Each August, the Iowa State Fairgrounds, home to America's quintessential state fair, becomes 400 acres of sights, sounds, and aromas. More than just a showcase for farm machinery, the fair has one of the world's largest livestock shows, hundreds of competitive events, first-class entertainment, and ever imaginable food-on-a-stick. The first Iowa State Fair, held in 1854 at Fairfield, drew 10,000 visitors, and attendance now tops one million each year. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it has been held at its present location in Des Moines since 1886. In the early 1900s, fairgoers could choose from a large selection of postcards, stick on a penny stamp, and mail them to friends to describe their blue ribbon, an exciting midway ride, or the great entertainment. Over 190 vintage postcards provide glimpses of the fair from the 1890s to the mid-1950s in The Iowa State Fair.