Westphalia, IA

Established in 1872 •  population 160

“Where the World Is At Its Best”


    In Shelby County, Iowa, located on County Road F32, 3 miles west of Highway 59 in the heart of southwest Iowa’s picturesque countryside.Utility & Telecommunication providers

    Water: Shelby County Rural Water.

    Gas: Propane with multiple service providers

    Electricity: MidAmerican Energy Company.

    Phone Service: Farmers Mutual Cooperative Telephone Co. serves a 580 square mile  area in West Central Iowa including Westphalia. Paging, voice mail, calling cards, cellular service along with 100% digitally switched calling is provided. FMTC also offers free custom calling features such as call forwarding, call waiting, speed dialing, three‑way calling and equal access for all long distance calling.

    Internet Service: Farmers Mutual provides 56kbs & DSL from 128 kps to 8 mbs.

    Cable Service: Farmers Mutual provides 38 channels.

    Cellular Service: Cellular One, Verizon & FMCTC wireless.

Municipal Services

    Council/Mayor government

    Comprehensive city plan: yes

    City zoning ordinance in effect: yes

    County zoning ordinance in effect: yes

    Subdivision ordinance with design standards in effect: yes

    Number of volunteer fire department personnel: 25

    Fire insurance class in city: 8

    Fire insurance class outside city: 9

    Police protection: Shelby County Sheriff’s Department

    Industrial waste pickup service: yes

    Percentage of city streets hard surfaced 100%


    Youth attend either the  Harlan Community Schools  (K-12)  or the Shelby County Catholic School (preK - 8) in Harlan. Shelby County schools are among the State’s leaders in combining a top-quality academic education, with a wide variety of successful extracurricular activities.  For more information see the Quality of Life tab in your resource guide.

Business & Industry

    Jay’s Woodworking & Cabinet Shop - Tom’s Repair - Jerry Gross Painting - Frank’s Karpet Kleaning -  Connie’s Beauty Shop - Westphalia Clubhouse - Tom's Electric - Farm Service Coop - Camie's Corner.


    St. Boniface Catholic Church was built in 1881‑82.

Bragging Rights

    In 1991 the City was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The historical district includes the Church, Rectory, Cemetery, School, Our Lady of Grace Shrine, St. Isadore (patron saint of farmers) Shrine, Ball Diamond, Clubhouse, and First Fruits (corn crib). The City also has one of Iowa's longest running amateur baseball teams.


    The German Heritage Park - on the east edge of Westphalia  features a shelterhouse, playground and many native prairie grasses and trees.

    St. Boniface Church - the workmen baked bricks for their church and forged the church's first of two 2.5 ton bells which adorn the church. In 1991 the Church and the surrounding church property was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. In the mid-1990's the church steeple, which had been tilting for many years, was repaired.

    St. Boniface Parish Picnic - since 1882, a Fourth of July celebration to honor the church and community.

    Emil Flusche home - built in 1872, it was the home of the first Catholic mass, wedding and baptism in Shelby County and later relocated behind St. Boniface Catholic Church.

    Shelby County Trap & Skeet - open May through November every Thursday night.


    Westphalia Township was set aside by the Chicago‑Rock Island & Pacific Railway to be settled by German Catholics in the 1870’s. In 1872, founder Emil Flusche had a vision of living in a peaceful village in the center of a farming community where Germans who loved to work the land could come and be self‑sufficient and help one another. They would have their own church for their spiritual needs and cultivate the faith for generations to follow. Westphalia remains a parish community and was named for Westphalia, MI, because the people had been so kind to Flusche when he lived there. Flusche later moved west again and founded Westphalia, KS.



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