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Midwest living at its best!

Welcome to a town full of history and midwestern hospitality. Independence dates back to June 15, 1847, when the state legislature named this very location the county seat of Buchanan County. Because of the approaching 4th of July holiday, they choose Independence as the name, and to this day we still proudly say that "America's Fame is in Our Name!"

By 1853, Independence had 12 residents, a few stores, a sawmill, and a blacksmith. By the end of the decade, we were a thriving entrepreneurial community of 1500 residents along with mills, machine shops, churches, hotels, stores, a post office, and a courthouse.

The well-known Wapsipinicon Feed Mill started its operations in 1854 and still stands today as part of the Buchanan County Historical Society, which is open for tours and events during the summer months.

Horse racing came to town in 1866 and with that Independence became even more popular. In 1889, thousands of spectators were present to watch the most anticipated horse racing event ever between Independence’s own Allerton and Axtell, the fastest racehorses in the world. The sale of Axtell gave way for owner Charles W. Wiliams to purchase 120 acres and build a kite-shaped race track on the west end of town. In August 1890, over 225 horses were present for the inaugural race at the Rush Park race track and over 10,000 people were in attendance.

Before the turn of the century, the booming town became home to the 3-story Gedney Hotel and Opera House, the Independence and Rush Park electric street trolley, Iowa Hospital for the Insane, Illinois Central Train Station and Depot, and the Iowa Steamboat.

Residents and visitors alike enjoy looking back at the community’s progression through its 175+ years of inhabitance. As Independence continues to grow, we are now home to over 6000 hard-working, family-oriented residents. And with many amenities such as the Buchanan County Health Center, Buchanan County Safety Center, Independence Police and Fire, Independence Light & Power Telecommunications, East Central Iowa Rural Electric Cooperative, superior parks & recreation, municipal airport, public pool and library, railroad, and many community service organizations, Independence truly exemplifies why residents proclaim “America’s Fame is in our Name.”

Independence is conveniently located within a short drive of Waterloo and Cedar Rapids. We invite you to visit our community and experience the quality of life that Independence and Buchanan County have to offer.

Thank you Silver, Gold & Platinum investors!