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Melcher-Dallas CSD

Elementary

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About

History of Melcher-Dallas Community
 

Melcher’s early history is closely related with the Chicago rock Island and Pacific railroad company, and the coal mining industry which flourished for about 25 years. In 1910 the Indiana Consolidated Coal Company purchased land about two miles south of Melcher and sank their Number 1 mine. This mine was sometimes known as the “Million Dollar Mystery” or the “Electria” because it was the first all electric mine in this part of the state. It was well equipped, and by 1913 was producing around 2000 tons of coal per day. A railroad was necessary for shipping the coal from the mine. The Rock Island Company brought a branch to the area and the short line from Des Moines to Allerton was under way. A coal mining camp was started near the mine, but most of the workers later moved to the new town of Melcher. In 1912 the site for the new town was purchased by T. J. Newkirk, vice president of the Rock Island and Pacific Railroad Company. He later deeded it to his son and his wife Emma. They named the new town Melcher in memory of the man who had engineered the railroad. Mr. Melcher was second vice president of the railroad and was killed in an accident a short time before. The town was incorporated and the post office was established in 1913 with W.T. Newkirk as the first postmaster. Until this time the people had received their mail in Dallas. In 1914 the depot was completed and a celebration was held in the city park. A tree was planted on the depot lot in honor of Mr. Melcher. Farmers came from miles around and hitched their horses to the hitching posts around the square. In this same year the Melcher Union office was built. Melcher continued to grow until about 1927 and 1928. By this time it had reached its peak in industry and population. There were 700 members in the “Miners Union”, and the total population was around 2000. The building of the school gym started in 1927 during a strike of the miners. Many of the men donated their labor to this cause. It was said that the Melcher gym was the best constructed gymnasium in Marion County. [Written by Mabel E. Gill in 1955]
 

 

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Contact Information
 
Melcher-Dallas Elementary
1003 Park Street
Dallas, IA 50062
Voice:  (641) 947-3151
Fax:  (641) 947-4032


 
Melcher-Dallas JH/HS
210 S. Main St.
PO Box 489
Melcher-Dallas, IA 50163
Voice:  (641) 947-3731
Fax:  (641) 947-2321


 
Melcher-Dallas CSD
210 S. Main St.
PO Box 489
Melcher-Dallas, IA 50163
Voice:  (641) 947-3731
Fax:  (641) 947-2321