Novel Coronavirus 19 (COVID-19) Information: CLICK HERE


In an attempt to maintain continuity of operations and limit potential exposure due to the Corona Virus/COVID-19. The Emmet County Courthouse & All County Facilities will begin limiting access of the public.

While the Courthouse & All County Facilities WILL remain OPEN, people are encouraged to contact the respective County Office by telephone to conduct business until further notice.

Business matters that require immediate attention will be attended to as is necessary.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Emmet County Board of Supervisors

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Emmet County, Iowa

Emmet County was organized on February 7, 1859. It is situated in the northern tier of Iowa counties and is bounded on the north by the state of Minnesota; on the east by Kossuth County; on the south by Palo Alto County; and on the west by Dickinson County. It includes congressional townships 98, 99, and 100 North of Ranges 31, 32, 33 and 34 West. The townships along the northern border are fractional, so that the extent from north to south is only seventeen miles. From east to west it is twenty-four miles and the total area of this county is 408 square miles. The west fork of the Des Moines River flows through the county along the west side. The east fork has its source in Tuttle (Okamanpadu) Lake in the northeast part of the county and flows southerly along the east side of the county. The county has several lakes that afford good fishing. There are a total of six incorporated towns in Emmet County they include: Armstrong, Dolliver, Estherville, Gruver, Ringsted and Wallingford.

Estherville is the county seat. The first courthouse for Emmet County was in the town's first school building located where the post office now stands. An election in 1879 moved the county seat from Estherville to Swan Lake. A couple years later, it was moved back. The first courthouse was built in 1883 and was located between the present library and courthouse. That first courthouse was torn down in 1958 when the present courthouse was constructed.

The Estherville Meteorite is world famous. The largest meteor fall on record landed two miles north of Estherville in May of 1879. It created interest world wide and parts of it are in international museums with a large piece being located in the Estherville Library.

Emmet County Courthouse Hours

  • Courthouse Hours

    8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    Monday through Friday
    (closed on legal holidays)

  • Holidays Closed

    New Year's Day
    Martin Luther King Day
    President's Day
    Memorial Day
    Independence Day
    Labor Day
    Veteran's Day
    Day after Thanksgiving
    Christmas Eve
    Christmas Day

  • Drivers License Office

    8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday