Organizatin of Sac County, Iowa
From: History of Sac County, Iowa
By: William H. Hart
B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc.
Indianapolis, Indiana 1914

ORGANIZATION OF SAC COUNTY.

At and early period Sac county was a part of Buchanan county, except the southern tier of townships, which were in Benton county. It was established in 1851 and was attached to the county of Wahkaw (now Woodbury), January 22, 1853, up to which time it had been attached to the county of Polk. It was attached to Greene county in 1855. It was named in honor of the Sac tribe of Indians, who, with the Foxes, at one time possessed the entire territory of the present domain of the state of Iowa.

In 1856 Sac county, which had previously been attached to Greene county for all administrative purposes, was granted a separate jurisdiction. S. L. Watt was the first county judge and the county judge of those days was an autocrat, performing the functions of the present board of supervisors and county auditor, as well as those in part of the judge of the circuit court. H. C. Crawford was the first county clerk, and F. M. Cory the first treasurer and recorder (both offices being then combined in one).

Previous to the organization of the county the following persons were appointed commissioners to locate the county seat: C. W. Williams, T. E. Brown and Mr. Hux ford. They made selection of a point six and a half miles west of the east line of the county, on the west bank of the North Raccoon river, adjacent to a fine body of timber. This is now known as Sac City.

The first election for county organization was held at the house of Eugene Criss, April 7, 1856, when thirty seven votes were cast for the entire county. The officers then and there elected were: Samuel L. Watt, county judge; Frances Ayers, clerk of the district court; F. Lagourge, sheriff; H. C. Crawford, prosecuting attorney; F. M. Cory, treasurer and recorder; Jacob McAfee, drainage commissioner.

The next election in this county was that held on May 10, 1856, when there were twenty two votes polled for officers, as follows: Justice of the peace, Eugene Criss, of Jackson township; for trustee, John McAfee had twenty one out of the twenty two votes cast; for the office of township clerk, Henry A. Evans received twenty two votes and was declared elected; John Russell was elected as constable of the township; also, another constable was elected in the person of William Allen; an assessor was elected in the person of William Wine; twenty ballots were cast for the office of supervisor, Joseph Gammon being declared elected. The above returns were certified to by William Wine, S. W. Wagner and G. F. Browning, and attested to by W. J. Wagner, Henry A. Evans, clerks of the election, and County Judge S. L. Watt, Justices of the Peace G. F. Browning and Eugene Criss.

For Sac township the election at the above date resulted as follows: Trustees, William F. Lagourge, J. Williams, William Fulks; justices of the peace, J. Severn, J. K. Lane; constables, P. Fulks, J. W. Clark; township clerk, N. W. Condron; assessor, J. Condron; supervisor, William Lane. The judges of this election were E. Stills, P. D. Fulks and Lorin A. Goff, attested by H. C. Crawford and N. Condron.

A PROPOSED COUNTY SEAT.

In the first records of this county it is learned that an attempt was made to locate the seat of justice for Sac county at a point on section 36, of what is now Boyer Valley township, to the west and south of its present location. It was at almost exactly the center of the county. The record shows that Judge Samuel H. Riddle, judge of the seventh judicial district, living at Council Bluffs, on November 1, 1856, signed the following:

"A majority of the citizens of Sac county, as shown by a petition and certificate of the district court, prayed for the appointment of a commission to locate the seat of justice for said county. In accordance with the prayer of said petition, I, Samuel H. Riddle, judge of the seventh judicial district, hereby appoint Jesse Mason, of Crawford county; E. Buterick, of Carroll county; and Doctor Bonnie, of Calhoun county, who shall within two months after receiving this notice of such appointment, locate the seat of justice for said county of Sac as near the geographical center as may be, having regard for the present as well as the future population."

This report shows they located the county seat on a portion of section 36, township 88, range 36, but while the record seems silent as to just why this wads not carried out, it is found that another commission was appointed by Judge McFarland, at Jefferson, Greene county, the same consisting of Talmage E. Brown, Crandall W. Williams and Cyrus Huxford. This commission was ordered to meet at the office of the county judge of Sac county September 17, 1857, at two o'clock in the afternoon and, having taken the oath prescribed by law, they proceeded to locate the seat of justice, taking into account the present and future prospects of said county. This proceeding is signed by G. W. Cochran, clerk of the court for Sac county.

The commission thus appointed had the following report to offer on the performance of their duties:

"To the Honorable Judge of Sac County, Iowa: We, the undersigned commissioners appointed to locate the seat of justice for Sac county in the State of Iowa, make the following return to your Honor, to-wit: That we have the 19th day of September, 1857, located the seat of justice for and in said county, on the following described premises and lands to-wit: On all that certain tract of land in section 24, known as Sac City, with its present additions, together with the east half of the northeast quarter of section 23, all in township 88, range 36 west of the fifth principal meridian, in Sac county, Iowa, and that we name the seat of justice Sac City.

"(Dated) September 19th, 1857.

"TALMAGE E. BROWN,
"C. W. WILLIAMS,
"Cetus P. HUXFORD.

"Before County Judge
"A. J. CAIN."


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