section 7  Epilogue
Section 8  The Author Mary Gift


Map of the Rock Valley Community

The name Rock Valley Community refers to the geographic area which today includes Shady Oaks, the Historical Grove of Bur Oak Trees, and The Big Treehouse.



The Settlement of the Rock Valley Community

This section describes the The Rock Valley Mill, Rock Valley School, Rock Valley Cemetery, the Railroad, and Quarry. Information about the settlement of Marshall County can be found at this site.



The Lincoln Highway Era at Shady Oaks

The Lincoln Highway was developed on the main route through the Rock Valley community which had previously served as the Marengo to Fort Dodge stagecoach route. Information about the notable Rainbow Arch Bridge is included.



Shady Oaks Remembered

Photos and postcards from the Gas Station - Eatery and Cabin Camp can be found here.



Shady Oaks Today

Today Shady Oaks serves in the same capacity as it has since 1848. Shady Oaks Campground continues to serve as a memorable rest to travelers with RV campers, tents, and even an original restored cabin for overnight use. The Big Treehouse is a hobby that began in 1983 and continues to attract visitors from all over the world.



A Restored Lincoln Highway Era Cabin!

This cabin was constructed as one of the first 5 cabins in 1925 and was utilized as a garage from the late 1950's until 1996. After almost 2 years of restoration, it stands today as a functional symbol of the by gone Lincoln Highway Era at Shady Oaks. Take a look at a great overnight lodge while noting its amazing history and reconstruction.



Beautiful Grove of Oak Trees Recognized for History

In 1996, the bur oaks of Shady Oaks were recognized as famous and historical trees by the Iowa Department of Natural resources.



Located in Eastern Marshall County, Shady Oaks is situated along the banks of Brush Creek, a small stream that empties just a few hundred feet away into the larger Timber Creek. It is a landmark for residents in the County due to its namesake stand of large bur oak trees that shelter the grounds along the vintage section of highway. During the pioneer settlement days of the mid-1800's, the Lincoln Highway era of the early 1900's, and yet today, Shady Oaks continues to be an attractive place for people.



- - Please Visit These Related Pages - -

Shady Oaks Campground Page

The Historical Bur Oaks of Shady Oaks

The Big Treehouse of Shady Oaks Page