In the fall of 1882 a railroad line was completed from Fort Dodge to Mallard. The depot was the first building on the land plotted as the town of Mallard, although George Inman had a small house on his property, but the exact location is not known and Joe Milread had a small shack in the neighborhood. Ed Kress lived five miles east and worked on laying the tracks to Mallard. He received $1 per day for his labor and use of his team of oxen. John Graff also worked for the railroad. The station was named "Mallard" by Charles E. Whitehead, president of the railroad, because of the great many "Mallard Ducks" in the area.

As soon as the railroad was completed to town, business places and homes were established. In the winter of 1882-1883 Wm. Hackenberg built the first general store and was the first postmaster. In 1883 Wm. Stafford also built a store, C.H. Sands opened a lumber yard, grain and coal business, Orrie (O.B.) Kendall built a hotel, and Chas. Zeigler built the first hardware store. Many other businesses soon followed on either side of Main Street (Inman Avenue) and along the railroad side-tracks. The sidewalks and crosswalks were constructed of heavy planks, but as they wore out they were replaced with brick or concrete materials. Some church services and public meetings were held in the depot and country schools until in 1888 and 1889 a Catholic Church was built, the next year a Lutheran Church was built, followed by a Reorganized Latter Day Saints church in 1899 [the orginal building still stands in good condition though no services are held]. The Methodist Church was built in 1900. In 1893 the Mallard Butter & Cheese Ass'n (The Mallard Creamery) was organized.

1895 - In April 1895 articles of incorporation were drawn up by Attorney Morling, Emmetsburg, for a fee of $1.50. In the records it is interesting to note that only the men voted. Forty men voted, 30 for and 11 against. Thus the town of Mallard became an incorporated town and it was recorded in Emmetsburg on July 19, 1895 at 5:30 p.m. There were 164 residents then. J.P. Mulroney was elected mayor, A.C. (Arvin) Sands was the first recorder, trustees were Chas. Zeigler, C.J. Hahn, R.A. Brownlee, G.A. Latt and G.L. Ashen. Frank G. Lodes was named marshall and John Buhacker, street commissioner.

Records indicate the first school was built southwest of town on the land owned by Ed Zaugg. In 1888 the school was moved to a mile northwest of Mallard and was known as the Fish School. Later it was bought by Fred Cross and added to his homestead cabin. The children from the town of Mallard attended the Zaugg and Fish schools before a school was built in Mallard.

The Rush Lake Cemetary was located where it now is. Bell Cross was the first person buried there. Fred Cross built the first fence around the cemetary. In 1900 two farmers, Wenzell Lodes, a Catholic and William White, a Protestant, each gave an acre of land from their adjoining farms for a Catholic Cemetery, at its present location. Peter Grethen Sr. donated the land for the present Ellington Township Cemetery at the present location and the first burial was in 1892.

1898 - Steiner and Hahn store was started.

1903 - The Mallard water system was started.

1904 - The Mallard Fire Department was organized.

1905 - January 18, The Farmers Elevator filed articles of incorporation. August 4, The Mallard Telephone Company filed articles of incorporation.

During the years that followed many businesses, some manufacturing, school, homes and people became part of the community as well as enterprising farmers to the area surrounding Mallard, Iowa, "The Home of the Friendly Ducks."

(The above history was taken from excerpts of the centennial book entitled, "Mallard, Iowa - The First Hundred Years", 1982)

 

 

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