All About River Heights
The Facts and Evidences of River Heights
FROM THE BEGINNING, the objective was to find an actual city in the United States, which most matched the fictional city of River Heights.  From the first, valid arguments henceforth laid out, has allowed us to determine where to search for River Heights.  Given previously, were reasons to comprehend why there was a need to make real Nancy's treasured city.  Questions also asked, were in hopes of receiving an answer to these very inquiries that have haunted the reader of the Nancy Drew series for so long, and then answered from the evidence found inside those books. Some of that evidence has indirectly disproved parts of the myths, legends, and folklore that have tenaciously surrounded those mysterious books from their mystical and more obscure past.  Extra hints also presented, were to help substantiate why these questions came to being in the first place!
About two centuries past, John Adams articulated expressively concerning the necessity to permit facts and evidence to steer actions and policies. He understood, "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." Very wise words these, as they subscribe to us an understanding that the facts always speak for themselves and if a person has the proclivity, can find the facts and seek the truth in almost all matters with the evidence, despite what a persons passions or inclinations may be!

Therefore, keeping these sagacious expressions in mind, we will go on to distinguish how our evidence stands to the facts at hand. Let us return to River Heights and at once, examine some of our tables that illustrated the clues found in our little blue and yellow books. All the tables in this report can stand alone on their own processed data without much more elaboration.  However, noticeable are the numbers at the bottom of these tables that show totals in their respective columns. We will use those numbers to drive home the point of where River Heights is and see how our elected cities faired along with these numbers.

Table 1, Terrain descriptions of River Heights:




New Jersey-6 (7)

All of our cities did well in the terrain table with the exception of New Jersey.  Table one shows that this state is not a mid-west state, so therefore we almost eliminated NJ for that reason.  However, we found evidence in a revised text that stripped Nancy of her daughter of the Middle west status and thus allowed New Jersey to stay in the test. All states in this table received seven points each, although New Jersey showed only six, initially for the above rationale.

Table 2, Cities located near River Heights:




New Jersey-7
Iowa and Illinois show the most cities that correlate with the fictional cities found in our books.  The evidence in this case suggested that since the original texts of the classic series favored naming more cities than the later texts, this gives the indication that the original and revised texts of the classic series most matched these two states for that reason.  Whereby Mildred Wirt Benson wrote the majority of the old text, this also suggests the reasoning behind the information presented here in view of the irrefutable fact that the vibrant descriptions of River Heights, still now only slightly altered, are virtually the same in the revised texts of the series!

Table 3-Weather patterns of River Heights:

All states received 2 points each, as it was shown how the states mentioned in this report were all located in the northern US (driving snow), and additionally are near large bodies of water (intense thunderstorms), permitting them all to have the weather patterns so vividly described in the mystery books.

Table 4, Landmarks and businesses of River Heights:

Iowa City-8




East Orange-4

All cities were pretty much equal to their counterparts except for New Jersey once more.  This state was missing a few of the more important pointers that are necessary in determining where River Heights is, namely of not having a nearby river to draw a parallel with the story bound Muskoka River.

Table 5, Streets and roads of River Heights:

Iowa City-2




East Orange-3

We will use the ACTUAL totals in this case, since the argument of whether the authors might have changed the identifying labels of the streets is only a possible scenario of the facts presented than otherwise proven.

Table 6, Destination Cities

Iowa/Iowa City-2


Ohio/Cleveland, Toledo-9

New Jersey/East Orange-2

The numbers calculated here are by determining which of our special cities, by this traveling data, are affected.  It cannot be determined by the factors of which city actually might prove to be River Heights, merely by the presumptuous times, directions, and distances involved.  Rather, by this determination, by how many times the elected city could be a possibility per trip.  However, Table 6 should not count as factual evidence!  There are too many formulated variables included in the data to assert as bona fide facts and evidences.  Still further, without this unusual determination, the other true evidences presented would somehow seem merely circumstantial!  With this reasoning, perceived is the necessary consent to allow certain components of this data entering into the evidence at hand; and rightly permitted, since without a shadow of a doubt, there are those intrepid sleuths whom, in the past while searching for Nancys long-lost city, have endeavored in this same, very incredible method!

