The 1st Water Plant
In 1887, the 1st water plant started in LeMars. This venture was started by an organization of whom John M. Dunn was president and Peter Egan served as secretary. The plant was started at the location presently know as the North Pumping Station and Reservoir, which is now O’Toole Park. This ground was formerly part of a brick plant. It was believed that the 1st water works office was located at 38 Central Avenue Northeast.

Original Wells
They started with a few shallow wells, but as demand grew they kept putting down more wells until they had over 50 -2 inch wells about 50 feet deep. The original wells were connected to a 10 inch water main through a tunnel to a reservoir that was built in 1890.

Early Monetary Facts
The original capitalization was for $40,000 started by Mr. Dunn, who very suddenly left town after receiving a check for $20,000. The plant was taken over by John Winchell, who invested $20,000 in equipment in addition to a loan of $32,000. At this time, in the year of 1891, a local bank had invested $40,000 and made an additional loan of $4,500, and, in order to protect their interests, took over the water works.

Recent History
In 1983, the water works was sold to a private owner from Woodstock, Illinois named Matt Stahl. He ran the water works under the name of LeMars Water Company for around 5 years. After many complaints from the citizens of LeMars, the city began condemnation proceedings against the private company and received ownership of the water works in June of 1988.