The famous outlaw Jesse James once robbed a bank in Corydon, Iowa in 1871. It was the first bank robbery in the state's history.
Woodbury County, Iowa has a rich and diverse history that dates back thousands of years. The area was first inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Omaha, Pawnee, and Dakota Sioux. In the 18th century, European settlers began exploring and settling the region. Woodbury County was officially created in 1851, named after Levi Woodbury, a U.S. Supreme Court Justice and Secretary of the Treasury.

During the mid-19th century, Woodbury County played a significant role in the expansion of the railroad. The construction of the Chicago and North Western Railway and the Sioux City and Pacific Railroad brought economic growth and population influx to the area. Sioux City, the county seat, emerged as a major transportation hub and trading center. The city quickly developed industries such as meatpacking, flour milling, and agriculture.

Woodbury County was deeply impacted by the Civil War, with many of its residents enlisting in the Union Army. The nearby Battle of Floyd, fought in 1862, highlighted the county's strategic location along the western frontier. Throughout the war, Sioux City served as an important supply center and training ground for troops. After the war, the county experienced an agricultural boom, with farmers benefitting from improved transportation networks and increased access to markets.

In the 20th century, Woodbury County continued to grow and diversify its economy. The discovery of oil in the early 1900s brought an oil refining industry to the area. The county also became known for its production of corn and soybeans, with agriculture remaining a vital component of the local economy. Today, Woodbury County is a thriving community characterized by its historical significance, agricultural heritage, and economic resilience.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Woodbury County, Iowa.

  • 1851- Woodbury County is established by an act of the Iowa Territorial Legislature.
  • 1856- The city of Sioux City is incorporated as the county seat.
  • 1862- The construction of the first railroad in Woodbury County begins.
  • 1868- The first courthouse in Sioux City is built.
  • 1870- The population of Woodbury County reaches 10,000.
  • 1893- The Sioux City Public Library is established.
  • 1917- The construction of the Sioux City Municipal Auditorium begins.
  • 1933- The construction of the Sioux City Public Museum begins.
  • 1948- The population of Woodbury County reaches its peak at 160,000.
  • 1972- The first Woodbury County Fair is held.
  • 1990- The population of Woodbury County is 105,000.
  • 2003- The Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center opens in Sioux City.