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.