The Garden Spot of Iowa
Named after historian and diplomat George Bancroft, the town of Bancroft, Iowa, was first surveyed in the fall of 1881. Serving as an important agricultural and railway hub for the area, numerous merchants established operations in Bancroft in that first year that included a grocery, lumber yard, iron forge and hardware store, as well as three restaurants, the Bank of Bancroft, and a hotel called the Globe House.
By the early 1900s, four general stores, two drug stores, and two hardware stores were located in Bancroft. Early telephone service was established around 1900, and a waterworks system had been in operation since 1895. Many of the merchants and business established during this period are still familiar to Bancroft’s residents today. These include the Bancroft Register newspaper; Farmers and Traders Savings Bank; Hatten Brothers; Kennedy Brothers Department Store; P. J. Nemmers; and Welp Cement Products.
With a population today of just over 800 people, Bancroft holds small-town values with big-town ideas. The town’s thriving main street businesses include a grocery store, hardware store, furniture store, home entertainment sales and service, pharmacy and restaurants. Service businesses include a dental clinic, chiropractic clinic, attorney, accounting/CPA office, spa, nursing home, fitness and health center, locally owned bank, as well as a medical clinic, EMS, and volunteer fire department. Residents welcome visitors to enjoy all of Bancroft’s many recreational opportunities in its beautiful parks, including the famed and historic Bancroft Memorial Ballpark. There is much to see and do in Bancroft!