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Rockdale, Iowa was a small unincorporated village formerly located just south of Dubuque, Iowa between Dubuque and Key West, Iowa. The village was situated on the Catfish Creek in Dubuque County, Iowa, and was the site of one of the first mills in the state of Iowa.
In 1834 or 1835 David Hutton and his son built a mill built of logs. Initially the mill was known as "The Catfish Mills." In 1839 the mill was sold. James Pratt and Walter Manson purchased the mill in 1840, and they renamed the mill "Rockford Mill." They replaced the original log building with a frame building four stories high. This mill could produce 90,000 bushels of wheat annually, and the flour produced was equal in quality to the flour produced in St. Louis, Missouri. As a result, the mill enjoyed a monopoly in the upper midwest until the establishment of other mills. Pratt and Munson would operate this mill for the next 25 years. During this time Rockdale was a crossroads for farmers in the area.