Carroll County IAGenWeb
History Journal
Lidderdale History
taken from the Lidderdale Centennial Book
Compiled by Norma Berns for the Centennial Book
~ contributed by Dick Onken
~ transcribed by Ralph Leonard III (as published)
Main Street. Lidderdale. Iowa
'Looking North'

~ photo contributed by Ralph Leonard III
As the tracks were being laid for the Great Western's tremendous undertaking, Lanesboro was beginning to boom as the line was coming from the northeast.

In the summer of 1901, the railroad right-of-way was surveyed and the grade was built the following year, most of it done by horse and mule power. The rails were laid in the late fall of 1902.

Another town would be built along these rails and further southwest to Lanesboro on the highest point between Fort Dodge and Omaha. Four miles east and four miles north of Carroll. A name??

The new town in Sheridan Township is to be called Gliddendale. It's a pretty name and ordinarily would be unobjectionable. But it is too much like Glidden to be acceptable, it seems to us. There would be a confusion in mail matters and many annoyances would come out of the similarity of names. It is a question whether the department would accept that name for the post office and the railway company had better look into the matter before giving that name to the new town.

For years, the consensus was that it was named for Lord Lidderdale of England, an investor in U. S. railroads. But... there was a mystery!

In 1844, John Lidderdale of Russia sent his son William, born in 1832, to England to be taught modern languages and other subject necessary for a "Mercantile life." In 1857, William came to the U. S. and worked in the New York agency of Rathbone Bros. & Co., a long-established Liverpool Merchant house with extensive trading, shipping and financial business. Here he studied economics.

During "Hip" Kienapfel's term as Mayor of Carroll, he was pursuing the possibility of having a "sister city" in Russia and England. By some quirk, he saw the name Lidderdale in his resources and began a correspondence with Hal Lidderdale of London. Mr. Lidderdale was extremely interested and when he visited the U. S. a few years later, to visit "Hip" and his wife. Mr. Lidderdale had done some research on his own when he returned to London. In a letter to "Hip" in 1989, he wrote, "There is a mystery!" No one our name has been in the Peerage and the "Lord" must have attached itself to the Lidderdale by accident. But the Dictionary of Business Biography, 1985 make it quite clear that my uncle, the Rt. Hon. William Lidderdale, Governor of the Bank of England 1889-1892, who worked in the New York office of Rathbone Bros. 1857-1863, may well have invested money in U. S. A. railways before his governorship. His brother Francis, a prosperous merchant, also had American interest, and could have been a subscriber to the railroad.

The town was named "Lidderdale" and to date there has never been another such named town in all of the United States. Now you know "the rest of the story."

Lidderdale has the distinction of being the last major village or town platted in Carroll County and it is still in existence. The Great Western Railroad went southwest through town already established.

Land deeds recorded at the Carroll County Courthouse state that John and Anna Subbert sold 5.96 acres of land to the Mason City and Fort Dodge Railroad Co. on March 19, 1902 at 8 a.m. for $650.00.

The same day, the Mason City & Fort Dodge Railroad Co. purchased 2.96 acres from A. W. & Lillie F. Patterson and John & Catherina Sievers for $300.00.

The Iowa Townsite Co., a department of the Chicago Great Western office in Fort Dodge, published a plat map of Lidderdale by 1906 with 25 blocks. They named the east-west streets, starting on the south border which was the dividing line between Sheridan and Grant townships, the names Central, First, Second, Third, and Fourth Streets. The road that ran north and south through the town was named Main Street. North and south streets, starting from the west side were named Rohan, Sampson, Lee, Main, Robb, Healy, and Subbert Avenues.

A petition to incorporate the town of Lidderdale was completed in Oct. 1905. On February 8, 1906, An Act to Legalize the Incorporation of the town of Lidderdale, Carroll County, Iowa was published in the Carroll Times for four consecutive weeks.

Aug. 26, 1903 Carroll Newspaper:

The town of Lidderdale has made its appearance and new buildings may be seen many miles distant. Already several new business houses are enclosed and lumber is on the ground for others. There are two big elevators completed and ready for business and general stores and saloons are also ready. The town is located in one of the most productive areas of the county.

The one and only "Lidderdale" in the whole U. S. A. was on its way.

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