Bancroft, Iowa

Bancroft was established in 1881. A.A. Call named it Bancroft, after George Bancroft who was an historian and diplomat. It was originally organized as a railway reservation. Today it is the second largest community in Kossuth County.

The business community includes over 70 establishments, which serve a population of over 1,000 people. It has a number of great recreational attractions including: Memorial Park with its history of great baseball, a municipal swimming pool with a new bath house, a city park with playground equipment and camping facilities, lighted tennis courts, and a lighted softball diamond. Its visitor’s guide quotes, “Bancroft prides itself on having strong retail and service businesses including manufacturing and strong agricultural businesses. Bancroft also is proud of its strong educational programs, a safe environment, and varied recreational activities for all ages.

Bancroft truly has a small town atmosphere with large town facilities.”


The ‘Northern Hub’ of Kossuth County, double in geographic size to all other counties in Iowa. Bancroft is one of 12 cities in Iowa that has been recognized as a Smart Shrinking City. We are included in this select group of cities as our quality of life is highly rated. We are home to many businesses for a rural community of under 1,000. We have a number of Ag related businesses, along with light industrial and manufacturing, including a chick hatchery and trailer manufacturer. Our Main Street boasts of a car dealership, bank, insurance providers, health clinic, chiropractor, grocery store, spa, hair services, Pub and Grill, newspaper, health club, florist, electronics and furniture, CPA office, and Sister’s Inn a renovated Catholic Convent complete with meeting rooms. Award winning S&B Farms Distillery is a destination spot and is well known throughout Iowa. Bancroft is a town that has been synonymous with baseball for its state titles and major league players, and features Memorial Baseball Park, a wood stadium built in 1948. The City enjoys an aquatic center, golf course, volleyball courts, outdoor lighted basketball court and the bowling alley is under renovation for your recreation. St. John the Baptist Catholic Church features beautiful stained glass windows, reminiscent of European churches. First Baptist Church is a pristine little church that is over 125 years old. Please contact the City with any questions (515) 885-2382 or Be sure to check out our website, for all the exciting events happening, for all city related services and of course our Facebook page. Come to Bancroft—Spend a day, a night, a lifetime.

Works Cited

Much of the historical information was taken from Kossuth County history booklet. The information was compiled by Richard Schiek as part of the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the establishment of Kossuth County and the “Kossuth on State” project, dedicated on July 13, 2001. There is a complete bibliography in the back of the Kossuth County History booklet.

Discover Bancroft  Brochure sponsored by Prairie Meadows and Bancroft Municipal Utility. Brochure done by the City of Bancroft. Published in 1999.

Welcome to Kossuth County Iowa Visitor’s guide funded by Kossuth County Economic Development Corporation, Western Iowa Tourism, and Algona Publishing.
Published in 2001.

Some of the information used was taken from the Algona Upper Des Moines in its articles on the Communities of the Month.  Permission was granted to use this information by the newspaper.  The following are the articles from which the information was found.

Buchta, Shari. February: Bancroft’s month to shine.
Algona Upper Des Moines, 1 Feb. 2001.