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And footprints left behind..... 

 

 


 

Big Creek Schoolhouse
Polk City, IA.

 

The Big Creek Schoolhouse, also known as Polk City Schoolhouse and Polk City City Hall, is a historic building located in Polk City, Iowa, United States. It was built in 1863 when the community was known as Big Creek. It is the work of master builder John Adam Schall, who was able to adapt heavy timber framing for the construction of the two-story Greek Revival structure. It served as a schoolhouse and community center from the time it was built until 1893. It became Polk City's city hall the following year, and contniued to serve as a community center. A full-size addition was completed on the back of the building in 1915. Two one-story additions were constructed later in the 20th century. A frame addition was built in 1964 on the southwest corner of the main block, and a frame lean-to was added onto the north elevation in 1984. In 1966 the outside staircase, which was the only way to access the second floor, was removed.

Unused portions of the first floor and the whole second floor of the building was leased to the Big Creek Historical Society, which converted the space into a museum. Restoration took place from 2005 to 2009. The rest of the building continues to serve as city hall. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2004.

 


 

Court Avenue Bridge
Des Moines, IA.
 

The Court Avenue Bridge is an historic structure located in downtown Des Moines, Iowa, United States. It became a contributing property in the Civic Center Historic District in 1988, and was individually listed on the National Register of Historic Places on May 15, 1998 as a part of the Highway Bridges of Iowa MPS.

The first bridge across the Des Moines River at Court Avenue was a toll bridge that was built from 1857 to 1858 under the direction of architect U.B. White. It was the first permanent bridge over the river in the city of Des Moines. Legislators using the bridge in order to get to the capitol building were given passes. The bridge was composed of four spans with double trusses and double arches. It was replaced in 1870 by a post truss bridge and lasted until at least 1898. The current bridge is believed to be its replacement when it built from 1917 to 1918.

The present Court Avenue Bridge is the third of the six current bridges in the Civic Center district to be constructed. The Walnut Street Bridge was built in 1911 and the Locust Street Bridge was built in 1907. Both of the earlier bridges were reconstructed in the 1960s and their original ornamentation was removed at the time. The Court Avenue Bridge was designed by architect James B. Marsh.

During a renovation of the bridge in 1982, the bridge deck was replaced and the supporting spans were preserved and rehabilitated. Repairs were made using existing materials and replacement materials were used only when necessary and were matched with the originals as closely as possible. Street lamps with round globes and metal work that reflected the 1910s were added to the bridge in 1986 as a part of a $1.8 million project to refurbish Court Avenue between the bridge and the Polk County Courthouse.

 


 

Fort Des Moines Provisional Army Officer Training School
Des Moines, IA.
 

The Fort Des Moines Provisional Army Officer Training School was a military base and training facility on the south side of Des Moines, Iowa. Established in 1901, the base is notable as the place where African Americans were trained to be officers for the U.S. Army during World War I, and where women first began training for US Army service in 1942 as part of the Women's Army Corps. Surviving older portions of the base were declared a National Historic Landmark in 1974 in recognition of this history. The fort property was turned over to the city in the 1950s, and has since been put a number of public and private uses.

There have been three forts called Fort Des Moines. This one, the third, was established in 1901 on 640 acres, several miles south of downtown Des Moines, and at the time outside the city boundary. Initially founded as a base for cavalry, the fort was built out beginning in 1903 with barracks, stables, officers' quarters, and other facilities for this use. In 1917 the first officer candidate class of African Americans in US military history, trained at Fort Des Moines, and received commissions. Also in 1917 a training camp for black medical personnel began, and in 1918 the fort was used for the treatment of World War I casualties.

In the 1920s and early 1930s the fort again housed military units, some cavalry, and some artillery. In 1933–34 it was used as a Civilian Conservation Corps camp. With the entry of the United States into World War II, the fort was used as a training center for women, for service in the Army's Women's Army Corps. After the war, the fort housed veteran soldiers for a time, and was turned over to the city in the early 1950s. In 1949, a portion of the old post grounds became a U.S. Army Reserve training center, which it continues to the present.

 


 

Historic Valley Junction
West Des Moines, IA.
 

Historic railroad district, founded in the 1890s, with more than 160 specialty stores, art galleries, fashion boutiques, restaurants and antique shops. Historic Valley Junction is the gathering place that is the heart and soul of West Des Moines — a delightful mix of old and new, bridging generations with unique shops, vibrant events and a walkable hometown feel.

 


 

Hoosier Row School
Indianola, IA.
 

Hoosier Row School is a historic building located southwest of Indianola, Iowa, United States. The property for the one-room schoolhouse was acquired by Sub District No. 4, White Oak Township from Alva P. Keeny and Mary J. Keeny on March 10, 1870. They paid $100 for 1-acre. The present building was constructed in 1900, and now serves as a community center. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2011.

 


 

Iowa State Capitol
Des Moines, IA.
 

The Iowa State Capitol, seat of the Iowa General Assembly, is located in Iowa's capital city, Des Moines, and houses the Iowa Senate, Iowa House of Representatives, the Office of the Governor, and the Offices of the Attorney General, Auditor, Treasurer, and Secretary of State. The building also includes a chamber for the Iowa Supreme Court, although court activities usually take place in the neighboring Iowa Supreme Court building. The building was constructed between 1871 and 1886, and is the only five-domed capitol in the country.

Located at East 9th Street and Grand Avenue, the Capitol is set atop a hill and offers a panoramic view of the city's downtown and the West Capitol Terrace. Various monuments and memorials are to its sides and front, including the Soldiers and Sailors' Monument and the Lincoln and Tad statue.

