The Iowa State Fair, one of the largest and oldest state fairs in the country, was first held in 1854 in Fairfield, Iowa. Today, it is held in Des Moines and attracts more than a million visitors each year.
Carroll County, Iowa, was initially settled by European immigrants in the mid-19th century. German and Irish immigrants were among the first to establish communities in the area, drawn to the fertile land and opportunities for farming. The county was officially incorporated on January 15, 1851, named after Charles Carroll of Carrollton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence.

In its early years, Carroll County faced challenges typical of a developing frontier region. However, the arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century transformed the county's transportation and commerce. The railroad brought new industries, including manufacturing and mining, while also facilitating the growth of small towns and farms.

The agricultural sector played a significant role in shaping Carroll County's history. The fertile soil and favorable climate allowed for the successful cultivation of crops such as corn, wheat, and oats. Farmers also raised livestock, with hog farming becoming particularly important. Grain elevators and processing facilities were established to support the agricultural economy, becoming vital to the region and contributing to population growth.

Over the years, Carroll County has emphasized education and civic life. Schools and public buildings were constructed, including the historic courthouse that still stands today. The county also had a notable involvement in politics, producing several prominent figures in Iowa's political landscape. Today, Carroll County continues to thrive with a diversified economy, a strong sense of community, and a rich history that is celebrated and preserved by its residents.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Carroll County, Iowa.

  • 1846: Carroll County is established in the Iowa Territory.
  • 1855: The first settler, Samuel Kirkwood, builds a log cabin in the county.
  • 1868: A town called Carrollton is platted, later renamed Carroll.
  • 1877: The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad reaches Carroll, boosting economic growth.
  • 1880: The population of Carroll County reaches over 13,000.
  • 1894: A courthouse is built in Carroll.
  • 1900: Carroll County's population peaks at around 18,000.
  • 1924: The Glidden-Ralston Consolidated School District is formed.
  • 1944: Swan Lake State Park is established.
  • 1953: Carroll Municipal Airport is opened.
  • 1968: Dedication of the St. Anthony Regional Hospital in Carroll.
  • 1975: The population of Carroll County reaches its highest level of around 23,000.
  • 1982: The Northwest Area Education Agency is established in Carroll.
  • 1998: Carroll County passes a vote to implement a countywide 911 system.
  • 2006: The city of Carroll celebrates its 138th anniversary.