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The territory of Iowa was established in 1838. Settlers started to stream in to this area in 1840. The very early families to settle in the Big Creek area on their arrival found the remnants of an abandoned Waukonsa

Indian village, rich soil, large stands of hardwoods

and a water source large enough to power multiple

mills. One of those families was George and Hester Beebe and their children who stopped in the Big

Creek area on their way to Utah. The settlement

became known as the 'Big Creek Settlement.' They

built a mill in 1849 (1874 photo). 1850 the Beebe's donated land for a town square when the settlement was plotted. 1857 the settlement was considered

along with Fort Des Moines for the Polk County seat designation. Through some political maneuvering

Fort Des Moines was chosen. 1863 John Adam

Schaal built a new two story school house from

native black walnut lumber harvested about 1-2 miles south of the building site, the area is currently the Sandpiper Recreational area, for the Big Creek settlement. 1875, with the population of 630, the town incorporated and became Polk City; named after the 11th President of the United States James Knox Polk,

In 1883 the bandstand was built in the town square.

This bandstand was restored in 1997 and continues

to serve as a focal point for the community. During

1894 the city bought the schoolhouse, which was replaced with a new school built in 1893, to become

city hall. The structure has served as city hall for the community since. The old school house has become one of the longest serving municipal buildings in the state of Iowa.

Visit Polk City and enjoy the historic sites.