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Grinnell Introduction

“Go west, young man, go west.” These instructions were given to J.B. Grinnell and his compatriots in the early 1800s.

Mr. Grinnell acquired land and founded the city of Grinnell in 1854. The location he chose in the heart of the Midwest has lent itself to years of history, architecture and growth.

One of the first colleges west of the Mississippi, the Underground Railroad, a record-setting aviator, and the microchip inventor all have roots in Grinnell, a city rated among the best in Norman Crampton’s book “The 100 Best Small Towns in America.”


A strong community spirit benefits over 9,000 residents and provides shopping, dining, a nationally renowned liberal arts college, and thriving cultural and recreational outlets for residents and visitors alike.

Grinnell Regional Medical Center is nationally recognized for its bariatric surgery and care, as well as serving the healthcare needs of our community and central Iowa.

Students are served by the Grinnell-Newburg Community School District. Numerous area preschools, parochial and alternative schools are also available. Grinnell is home to Grinnell College and Iowa Valley Community College.


Grinnell treasures its rich past through a variety of vintage buildings and homes listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Its location in the center of Iowa and the Midwest, along the nation’s busiest interstate, I-80, puts it within easy reach of travelers.

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