605 Clinton St, Charles City, IA, 50616
$28,500 Sold for $29,500
c.1900 Affordable Home For Sale in Charles City, Iowa Under $29K
Charles City is known for the tractor.
Charles Walter Hart, a native of Charles City, grew up on his father’s farm. In fact, his father owned three farms. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin, Hart and his college roommate, Charles Parr, developed a two-cylinder gasoline engine. They founded the Hart-Parr Gasoline Engine Company in Charles City in 1897, and in 1901 they the word “tractor,” a coupling of the words “traction” and “power.” In 1903 the firm started by building tractors, and the oldest, a 14,000-pound tractor is displayed at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in Washington D.C. Hart-Parr also built some of the first washing machines. They sold for $155 in the 1920s.
At its peak in the mid-1970s, the Hart-Parr complex sprawled over 23 acres and employed almost 3,000 workers. The 1980s farm crisis led to its closing in 1993, but many of the homeowners and renters who lived on Clinton Street (where our featured house is located) worked for the tractor company in the 1920s and ’30s. The home’s double gables in the rear are interesting, but the beautiful interior trim is the home’s real standout feature.