STATUTORY DATA CONCERNING PRESENT AND
FORMER COUNTIES OF THE
From Iowa Official
HAMILTON- Taken from Webster county, and comprises the same
territory as did
the latter before Yell was united with it, and formerly called Risley.
Created and organized in 1857, and Webster city made the county seat.
acts sixth general assembly, chapter 15. Named in honor of William W.
Hamilton, president of the senate in that general assembly.
WEBSTER- The name of the original county of Risley (now constituting the
county of Hamilton) was changed January 22, 1853, to "Webster,"
approved on that day, but which did not take effect until some time
afterward, united the counties of Yell and Risley into a new county to
called "Webster." July 1, 1855, half of the county of Humboldt was
Webster. January 8, 1857, townships 86-89, ranges 23-26, were
the county of Hamilton, and on February 26th the northernmost township
the remainder of the county was set off to the new county of Humboldt;
that the county of Webster, as it now exists, contains within its
part of the county first called Webster. In the year 1857 an attempt was
made to take another township from the northern end, so as to make
county of the same size as the former county; but the act aiming to
accomplish this was declared unconstitutional. January 22, 1853, Webster
county was attached to Boone. See acts fourth general assembly,
and 52; fifth general assembly, chapter 141; sixth general assembly,
chapters 15 and 147; seventh general assembly, chapter 42. See also
and Risley. Named in honor of Daniel Webster, then recently deceased.
YELL- The name of an extinct county which was established in 1851. It
comprised all of townships 86-89, ranges 27-30. The southern tier of
townships had been, in territorial times, a part of the county of
and the remainder a part of that of Buchanan. Attached to the county of
Boone January 22, 1853, up to which time it had remained for revenue,
election and judicial purposes attached to the county of Polk. In the
year it was united with the county of Webster, or Risley, into one
under the name of Webster. See acts third general assembly, chapter 9;
seventh legislative assembly, second session, chapter 101; fourth
assembly, chapter 9; seventh legislative assembly, second session,
101; fourth general assembly, chapters 12 and 52. Named in honor of Col.
Archibald Yell, who was killed at the battle of Buena Vista. He was the
second governor of the state of Arkansas.
RISLEY- In 1851, townships 86-89, in range 23-26, were constituted a new
county. It was attached to the county of Boone January 22, 1853, up to
time it had been attached to the county of Polk for election, revenue,
judicial purposes. See acts third general assembly, chapter 12. The last
named act also changed the name of the county to Webster. The
for this act made no change in county names. While it was under
consideration in the house, however, James W. Grimes, afterward
then a representative from the county of Des Moines, offered the
as an additional section: "SECTION 4. That the name of the county of
shall be changed to Woodbury; the name of the county of Risley shall be
changed to Webster, and the name of the county of Fox to that of
The section was adopted by the house and incorporated into the bill.
occurred December 20, 1852. On the 29th the bill was indefinitely
and a substitute therefor introduced. On the same day J.F. Rice, who
represented a district extending from Jasper county to Guthrie
and northward to the Minnesota line, gave notice of intention to
a bill for an act to unite into one county the territory now comprising
counties of Yell and Risley." On the 1st day of January, 1853, the
substitute above mention passed the house. One week later the bill
the senate, slightly amended. The house concurred in the amendment the
day. The governor affixed his approval on the 12th. The act was
the Capitol Reporter, January 19th and in the Iowa Republican, January
1853, on which day it accordingly took effect. Meantime, on the 10th of
January, Mr. Rice's proposed bill to unite Yell and Risley counties was
introduced. It was referred to a special committee, which reported a
substitute. Pending the consideration thereof, January 14th, on Mr.
motion, the name of proposed county was changed from "Sharon"
The next day the bill read, " A bill for an act to create the county of
Webster." The bill passed the senate January 18th and was approved by
governor, January 22d. Thus were passed two acts, one of which changed
name of the county of Risley to that of "Webster" and the other,
passed both houses after the first had been approved by the governor,
apparent forgetfulness thereof, united the counties of Yell and Risley
a new county to be called Webster. The first act took effect, as above
stated, January 22d, and the latter, which had no publication clause,
presumably on the 1st day of July. The territory comprising this county
constitutes the county of Hamilton. See acts fourth general assembly,
chapters 12 and 52; sixth general assembly, chapter 15.