the History & Business
J. J. Davies, 1869
St. Charles is a small village situated on
the Winterset and Indianola road, about twelve miles south east of
Winterset. It is located on a high prairie, near the timber of
Clanton creek. It contains about seventy houses, and about three
hundred inhabitants. The town was laid out on 07 Oct 1852 when George Hartman and Jesse
C. Young, who at that time owned the land on
which the town site is located, platted a town site on 80 acres.
For some time, the town had no name and several names were
suggested but in the end, St. Charles was selected, taken from the
town of the same namesake in Missouri.
The first house in St. Charles was
erected by John Byers in 1853. In a short time after the village
was laid out it grew into a flourishing place but, during the war
no improvements of importance were made. (For the little village
Charles was largely represented in the war, Capt. J. M. Browne
having raised a full company in that village and vicinity.) During
the last two years it has taken another start, and it is now
growing quite rapidly. The village is surrounded by one of the
best farming countries in the world. The soil, stone, timber and
water privileges surrounding it will compare favorably with the
most favored localities in the state. And, its central location
between Winterset and Indianola, in the midst of a well settled
farming community, make it a good point for business.
The village contains at the present time two hotels—one
kept by William Barton, and the other by M. E. Clanton; two dry
—Smith & McClure, and Browne &
Thompson; three resident physicians—Drs. A. B. Smith, L. J.
Forney, and Wm. M. Anderson; and also one grocery story; all of
which are doing a good business. It has also one saddle and
harness shop, one blacksmith shop, two cabinet shops, one wagon
shop and one boot and shoe shop.
It has three church buildings and one school-house, which
speaks well for the village. The religious denominations are the
Methodists, United Presbyterians and Disciples.
It has also a large three-story flouring mill, known as the
“Madison Mills.” This mill is owned by Messrs. McClure,
Ergenbright & Co., and it is doing a very extensive and
constantly increasing business.
and edited by Kent Transier