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Eldora, Iowa
Eldora Downtown HD NRHP 09000297 Hardin County, IA.jpg
"Come and Explore"
Location of Eldora, Iowa
Location of Eldora, Iowa
Country  United States
State  Iowa
County Hardin
 • Total 4.28 sq mi (11.09 km2)
 • Land 4.28 sq mi (11.09 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
1,086 ft (331 m)
 • Total 2,663
 • Density 622.05/sq mi (240.17/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 641
FIPS code 19-24465
GNIS feature ID 0456266

Eldora is a city in Hardin County, Iowa, United States. The population was 2,663 at the time of the 2020 census. It is the county seat of Hardin County.


Eldora was platted in 1853. It was incorporated on July 1, 1895.

The name Eldora was given to the town by a local mother in honor of her dead infant daughter. It is derived from the Spanish name for "the gilded".


Eldora is located at 42°21′37″N 93°6′5″W / 42.36028°N 93.10139°W / 42.36028; -93.10139 (42.360155, -93.101325).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.33 square miles (11.21 km2), all of it land.


Designated as having a humid continental climate, this region typically has a large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. Precipitation is relatively well distributed year-round in many areas with this climate. The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Dfa". (Hot Summer Continental Climate).


Historical populations
Year Pop. ±%
1870 1,268 —    
1880 1,584 +24.9%
1890 1,577 −0.4%
1900 2,233 +41.6%
1910 1,995 −10.7%
1920 3,189 +59.8%
1930 3,200 +0.3%
1940 3,553 +11.0%
1950 3,107 −12.6%
1960 3,225 +3.8%
1970 3,223 −0.1%
1980 3,063 −5.0%
1990 3,038 −0.8%
2000 3,035 −0.1%
2010 2,732 −10.0%
2020 2,663 −2.5%
Source: and Iowa Data Center
U.S. Decennial Census
The population of Eldora, Iowa from US census data

2010 census

At the 2010 census there were 2,732 people, 1,079 households, and 671 families living in the city. The population density was 630.9 inhabitants per square mile (243.6/km2). There were 1,275 housing units at an average density of 294.5 per square mile (113.7/km2). The racial makup of the city was 94.8% White, 2.0% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.7% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.7%.

Of the 1,079 households 27.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.7% were married couples living together, 8.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 37.8% were non-families. 33.1% of households were one person and 17.7% were one person aged 65 or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.87.

The median age was 41.6 years. 26.5% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 20.4% were from 25 to 44; 25.8% were from 45 to 64; and 20.5% were 65 or older. The gender makeup of the city was 51.7% male and 48.3% female.

Parks and recreation

Eldora is located adjacent to the Iowa River and Pine Lake State Park.

Twister movie

The city is most famous for the filming of the 1996 movie Twister on location. The climactic final scene was shot at the old Follett house in Eldora which is now a private home.


The community is within the Eldora–New Providence Community School District, which formed on July 1, 1980, with the merger of the Eldora and New Providence school districts. As of 2019, it has a grade-sharing arrangement with Hubbard–Radcliffe Community School District and operates as "South Hardin Schools". South Hardin High School is located in Eldora. Mr. Michael Rundall serves as Principal (2016). South Hardin Middle School is located in Hubbard. Mrs. Sarah Nachazel serves as Principal (2019).


The city is the location of the State Training School for Boys, a school for male juvenile delinquents.

Notable people

  • George C. Armstrong, Illinois state senator and newspaper editor; born in Eldora.
  • George Gardner Fagg, Senior United States federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit; born in Eldora.
  • Jonathan Hole, actor in vaudeville, radio, TV, and film; born in Eldora.
  • Mona Van Duyn, winner of the 1991 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry and the 1992–1993 U.S. Poet Laureate; grew up in Eldora.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Eldora (Iowa) para niños

National Hispanic Heritage Month on Kiddle
Famous Hispanic aviators
Manuel J. Fernandez
Robert Cardenas
Richard G. Candelaria
Oscar F. Perdomo
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