Dexter, Iowa

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Dexter is a city in Dallas County, Iowa, United States. The population was 689 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Des MoinesWest Des Moines Metropolitan Statistical Area. Dexter was named after the famous trotting horse Dexter.



Dexter was founded in 1868.

The city is famous for being the site of a July 23, 1933, shootout between members of the Barrow gang and police from as far away as Des Moines.[1][2] On September 18, 1948, Dexter was the site of a national plowing match at which President Harry Truman delivered a speech attacking the 80th Congress for its record in regard to the American farmer. This speech is considered one of the most important of his 1948 Whistle Stop campaign that turned the tide of the election and returned him to the White House.[2][3][4][5][6]


Dexter is located at 41°30′56″N 94°13′38″W / 41.51556°N 94.22722°W / 41.51556; -94.22722 (41.515617, -94.227115)[7].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.2 square miles (3.1 km²), all of it land.

The community is immediately north of Interstate 80.


As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 689 people, 259 households, and 190 families residing in the city. The population density was 578.2 people per square mile (223.5/km²). There were 270 housing units at an average density of 226.6/sq mi (87.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.82% White, 0.29% Native American, 1.31% Asian, 0.29% from other races, and 0.29% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.16% of the population.

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