was created in 1851 from territory formerly embraced in Fayette and was attached
to Boone in 1853. It lies in the second tier south of Minnesota in the sixth
west of the Mississippi River and was named for John Hancock, President of the
Continental Congress. Several tributaries of the Iowa River take their rise in
the county and the east fork flows through the east side. A number of small
lakes are found in various sections, among which are Twin Lakes, Crystal Lake
and Eagle Lake.
On the 9th of September, 1854 Anson Avery made a claim at Upper Grove
and in October, George Nelson located near him. The following year
Reuben and Orick Church, Thomas and Malcom Magill and Benoni Haskins
joined the settlement. In September, 1855, John Mabin and Jacob Ward
settled in a grove on Lime Creek near Ellington. The first settlers at
Crystal Lake were Edwin Trumbull and Myron Booth who arrived in 1865.
The county contains sixteen townships, making an area of five hundred
seventy-six square miles, and was organized in June, 1858, by the
election of the following officers: R. P. Rosecrans, judge; George
Loupee, clerk; Reuben Church, treasurer,, and Benoni Haskins, sheriff.
On the 4th of November, 1865, John I. Popejoy and James Goodwin were
appointed commissioners to select a site for the county-seat. They
located it where Concord now stands. A tract of land was donated to the
county by Thomas Seymour and in May, 1867, was platted and named
Concord. Previous to the selection of Concord the county business had
been transacted at Ellington, where in 1860 W. E. Tucker and Mr. Tobin
had established a newspaper named the Hancock Sentinel. A brick
courthouse was built at Concord in 1868. The Milwaukee Railroad was
built through the county in 1869-70, running a mile north of Concord,
where in July, 1870, John Mabin laid out a town named Graner. Britt is
a flourishing town on this road near the middle of the county, In the
southeast part of the county the town of Goodell is located on the line
of the Cedar Rapids Railroad.