By Molly Moser
“I think I saw your farm in a magazine!” said callers to the home of Michael and Lynne Finnegan, of Colesburg. Their family farm, purchased by Michael’s grandfather in 1949, was featured in Our Iowa Magazine as it progressed through the annual “Focus on Iowa Photo Contest.”
Cedar Rapids based photographer Tom Nugent flew over the area last fall in search of the perfect shot. “I wanted to get a picture of Guttenberg, since that’s where my grandparents lived and where my mom grew up,” explained Nugent. Each summer, after a few weeks in a cabin an Abel Island, Nugent’s parents would go back to Cedar Rapids and he’d stay in Guttenberg with grandparents, Herman and Lenchen Ihm.
The winning shot, says Nugent, was one of the first he saw that day from the helicopter. “It looked like Grant Wood had painted a painting right there in the landscape,” he told The Press. He asked pilot Fred Lansing to turn the helicopter around so he could get the right angle.
“He couldn’t have taken the picture at a better time,” said Finnegan. “Because the farm was freshly mowed, the corn was just starting to mature, and there was early morning fog over the Turkey River.” This angle, he says, is one he often admires from Millville Road, as it shows both his farm and the intersection of the Turkey and Mississippi Rivers.