Also, note that Ohios two cities, combined in this case, will only receive one point for each destination city mentioned (per trip).  No matter how one tries to interpret this traveling data, Ohio obviously is the state in which Nancy leaves from most of the time, especially if one takes into account Nancys many excursions to New York City, NY!  It is difficult to separate these destination cities in a later list so instead, let us first just look at the total points of the states involved --and decisively exclude from here on out, the travel information.

Iowa-21 points

Illinois-16 points

Ohio-18 points

New Jersey-16 points

Unmistakably, by using the "point system" from the three tables --terrain, cities, and weather patterns from the elected states-- we can observe that Iowa becomes the tentative home state of River Heights with 21 points.  Note this data collection is from all text versions of the classic series.  Now we will see how our elected cities perform while excluding the states data.

Iowa City-10 points

Chicago-18 points

Toledo-19 points

Cleveland-11 points

East Orange-7 points

Toledo largely correlates with River Heights and startlingly; the unassuming and previously unpretentious Chicago is now a mere one point behind!  This information is from the data found in the landmarks and streets indices (all text versions.) Now we will observe the combining of states and cities next, presently including all the above tables data.

Iowa/Iowa City-31 points

Illinios/Chicago-34 points

Ohio/Toledo-37 points

Ohio/Cleveland-29 points

New Jersey/East Orange-23 points

With all the data presented from every table, we notice that Toledo, Ohio is our elected city that most correlates with Nancy Drews illustrious city of River Heights!  We do not need to include the travel data nevertheless, to illustrate how Ohio could, by all data points from the classic series, really be the home state of River Heights.  This gives credence to the supposition presented earlier that all authors draw from their own real-life experiences to utilize in their writings.  These facts stand behind this assumption because we must remember how Mildred Wirt Benson had lived for a short period in Cleveland, Ohio first, then moved on to Toledo, Ohio and therein wrote the largest part of the original texts while living in that city!  Not only that, but with evidence present beforehand, it also appears that Harriet Stratemeyer Adams had intentionally kept River Heights in the state of Ohio, while ghostwriting the remaining later texts!  Therefore, this evidence indisputably verifies false, and puts to rest the conspiracy theorist, which might believe that Harriet Adams and Mildred Benson feuded over where Nancys city was located --and how Harriet may have intentionally plotted to put River Heights in her own home state of New Jersey, once Nancy was officially hers.

We also observe, with no question, how Chicago, Illinois can easily be seen as the runner up in this data, thus allowing the official stance that River Heights is a small city located near Chicago, Illinois, thereby finally allocating a relationship with the original classic series, by only three points difference!  It is then surely no real misfortune that Iowa City, Iowa is then third in our list of states!  New Jersey as a champ, struggled to make River Heights its own, but obviously was lacking in many of the key elements needed to categorically declare that Nancys city is located there.

Glancing back over this entire paper, one would surely notice that the previous arguments presented do clearly apply!  We see that on the premise, which determines River Heights location merely by which author who wrote the story, and how this amazingly works out to be a correct statement. This account also lets us to know the reasons presented are correct, those giving us specific states for River Heights to be located.   Further, one really does become aware of how the hypothesis presented here in some ways correlates with the states and cities that the two main ghostwriters lived in, even if that very proposition was somehow reversed engineered!  As much as the author of this composition would have passionately prized to see that Iowa City was the elective city for River Heights, it is against his inclinations to dictate the facts and evidence to suit his own wishes.  Therefore, the evidences herein related, are to the best of his abilities and true to the findings.

In addition, note that the evidence presented is not all inclusive of the clues found in the classic stories, those that might not have appeared.  The gauntlet has been thrown, and this is a challenge that perhaps other and more methodical sleuths might be able to find more obsequious clues and to determine further that there could be a city, which is a superior and more suitable counterpart to Nancys beloved city of River Heights, in any of the texts, or series!  In addition, here is an invitation to use this information at your disposal.

The NancyDrewSleuths were feeling despondent knowing that The Mysterious City of River Heights had ended.  Suddenly remembering they always felt this way after solving a mystery, wondered when another would perhaps come their way.  It would not be long before the inquisitive sleuths found themselves highly engrossed in another more updated mystery that came to be known to Nancys chums as The Mystery of the Parallels: The Classic Series vs. Nancy Drew, Girl Detective.

*Though it was promised that this report would show books that caused the reader distress in displacing the location of River Heights, this is a teaser to keep you looking back to the web site "All about River Heights," which will include this and other information in future updates! ~Sleuth Ned