Washta is a city in Cherokee County, Iowa, United States. The population was 248 at the 2010 census. It holds the distinction of being "The Coldest Spot in Iowa," having recorded a temperature of 47 degrees below zero without wind chill on January 12, 1912.
Washta's name dates back to 1868 when a local man named Whisman turned his farm into a trading post/mail stop for the freight train going from Correctionville, Iowa to Cherokee, Iowa. He was asked to be the official postmaster for the area. When asked what the name of his town would be, he recalled an interesting encounter with two Native Americans the year before. While Whisman was out hunting, the two came upon him, removed his gun, looked at it, and handed it back while saying, "Wash-tay, Wash-tay," meaning good. Changing the pronunciation slightly, Whisman decided he would call the town Washta....LESS