Monroe County is a county located in the south central part of Iowa. The town seat of Monroe county is Albia Iowa. Lake Miami is the most visited place in Monroe county. Lake Miami offers picnic areas, fishing, hunting, hiking, and outdoor recreations, as well as cabin rentals. Four major towns in Monroe County are Albia, Lovilla, Melrose, and Hitemen .In the early 20th century, it was a center of bituminous coal mining and in 1910 had a population of more than 25,000. As mining declined, people moved elsewhere for work. The county was named for James Monroe, fifth President of the United States.