A Town of History
Located on the Big Sioux River in Sioux County, Hawarden, Iowa has a population of about 2,500. Named in honor of the leading British statesman of the 19th Century, William Gladstone (who came from Hawarden County, England), in 1887 the town of Hawarden was incorporated after it had annexed the nearby village of Calliope in order to form one larger community. However, historic Calliope Village has been preserved and attracts many visitors to view its 14 buildings including the original post office, the Community Church, a stagecoach depot, courthouse and jail. Each year, Hawarden hosts “Big Sioux River Days” on Labor Day weekend when Calliope Village comes alive with tours and activities.
Hawarden’s residents are proud of their strong faith community that includes ten churches. The strength of those residents’ community spirit is easily seen as well in the town’s well-kept City Park in which the Hawarden Area Veterans Memorial was built to remember the names of 1,030 local veterans who have bravely served their country. The West Sioux School District provides education for the citizens of western Sioux County including the towns of Hawarden, Ireton, and Chatsworth. Just 6.5 miles northeast of Hawarden is Oak Grove—a picturesque 101-acre outdoor recreation area adjacent to Big Sioux Park, comprised of 278 acres that offer panoramic views of the Big Sioux River Valley. Together, the 379 acres allow access to the Big Sioux River, large outcroppings of Sioux Quartzite, and have electric and nonelectric campsites, hiking trails, park shelters, and educational programs held by the Sioux County Conservation Department.