The Story of Reinbeck: Local man writes book about Reinbeck’s history

Ray Rannfeldt, a longtime Reinbeck resident, recently published "Stories of Reinbeck," a history of the town with a few fictional flourishes thrown in for good measure. (Michaela Kendall/The Grundy Register photo) 

REINBECK - Though some people might say that nothing exciting has ever happened in a small, rural town like Reinbeck, local author Ray Rannfeldt says that’s the opposite of the truth. In fact, Rannfeldt is so dedicated to sharing the intriguing, and even surprising, history of Reinbeck that he decided to write a book about it.

 

Rannfeldt is a longtime resident of Reinbeck, and retired John Deere employee who has spent the last few years doing research and digging in to the town’s history, before he finally decided to write a book about it, which is now available for purchase.

 

Rannfeldt’s book, called “Stories of Reinbeck,” is a fictional historical account of how Reinbeck came to be, beginning with the Native Americans who lived on the land, up to some of the first white men to settle in the area, and spanning until the 1950s.

 

Ranndeldt’s book includes real, historical events and persons, with some fictional elaboration to keep readers entertained.

 

“There is so much history in town that is not known, or not appreciated,” Rannfeldt said. “There’s some fascinating stuff, and some very colorful characters in our town’s past. When I was researching, I just kept digging and digging, until finally I had so much information I just decided I needed to make it into a book.”

 

Rannfeldt says he’s always been interested in history, and the journey to writing his first book started about three years ago after he began a project to bring the local cemetery directory up to date.

 

“I walked the cemetery many times and found about 700 people who were not on the directory,” he said. “So that prompted some curiosity in me, and I started digging. Eventually I was able to get the whole directory up to date, but while I was doing that, I noticed a lot of gravestones that got me even more curious, so I started digging into the founders of the town and the early citizens, and the more I dug, more fascinating stories began to unravel, so that started the process for this book.”

 

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