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Graettinger, Iowa facts for kids

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Graettinger, Iowa
Location of Graettinger, Iowa
Location of Graettinger, Iowa
Country  United States
State  Iowa
County Palo Alto
 • Total 0.75 sq mi (1.95 km2)
 • Land 0.75 sq mi (1.95 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
1,253 ft (382 m)
 • Total 832
 • Density 1,103.45/sq mi (425.90/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 712
FIPS code 19-31800
GNIS feature ID 0457009

Graettinger is a city in Palo Alto County, Iowa, United States. The population was 832 at the time of the 2020 census.


Graettinger had its start in the 1880s by the building of the Burlington, Cedar Rapids and Northern Railway through that territory. The land was originally owned by Dr. Alois Graettinger who was a German physician who had immigrated to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He gave the land to the railway under the condition that the town were to be named after him. Members of the Graettinger family still live in the town. They are descendants of Dr. Graettinger's brother, Blasius, who was a stone cutter by trade but moved to Iowa to farm.

Graettinger is the location of the oldest Labor Day celebration in the state of Iowa. Each year, the town celebrates with a parade, carnival, street dance, variety show, queen coronation, raffle drawing and various other events.

About Dr. Alois Graettinger

Dr. Alois Graettinger, one of the oldest and well-known German-American physicians, was born in Passau, Bavaria, January 10th, 1834, as the son of a small peasant. He attended the local school and “gymnasium” of his native city, until at the age of 18 years he entered the University of Munich, absolving the “biennium practicum,” after which he was assistant in the obstetrical clinic of the university for one year, before he left for Milwaukee in 1857. In 1865 he took the degree of M.D. at the Chicago Medical College and in 1878 that of the University of Munich. In 1894 he was chosen president of the “Society of German Physicians” in Milwaukee. On account of ill health he left for California in 1898, giving up practice and tilling the soil until his death, due to arterio-sclerosis, Oct. 23, 1907.


Graettinger is located at 43°14′17″N 94°45′4″W / 43.23806°N 94.75111°W / 43.23806; -94.75111 (43.238180, -94.751217) near the Des Moines River.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.77 square miles (1.99 km2), all of it land.


Historical populations
Year Pop. ±%
1900 388 —    
1910 556 +43.3%
1920 779 +40.1%
1930 777 −0.3%
1940 928 +19.4%
1950 1,016 +9.5%
1960 879 −13.5%
1970 907 +3.2%
1980 923 +1.8%
1990 813 −11.9%
2000 900 +10.7%
2010 844 −6.2%
2020 832 −1.4%
Source: and Iowa Data Center
U.S. Decennial Census
The population of Graettinger, Iowa from US census data

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 844 people, 382 households, and 227 families living in the city. The population density was 1,096.1 inhabitants per square mile (423.2/km2). There were 440 housing units at an average density of 571.4 per square mile (220.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 98.5% White, 0.4% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.5% from other races, and 0.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.8% of the population.

There were 382 households, of which 28.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.8% were married couples living together, 8.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.6% were non-families. 35.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 17.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.21 and the average family size was 2.85.

The median age in the city was 37 years. 24.5% of residents were under the age of 18; 8.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.5% were from 25 to 44; 24.1% were from 45 to 64; and 19.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.6% male and 51.4% female.


Graettinger is served by the Graettinger–Terril Community School District, formed by the 2010 merger of the Graettinger and Terril Community School Districts.

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