Exira is known to be the oldest town in Audubon County and it was named after Miss Exira Eckman. Her father, Judge John Eckman, originally from Ohio, happened to be visiting relatives when the town was laid out and platted. A proprietor named Mr. David Edgerton intended to name the town "Viola" after his daughter; however, Judge Eckman made a promise to buy a lot if the town would be named Exira. (This was wise decision since there was already a town in Iowa called Viola!)
On June 15, 1857, Exira was born, and lots were auctioned off to the highest bidder. One in particular was Judge Harris and he reserved the block east of the city park, and later that year, he built, not only his first home, but the first home in Exira.
Today, the house still stands proudly.