Celebrating Our Hometown

Small town Iowa, alive and well! Fertile defies the trend by being one of several small towns to grow in the last census. We really do have a lot to celebrate.

Citizens are proud to celebrate their hometown each year during Fertile Days. This year, Fertile Days featured a parade, a Walk/Run event, bed and golf-cart races, a live band, a free community meal, and several kid's activities including face painting and inflatable rides.

Fertile is a beautiful town. Located right on the Winnebago river: we have canoeing, fishing, and other great outdoor activities. Several weddings take place each year in the Rhodes Island Park, outlined by the Dam, Mill and footbridge.

Fertile is a great place for kid's to grow up. Forest City has a top-notch educational system with sports, theater, band and many more extra-curricular activities. Fertile's Little League is one of the best in the area!

Fertile is home to a great group of people. There is Fertile pride in every one of us!


As of the census of 2010, there were 370 people, 148 households, and 111 families residing in the city. The population density was 393.6 inhabitants per square mile (152.0 /km2). There were 161 housing units at an average density of 171.3 per square mile (66.1 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.8% White, 0.5% African American, 1.1% Native American, 0.3% Asian, and 0.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.9% of the population.

There were 148 households out of which 30.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.2% were married couples living together, 4.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 25.0% were non-families. 19.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 2.88.

The median age in the city was 41 years. 23.5% of residents were under the age of 18; 5.7% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.5% were from 25 to 44; 27.8% were from 45 to 64; and 17.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 51.9% male and 48.1% female.

read more

Rhodes Mill & Dam

Fertile was founded by William Rhodes, a Canadian who came to Iowa in 1858 and built a mill to process wheat into flour. Rhodes Mill was built on Lime Creek, now known as the Winnebago River.

The "History of Mitchell and Worth Counties," published in 1918 described the mill as being "34 by 42 feet in dimensions, two and one-third stories high, had three runs of stone, and a capacity to turning out 50 barrels of first class flour per diem." It is further stated in the book, "Lime Creek Rhodes Mill at Fertile has a fall of 11 feet and develops 70 horse power."

The mill operated into the 1930s. The building was restored in 1971. The building now has rooms for guest accommodations. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

read more