Hardy is a city in Humboldt County, Iowa, United States. The population was 47 at the 2010 census. Hardy had its start in the year 1881 by the building of the Cedar Rapids, Iowa Falls and Northwestern Railway through that territory.
In the beginning, there was a question of what to call this small village. Some people thought the name "Pleasant Valley" would be appropriate, until one evening in September.
In the early days, it was customary for the homesteaders to hire a herder to care for their cattle. Every morning, each family would drive their cattle to the area where the herder intended them to graze. Then each evening, they would return to get their own cattle. This particular evening, Alfred James had not yet arrived to gather his cattle. As the train approached from the west, some of the cattle were on the track and the train was derailed and the engineer killed. Since then the town has been called Hardy, in honor of the engineer, whose name was Mr. Hardy.
The school house was erected in the fall of 1883, at the cost of $600. The first teacher was Mary Garahan with an attendance of seventeen children.
The Post Office was originally located at the house of J. H. Foley, in Vernon Township, and was then known as Viona. It was moved to the Hardy location in April of 1882, J. H. Foley continued in the office of Postmaster, although the business was attended to by W. H. Foley, his son.
The Methodist Church of this town predates the life of the village. In 1865, Rev. John Robbins of Goldfield, Wright County, came to this neighborhood and held services in an old log, school house. Located just south of the residence of John Foley.
In the past years Hardy has had: two grocery stores; drug store; dentist office; Doctor's office; three gas stations; two garages; Post Office; blacksmith shop; lumber yard; hotel; bank; two lockers; two truck lines; two corn Shellers; a movie house; three tank wagon services; two livestock buyers; machine & welding shop; two crews of carpenters; Humboldt county maintenance shed; Fire station; three cafes; meat market; billiard hall; dance hall; barber shop; dray line; two creamery stations and poultry shop.
Over the years, Hardy has had many fires. At an early date almost all of the west side of Main Street burned. The first store built on the east side was destroyed by fire many years ago. Years later, the garage on the east side burned, causing the bank building next to it to be torn down. The school house burned in the winter of 1936.
In 1965, the town businesses consisted of one cafe, owned by Mr. & Mrs. Keith Brayton, operated by Esther Bird and was doing a good business; one gas station, operated by Kenneth Hirsch and owned by William Walkner; a D-X tank wagon, owned and operated by William Walkner; A Farm Service tank wagon, operated by Donald Carroll of Luverne. Each serving a large area of farmers through out the community. Plumbing & Heating store, owned and operated by Lee Wilson. Seger grocery store, owned and operated by Virgil Seger. Harold Pannell operated the road maintainer for Humboldt County, and was the town barber in the evenings. Hardy Lumber Company, owned and operated by Marshall Clancy. Hardy Livestock Express, owned and operated by Norman Skiye, and Irvin Tokheim of Thor. Johnson Welding shop, owned and operated by John H. Johnson. Humboldt County shed, with Gus Arne of Renwick, as Area Foreman and employing Harold Pannell, Raymond Ogan, and Curtis Weyer. L. & S. Fertilizer, operated by Levi Sandven and Company. Wanda's Beauty shop, owned and operated by Mrs. Keith Brayton. Fire Station, with Carl Lippolt as Fire Chief. Vorland's Truck service, owned and operated by Kenneth and Herman Vorland. Hardy Co-op Elevator, and Carl Lippolt was the manager and Martha Wilson and John Larson were the bookkeepers. Other regular workers were Clyde Gist, Earl Thompson, and Dale Hocket. One carpenter crew, with Keith Brayton and Dick Hefty.
In 1965, Lee Wilson was the Mayor of Hardy. Town Council members were: Norman Skiye, Virgil Seger, Dick Hefty, Carl Lippolt and Harold Pannell. Martha Wilson served as the Town Clerk and Ruby Walkner as Treasurer. Postmistress was Evelyn Mack and Mary Walkner was the back up postal clerk.
The School was combined with Renwick, Vernon, Hardy, Boone and Lake Townships and was named Boone Valley Community School system. The Superintendent was Mr. Melvin Salmela of Renwick. First and Second grades were housed in the Hardy building. The kitchen crew, Edith Pannell, and Rosemond Hefty, prepared noon lunches. Two buses were stationed in Hardy. Mr. & Mrs. Donald Ellis were the drivers, also Donald was the janitor for the Hardy building.