 


 

Iowa State Fairgrounds
Des Moines, IA.
 

The Iowa State Fairgrounds is located on the east side of Des Moines, Iowa. It annually hosts the Iowa State Fair in late summer. The state fair was begun in Iowa in 1854 and the current fairgrounds were established in 1886. The fairgrounds were listed as an historic district on the National Register of Historic Places in 1987 as the Iowa State Fair and Exposition Grounds.

The Iowa State Fair was held in a different community every two years after it was first established. The first fair was held in Fairfield in 1854. The other towns that hosted the fair included Muscatine, Oskaloosa, Iowa City, Dubuque, Burlington, Clinton, Keokuk and Cedar Rapids. The state fair moved to Des Moines permanently in 1878. The fairgrounds were initially located on the west side of the city between 38th Street on the east, 42nd Street on the west, Center Street on the north and Grand Avenue on the south. In 1886 the fairgrounds were moved to the east side of town on University Avenue. The property had previously been the Calvin Thornton Farmstead. The original house and barn are still on the fairground’s property.

 


 

Jordan House
West Des Moines, IA.
 

The Jordan House is an historic building located in West Des Moines, Iowa, United States. It was built by abolitionist James C. Jordan and was a station on the Underground Railroad in Iowa. It has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1973.

James Jordan’s first dwelling in Polk County was a lean-to tent that he replaced with a log cabin in 1848. Two years later construction started on the present house. They moved into the basement when it was completed. It was divided into a kitchen and a bed/sitting room. In 1851 the first phase of the upper floors was completed. The white frame house is two stories tall. The first phase of the house featured an elegant entrance, two large rooms on the first floor and a walnut staircase that led to two large bedrooms on the second floor. The kitchen remained in the basement.

Before the American Civil War the house was a station on the Underground Railroad. Jordan, who was a staunch abolitionist, was considered the chief conductor in Polk County. John Brown stayed in the house at least two times, and one of those times he was leading 12 slaves to freedom. The house was also a place where travelers stopped on their journeys to the American West. It was also a gathering place for local businessmen and politicians.

The house was expanded in 1870. The addition provided space for another parlor, a dining room, library, and kitchen. Porches were added to the east and south sides of the house. A second entrance was also added with another black walnut staircase to the six additional bedrooms on the second floor.

In 1893 Jordan’s daughter Eda was sliding down the banister when she fell off and broke her neck. She died two days later and the family said her ghost continued to inhabit the house.

 


 

Larnerd Case House
Des Moines, IA.
 

The Larnerd Case House, also known as Rose Hill, is a historic building located in Des Moines, Iowa, United States. This two-story, frame, Greek Revival structure is the oldest dwelling that is still standing in the city. The second floor dormer and the front porch are not original to the house. This section of Iowa was opened for settlement in 1845 after a treaty with the Sauk and Meskwaki (Fox) tribes. Larnerd Case, an Ohio native, built this house using black walnut cut from the property in 1846. He lived on what was then a 160-acre farm until his death in 1857. The residential area that surrounds the house and the park across the street were once part of the farm. The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.

 


 

Southeast Water Trough
Des Moines, IA.
 

The Southeast Water Trough is an historic structure located in Des Moines, Iowa, United States. It is the last of 15 National Humane Alliance fountains that were placed around the city by the Iowa Humane Alliance. They were also named Ensign fountains after the founder of the National Humane Alliance, Herman Lee Ensign. This was one of two placed in Des Moines in 1906. The 6-foot tall granite structure features a rectangular shaft that is surrounded by a 6-foot bowl. Four small cups are located at the base to provide water for smaller animals. The fountain rests on a base of tiles. It is a reminder of the horse and buggy era before the prevalence of indoor plumbing. While it served a practical function of watering horses, it also served a social function as a place where people in the local community could gather. The structure was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.

 


 

Southwest Fifth St. Bridge
Des Moines, IA. 


 The Southwest Fifth St. Bridge is an historic structure located in downtown Des Moines, Iowa, United States. Built in 1898 after a controversy surrounding the bidding process, it is one of the last Pratt through truss bridges left in an urban setting in Iowa. The bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1998 as a part of the Highway Bridges of Iowa MPS.

The bridge was built amidst controversy in the late 19th century. The first controversy that the bridge faced was its placement. The bridge was first suggested in 1896. The aldermen on the west side of town wanted a bridge over the Raccoon River at Fifth Street. The aldermen on the east side thought that a bridge was needed over the Des Moines River at East Sixth Street to better serve that part of town. After some delay, the Fifth Street bridge was provided for with a Sixth Street bridge to be built the following year.

 


 

Terrace Hill
Des Moines, IA. 


 This opulent 1869 Victorian mansion was built by Iowa’s first millionaire, Benjamin F. Allen, and currently serves as Iowa’s governor’s residence. Terrace Hill overlooks downtown Des Moines and is situated on eight acres with a Victorian formal garden.

 

 

 


 

Valley Junction-West Des Moines City Hall and Engine House
West Des Moines, IA.
 

The Valley Junction-West Des Moines City Hall and Engine House is a historic building located in West Des Moines, Iowa, United States. Valley Junction was incorporated in 1893, and it was named for the junction of three lines of the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad where it was located. This two-story brick building was constructed to house the community's city hall and fire station, even though the fire department would not be established until 1905. The fire station was located on the first floor, and the city hall was located on the second floor. It was located a block north of the train depot. An interurban railway connected the town to Des Moines, and its proximity to the Iowa coal fields contributed to its growth. By 1911 the town grew to be the second largest community in Polk County, and its name was changed to West Des Moines by 1940. The building was used for city hall until 1952. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.



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