Pioneer Cabin

Joseph Kelly of Monroe, Wisconsin was known as the second settler entering what is now Floyd County, Iowa in the summer of 1850. At that time, where Charles City now stands, a Winnebago Village supporting 150 wigwams (called Timber River Village) occupied the area.

Joseph Kelly is known to be the founding father of Charles City, Iowa. Mr. Kelly purchased hundreds of land acres in Floyd County along what was to be named by early explorers as the Red Cedar River. He built a saw-mill in 1854 and opened a grist-mill in 1856.

Mr. Kelly purchased this property, where the Red Cedar Lodge now stands, from a US Government land office on September 25, 1853 in Dubuque, Iowa. Mr. Kelly was involved in the ownership of this acreage until he sold to George W. Perrin on December 30, 1865 or at the conclusion of the Civil War.

An old log cabin still stands at the center of the lodge property. Historians believe it is a Norwegian built cabin erected in 1855 or perhaps earlier. The Red Cedar Lodge is fortunate to share this precious piece of Iowa history with the community and our guests. We will preserve its presence and work to utilize its historic value for years to come.  

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