Senior Travelers Stop In Charles City

1280px-Welcome_Sign_Charles_City,_IowaCharles City, Iowa with a population of around 8,000, is the seat of Floyd County. I am from Iowa and we called it “Chuck City”. There are plenty of things for senior travelers to do and see in Charles City. The latest development is the first ever whitewater course in the state of Iowa which features three different drops.

Located on the site of a Winnebago Indian village, Charles City was originally named “Charlestown” for the son of the first-known white settler to the area, Joseph Kelly in 1851. By 1852, twenty-five other settler families had joined Kelly and a community was born. The town name changed, first to “St. Charles” and then to “Charles City”.


Charles City is known for the role it played in the history of the American tractor. A native son Charles Walter Hart, whose father owned three local farms, met Charles H. Parr in college.

After graduating from the University of Wisconsin, Hart and Parr developed a two-cylinder gasoline engine and set up their business in Charles City in 1897. It was in this place in 1901 that the term “tractor”, with Latin roots and a combination of the words traction and power, was first coined by Hart and Parr.

 Seniors Visit A Great Midwest Rural County Museum


Although more famously known for producing tractors, the Hart-Parr company also made some of the first washing machines. Selling for $155.00 in the 1920s, the buyer had the option of ordering either an electric or gasoline engine. The Floyd County Historical Museum preserves the plant’s history and memories in an extensive collection of documents and artifacts.

Unexpected adventure awaits senior visitors in Charles City. River fun around Charles City is more than just the WhiteWater Riverfront Development, there is flat water paddling and Charles City is the heart of everything with the Cedar River.

The Floyd County Museum in Charles City is one of the Midwest’s largest rural county museums, with over 50,000 artifacts depicting early and recent prairie life, both agricultural and industrial.


Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the Museum’s home is the former Dr. Salsbury’s Laboratories. Ever heard of him? The Museum owns Floyd County’s oldest existing building, the Muchlar cabin, built in 1853.

 Seniors Visit A Frank Lloyd Wright Home

The city has been devastated by tornadoes several times in its history (1858-1908-1968).


The Alvin Miller house that Frank Lloyd Wright designed lies  on the banks of the Cedar River. It is quite famous, as there are only a handful of his homes in Iowa.

Senior travelers, put Charles City on your travel bucket list as you drive through Iowa.  You will find it to be welcoming and you can experience some good old fashioned Iowa hospitality. -jeb

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