Traer is a city in Tama County, Iowa, United States. The population was 1,594 at the 2000 census. James "Tama Jim" Wilson lived in Traer after serving as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and was buried in a cemetery northwest of the town in 1920. Traer is known for the iron winding staircase that originally led to the office of the local newspaper. The staircase is freestanding, reverse-spiral and connected to the building with a suspended walkway, a somewhat rare arrangement.
Services provided by the city include a fire department, an ambulance service, North Tama County Community Schools, a swimming pool, a public library, an airport, and two parks.
The city is governed by a mayor-council government, with a five-member council. It employs an attorney, a treasurer, a clerk and deputy clerk, and a gas and building inspector. The city runs multiple committees, on finance, streets, airport and garbage, recreation, public services, and protection. City boards include those responsible for the library, the airport, the parks, the memorial building, planning and zoning, the Wilson Nature Preserve, and historic preservation.