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Remembering Colby Acres

Posted February 19, 2014 in Community Featured, Windsor Heights
Don Geier and his home on Colby Avenue.

Don Geier and his home on Colby Avenue.

When young Don Geier was graduating from high school, this Colby brick home was being built. The year was 1951.

It wasn’t until 14 short years ago that Geier moved into this corner home from the suburbs of Chicago.

“I have relatives here,” Geier says. “Although I’ve always wanted to live across the street from a big, beautiful courthouse, this home seemed to fit my needs.”

Geier looked at two houses in Adel and Winterset, both across the street from the courthouses. As luck would have it, this Windsor Heights home was on the drive back to his sister’s home after a long day of house hunting.

“I like the original hard wood floors this home has,” he says. “And Iowa has such clean air.”

Geier has collected numerous large antiques, some restored, some still in their original state. A carousel horse, restored in 1972, sits by his front window. An oversized Coke advertisement from the ’40s hangs in the dining room. The Old Glory Coffee advertisement is arranged in an antique box and hangs on the wall. Several three-foot-tall painted Indian figures are placed throughout the entire house.

007All this came about 40 years ago when Geier retired from the U.S. Postal Service. Now he’s interested in selling it at auction.

Not finished with his creative side, Geier still sees beauty in the lifestyle of yesteryear. Once inside his home, the paintings on the walls jump out as perfection. Numerous scenes of Windsor Heights’ early days — the first two stores in town, family picnics in the park and even a scene when Windsor Heights was once Colby Acres are all hand drawn by Geier, then painted and finally flawlessly detailed. The paintings are then framed with gold or royal blue paint as a border.

The living room is patriotic with flags in every painted picture. The dining room showcases the coffees, teas and beers of the 1940s, all painted with the same style of advertisement-like art. The kitchen is where you’ll find the 1910 Grape Nuts Cereal painting with a small blonde girl and very pronounced St. Bernard dog leading her to school.

And to think that all this self-taught painting came about from Geier’s recovery from a past heart attack.

“I certainly wasn’t going to sit around and wait for another one,” he says.





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