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Arthur A. Small Papers

Identifier: MsC0254

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Scope and Contents

This collection, assembled by Arthur A. Small, contains legislative documents, handwritten notes from committee and legislative meetings, news clippings, reports, and other documents directly pertaining to the development of the Iowa Communications Network (ICN). It also contains a number of thematically related documents and news clippings regarding such topics as fiber optics, rural depopulation, and the "information highway of the future," which provide context for the milieu in which the ICN was developed.


  • Creation: 1984-1994


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply; please consult Special Collections staff for further information.

Biographical or Historical Information

During the 1980's, Iowa's legislature began exploring the exciting possibilities of cutting-edge communications technologies. The State of Iowa Communications Task Force and the Education Uplink Study Committee were two early efforts to determine what the state government's role in the field of communications technology would be. In 1989, a bill was passed that allowed for the construction of a statewide telecommunications network, which was to be completed in three stages. Parts I and II, begun in 1990, included 104 fiber optic endpoints--one per county (99), per state university (3), at Iowa Public Television (IPTV), and at the state capitol complex. These endpoints became operational in 1993. The ICN became a state agency in 1994, when the Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission (ITTC) was established by the legislature as the ICN's govening body. In 1995, implementation of part III began with the establishment of full-motion video sites in public and private school districts, area education agencies, and public libraries. As of 2007, the ICN continues to upgrade its technology as it administers a statewide fiber optics network that allows hospitals, state and federal government, public defense armories, libraries, schools, and higher education institutions to make use of telephones, high speed internet connections, and full-motion video.

Based in part on "The ICN Story - Bringing a State Together" (available at the Iowa Communications Network).


1.25 Linear Feet

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Background materials, research, proposals, and drafts of bills from the State Senator who served on the appropriations committee at the beginning of the ICN debate in the Iowa State Legislature.

Method of Acquisition

This Collection was donated to the University of Iowa Special Collections by Arthur A. Small in 2006.

Related Materials

In addition to the Papers of Arthur A. Small, the Iowa Women's Archives holds documents related to the ICN in Box 10 of the Betty Jean Furgerson Papers, and Box 26 of the Mary C. Neuhauser Papers. There are also numerous documents pertaining to the Iowa Communications Network in the University of Iowa Library's government publications, which may be found via the online catalog. Further information may also be sought through the Iowa Communications Network Homepage.

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Repository Details

Part of the University of Iowa Special Collections Repository

Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242 IaU
319-335-5900 (Fax)