Historical Secrets of the Iowa River Power Restaurant

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00:10:19 minutes

Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date

Spring 4-1-2014


Rhetoric 0020


Anna Williams


Details of the historical backbone of the Iowa River Power Restaurant are revealed including why the history should be recognized within the community.

The Iowa River Power Restaurant is a significant historical aspect in Johnson County. It is enriched with a lot of deep history that creates an explanation for how the restaurant came to be in the later years. Despite not being completely well known to visitors and citizens of Iowa City and Coralville, the Iowa River Power Restaurant deserves to be recognized historically as an important part towards the growth of the town. This podcast serves to detail the importance of recognizing history in a community, and the importance of preserving and cherishing an important past. The interviews of customers from the community demonstrate how the citizens of Johnson County feel about recognizing history, and that they too feel strongly about the importance of all history in every town.

Although simple in appearance from the exterior, the Iowa River Power Restaurant has a lot of rich and interesting history – even before it became a restaurant – and the history was part of the draw to the reason we chose it. A place so rich in history deserves to be recognized by all members in a community, and should be something well known by the citizens. We selected the Iowa River Power Restaurant because of the important past that deserves to be in the spotlight. When originally researching the Iowa River Power Restaurant, we found that it was even more important that we tell of a story of the history rather than a single narrative of an individual. The Iowa River Power Restaurant has such a rich history that is not always well known throughout the Iowa City and Coralville community, and our group thought that it was of significance to create a podcast that included details from the restaurant’s past. Because we did focus more on historical elements – including dates and statistics – that lent a hand in setting the scene of the history, we appealed to the logic of the restaurant in how it came to be the successful place it is today.

In addition, we also focused a lot on emotional appeals throughout the podcast. It was important to appeal emotionally because the Iowa River Power Restaurant is a community location and is a place that affects the entire area; we needed to make the audience feel as though the podcast’s aim was not something superficial and inapplicable. Especially in our main claim that the Iowa River Power Restaurant should remain unchanged and have its history appreciated and recognized by all community members, we needed to appeal emotionally to our audience in order to make them feel as though the Iowa River Power Restaurant was important to them. Our podcast towards the latter half focused on the importance of history within a community, and we were able to get our audience to “commit to an action” and “identify with” the idea of cherishing history within a community (Heinrichs 237). It allowed the audience to feel as though they identified with a group, and that the Iowa River Power Restaurant’s future was something that would affect them as well.

Just like how Heinrichs places an emphasis on organization, our podcast was also centered on how we would present our argument. But first, in order to establish our credibility – which is also an important Heinrichs topic – we centered the first part of the podcast on the history of the Iowa River Power Restaurant that we had previously researched. The historical details gives the audience a background for the context of the podcast as well as a sense of credibility from the speakers, and that the speakers were knowledgeable on the Iowa River Power Restaurant and made an effort to research the history with great depth. We followed an edited version of “Cicero’s Outline” that Heinrichs discusses, which in full includes an “introduction, narration, division, proof, refutation, conclusion” in order to create a successful outline and argument (Heinrichs 304). This outline is successful in creating a format that is important to making a clear path for a thesis. As we introduced the Iowa River Power Restaurant, narrated the history, supported with facts and research details, persuaded historical importance, and concluded with a lasting impression and statement, we created a strong argument that would have success in convincing the audience that the history of the Iowa River Power Restaurant is extremely important and deserves greater recognition.

In order to establish the correct amount of emotional appeal in the podcast, we knew we needed to interview community members that were very relatable to other Johnson County citizens and visitors. At the Iowa River Power Restaurant, there is increased difficulty with trying to interview customers who are solely at the restaurant to enjoy a nice evening – not to get questioned about the historical elements the restaurant presents. However, we were able to find a customer who could detail their opinion on the history and how they felt regarding the importance of history. Our group also went about interviewing either employees or individuals who at one point in time desired to work at the restaurant, and had filled out an application. By interviewing individuals who were community members themselves, we were able to establish an appeal to emotion within the podcast – which further helped to potentially gain audience support of a topic that is prevalent to them as well.

Thank You for Arguing guided our podcast mostly with appeals to credibility as well to emotion and logic. With these tools, our group was better able to create a long lasting and successful argument. Through our podcast, we hope that the Iowa River Power Restaurant will achieve increased recognition as a historical location that has helped to bring in visitors to the Johnson County region.


501 1st Ave, Coralville, IA 52241


Copyright © 2014 Mitch Kellen, Corey Osborn and Chelsea Ryan


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