Area Information


The county seat of Clarke County, Osceola, Iowa is a city of approximately 5,000 located just 30 minutes south of Des Moines. Our area is known for providing some of Iowa’s best deer hunting, fertile farmland, strong industry and endless outdoor recreation.

The Greater Des Moines Area and all of central and southern Iowa is a wonderful environment for raising a family and building a career. The area’s leading industries include healthcare, insurance and agribusiness, resulting in one of the nation’s lowest rates of unemployment. Southern Iowa is also a pristine sanctuary for hunting, fishing and nature. ranks West Des Moines #53 on their list of the nation’s Top 100 Places to Live.


Residents of central and southern Iowa love outdoor pursuits, none more so than world-class whitetail deer and turkey hunting in Clarke, Decatur, Lucas, Warren and Wayne Counties. Adjacent to Clarke County, Madison County is home to one of Iowa’s most pristine wilderness preserves, Clanton Creek Natural Resource Area. Located partly within Clarke County, Stephens State Forest is another popular destination for outdoor leisure. Numerous trails wind through the forest, affording opportunities for hiking, backpacking, cross-country skiing and horseback riding.

Located 75 miles south of Des Moines, Sun Valley Lake is a regional destination. This 500-acre spring-fed lake is perfect for anglers with great fishing for walleye, bass and pan fish, boating for water skiers and a round of golf or two once you reach dry land.


The Greater Des Moines Area features a wealth of hiking and biking trails to allow residents to explore everything from bustling downtown areas to quiet natural sanctuaries and the historic town squares of its many rural communities. There are currently over 550 miles of trails to enjoy, with 52 of them in Des Moines proper and many more planned.

Madison County, Iowa is of course home to numerous covered bridges made famous by the novel, movie and Broadway play “The Bridges of Madison County”. Of the original 19 covered bridges, six remain today and five are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Enjoy the picturesque Iowa countryside while visiting Roseman Bridge, Holliwell Bridge, Cedar Bridge, Cutler-Donahoe Bridge, Hogback Bridge and Imes Bridge to take in some Iowa history.


In Iowa, Clarke Community School District operates a pre-school, elementary, middle and high schools in the area. Simpson College and Graceland University are two private institutions of higher learning near Osceola. Drake University is another private institution in Des Moines. Many students also choose to attend Iowa State University, a public, four-year college in Aimes. Clarke County Hospital is an award-winning medical facility providing health care to the region. Local travelers are accommodated by AMTRAK and Osceola Municipal Airport. Our town also affords convenient access to Des Moines International Airport.

The Greater Des Moines Area is home to many top national and international companies. Some of our area’s top employers include Wells Fargo, Hy-Vee, Principal Financial, DuPont Pioneer, Bridgestone Tires and Mercy Medical Center. Locally in Osceola companies such as Osceola Foods, Lakeview Casino and Swine Graphics employ many residents.


Residents of the Midwest and Great Plains enjoy a front-row seat to just about everything Mother Nature has to offer. Springtime brings about thunderstorms and beneficial rainfall, which soon lead to warm summer days with high temperatures near 90 degrees. Once October rolls around the leaves begin to turn and nighttime temps can drop into the forties. Most winter days top out at 20 to 40 degrees, with anywhere from 15 to 30+ inches of snowfall being normal for the season.


Osceola gets its name from the eponymous Seminole Indian leader who himself was named for a type of ceremonial black tea. Clarke County was established in 1846 and is named for Governor James Clarke. The first settlers to call Osceola home were Mormons en route from Nauvoo, Illinois to Salt Lake City, Utah in the mid-1800s. Nearby Winterset, Iowa is the birthplace of legendary film star John Wayne, and astronaut Peggy Whitson was born in Beaconsfield, Iowa.

The City of Des Moines traces its origins to May 1843, when Captain James Allen supervised the construction of a fort on the site where the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers merge. Allen wanted to use the name Fort Raccoon; however, the U.S. War Department told him to name it Fort Des Moines. The fort was built to control the Sauk and Meskwaki Indians, who had been transplanted to the area from their traditional lands in eastern Iowa. In 1846, Fort Des Moines became the seat of Polk County.

If you’re interested in buying or selling hunting land, a home, farm, lake house or commercial property in Osceola, the Des Moines area or throughout Iowa, Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska, give United Country Land Home and Auction Co. a call today. We specialize in buying, selling and auctioning land and homes throughout the Heartland.

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Each office independently owned and operated. The Information provided herein is deemed accurate, but subject to errors, omissions, price changes, prior sale or withdrawal. United Country does not guarantee or is anyway responsible for the accuracy or completeness of information, and provides said information without warranties of any kind. Please verify all facts.