Named for the nearby English River, North English was originally known as Soaptown and later Nevada; confusion with another town of the same name led to its current moniker being bestowed around 1884. Around that time the Marion-Ottumwa division of the Milwaukee railroad arrived, leading the “Old Town” to be moved roughly ½ mile to its current location to be in closer proximity.
The new town was platted June 6th, 1884 and incorporated in 1892 with E.D. Baird, then president and cashier of the North English Savings Bank, its first mayor.
The North English area experiences four distinct seasons. July highs average 84 degrees and January lows are usually well below freezing. The area receives approximately 33 inches of rain and 28 inches of snow on average annually.
Primary and secondary education in our area is provided by the English Valley School District. Nearby Iowa City is home to the University of Iowa, providing world-class collegiate education opportunities.
North English is located conveniently close to both Marengo Memorial Hospital and the Keokuk County Health Center in Sigourney. Additional medical services are just a short trip away in Iowa City.
One of the biggest attractions in our area is the Amana Colonies. The Amana Colonies are a group of settlements of German Pietists in Iowa, comprising of seven villages. They first settled near Buffalo in New York, but to better live out their beliefs they moved to Iowa. For 80 years they maintained an almost completely self-sufficient local economy, importing very little from the wider, industrializing U.S. economy. They were able to achieve this independence and life-style by keeping to the specialized handcrafts and farming occupations that they brought with them from Germany. Today the Colonies are known mainly for their restaurants and craft shops. Some of the shops they have are woodworking shops, wine shops, and Millstream a brewery. The Colonies have been listed as a National Historic Landmark since 1965.
Fun for the whole family can be found right in town at Knoll Ridge Country Club with swimming and golf available. For the outdoor enthusiast, our area is home the English River Wildlife Area, Coffman Wood Preserve, Berstier Woods and the Lake Iowa County Recreation Area. Those interested in local flavor should visit the world-famous “Liars Club” that meets that the EV Malt Shop most afternoons for some tall tales and good cheer.
For those of you who love shopping we have to great malls not far from us. In Williamsburg is the Tanger Outlet Mall about 15 minutes from our office. There is over 55 stores some with factory prices and some at the full retail price. The mall is an outdoor mall and great for walking in the spring, summer, and fall months. There is also a larger mall in Coralville just off of Interstate 80 about 35 minutes from our office. There is a large variety of shopping and eating services in the mall along with a skating rink and a movie theatre. Attached to the mall there is also a Target and Best Buy.
The Iowa Speedway is another great attraction in our area. Iowa Speedway is a state-of-the-art 7/8 mile asphalt paved tri-oval race track and motorsports facility located just 30 miles east of Des Moines at I-80 Exit 168 in Newton, Iowa. The track is owned and operated by U.S. Motorsport Corporation and designed by former NASCAR Champion Rusty Wallace, now an anchor and analyst for ABC-TV/ESPN. Call 1-866-RUSTY-GO, or visit www.iowaspeedway.com to learn more.
Another great attraction to our area is Fireside Winery located 5 miles north of the Tanger Mall. Fun times await you at Fireside Winery with delicious wine, knowledgeable and friendly staff, and splendid views. They are also close to the Amana Colonies and I-80. You can visit their website at www.firesidewinery.com
We believe our community is a great place to live, work and raise a family with Midwestern values and a strong work ethic. If you’d like to make your home in friendly North English, give your United Country office a call today!