Rockwell City Chamber & Development
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In 1876 Rockwell City, platted on the only high ground within a one-mile radius of the center of Calhoun county, was founded and became the county seat of Calhoun County Iowa.
When the Illinois Central Railroad was built in Calhoun County in 1870, the counties northern towns of Manson and Pomeroy had grown and become rivals of Lake City for the county seat. In 1876, this came to a head and it was voted to put the courthouse as near the center of the county as possible.
The first courthouse in Rockwell City was completed for less than $2,000 and also served as a schoolhouse.
In 1880, town founder Mr. Rockwell learned that F.M. Hubbell was bringing his railroad as far as Jefferson, Iowa. Rockwell went to Des Moines and promised Hubbell half of the town lots if he would bring the railroad to Rockwell City. The first train arrived August 7, 1882, and the population doubled that year.
The Calhoun County Courthouse adorns the city square in the center of Rockwell City.