One of the main attractions in the Northern part of Iowa is the village of Froelich. The small village is located between McGregor and Monona and it is known as “Tractor Town USA”. In 1892, John Froelich, an Iowa native, created his everlasting legacy – a tractor with forward and reverse gears. These tractors were the first to be operated in both directions using a gasoline-powered engine. And they weren’t called as tractors back in 1892.
The Froelich Foundation Museum in McGregor preserves the history of the first tractor and hosts a replica of the original engineering marvel. The blueprint of the tractor is also available at the General Store. In 1939, a monument was erected to honor the efforts of John Froelich and his legacy.
The Froelich village also has a blacksmith shop, an iron clad store, and an old school room, which was built in 1866. Blacksmith shops were one of the pillars of 19th century villages. The old blacksmith shop was located near the northwest corner of the general store. The current shop was built in the early 1900s and contains tools used by Froelich to build many of his machines. John Froelich built the first tractor that had a single cylinder engine, with the help of his blacksmith.
Tickets: The museum charges $5 for general population and $1 for kids aged 6 to 12. Children, 5 years and younger, can visit the museum at no cost.
Museum Hours: The museum is open from May to September, and also during few days in October. The museum is open for six days a week (except on Wednesdays) from 10 am to 5 pm.
24397 Froelich Road,
McGregor, IA – 52157.
Come and enjoy the tour of the many buildings at Froelich Village, and learn more about the Tractor Town of USA.
* Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons.