No Iowa county has influenced American history more than Dallas County. It propelled Harry Truman to an unlikely victory in the 1948 presidential campaign, following a fiery speech he delivered to 100,000 farmers on a sweltering September day at the National Plowing Match near Dexter. Just 15 years earlier, a shoot-out near Dexfield Park marked the beginning of the end for infamous outlaws Bonnie and Clyde and the notorious Barrow Gang. Dallas County, located just west of Des Moines, has produced several major-league baseball players (among them Bob Feller and Hal Manders), a US congressman (David Young), and Nile Kinnick, the 1939 Heisman Trophy winner and University of Iowa football legend whose grandfather George Clarke, of Adel, served as Iowa's governor from 1913 to 1917. Today, Dallas County is one of the fastest-growing counties in America and remains a region of opportunity with a rich heritage of small-town living, farming, coal mining, and the immigrant experience.
Iowa native Darcy Dougherty Maulsby lived in Dallas County, near Granger and Woodward, in the early 2000s. Through her writing and marketing firm, Darcy Maulsby & Co., she shares the stories and history of Iowa. Dougherty Maulsby is also the author of Calhoun County and A Culinary History of Iowa.