City of Allison, Iowa

About Allison

The following brief history of Allison was written by Allison resident Zach Mosher :

"Allison, Iowa was platted and recorded at the Butler County Courthouse in Butler Center on July 15, 1879 by John R. Waller. The land that would become Allison was owned by the Iowa Stock Farm until 1875 when five industrials, including Waller, bought up most of it. Like most communities of the time, Allison's founding was due in part to a railroad. In 1875, the Iowan and Pacific Railroad laid the initial bedrock for the transit system, but failed to complete the project. The Dubuque and Dakota Railroad Co. ended up completing the railway and on July 4, 1879, the first train ran through town.

In early Butler County history, the location of the county seat was a heated topic. Every town was interested in becoming the epicenter of activity, but there could be only one winner. As Allison was at the physical center of the county and contained a newly constructed railroad, the question for relocating the county seat was raised, and in the Autumn of 1880 voters of Butler County chose Allison as the new county seat. Allison edged out Butler Center with a vote of 1,529 to 1,264. On January 10, 1881 the county records were moved to Allison, and later that year a two story court house was constructed containing vaults, a court, and office rooms.

On December 5, 1898, a petition was signed by 98 citizens for a city water works bond. On January 9, 1899, an election was held and a majority 71 citizens voted for the bond. A well was dug on the court house grounds by Fremont Turned for $3,911.50.

On June 14, 1881, the Allison Tribune was first printed and the newspaper is now called the Butler County Tribune Journal - the oldest running business In Allison.

Some other interesting facts :
  • Allison was named for Senator William Boyd Allison who served in the United States Senate for 35 years.
  • As of 2010, Allison has a population of 1024
  • In the 1880 Butler County seat race, the towns competing for the court house were Allison, Bristow, Butler Center, Clarksville, and Shell Rock.
  • Butler County is the only county in the state of Iowa to not have a stop light, movie theatre, hospital, fast food chain, or a town that exceeds 2,000 people."

Allison Water Tower

A Brief History of Allison
Read a brief history of Allison as written by local resident and recent high school grad Zach Mosher.
More >>

Mural by Tom Ribble

Tradition with Vision
Check out the mural painted  by local artist Tom Ribble on the corner of N Main and 3rd St.
More >>