The Moines Public Library provides databases, metropolis directories and extra

The Des Moines Public Library provides analysis instruments, databases and extra for native historical past buffs or anybody serious about delving into the previous.

Not solely do we’ve a whole bunch of books and directories in our bodily assortment, our on-line native historical past sources proceed to develop. Discover them by going to and clicking on the Search menu on the prime of the web page. Here is a few of what we’ve to supply on-line.

Tales and Pictures

The Analysis part of hosts a big assortment of photographs and tales scanned for straightforward entry. This contains every part from historic publications and applications celebrating historic milestones, to photographs displaying Des Moines at evening within the early twentieth century, postcards, road maps of the Previous City, and extra.

Our Flickr collections additionally supply a superb look into the previous. The colour prints present scenes from the outdated Riverview Park, the Previous Central Library, and the looks of Walnut Road as cars started to roll off the meeting traces. There are 10 totally different albums, every containing dozens of photographs and prints. (You will discover them by visiting the Analysis pages on

An archived digital image of Riverview Park (1928) from the Des Moines Public Library Special Collection.


A simple solution to begin researching native historical past is thru our assortment of metropolis directories. Directories include an alphabetical itemizing of companies, companies, and people, together with their historic handle when accessible. This stuff are additionally sorted by mailing handle and quantity, making it straightforward to seek out out what outdated companies or homes had been at present addresses. The Des Moines Public Library has digitized historic directories from 1860 to 1922 accessible on-line, in addition to printed directories from 1910 to the current and phone directories from 1957 to right now accessible for in-person viewing on the Central Library.

Des Moines Venture

For an in-depth have a look at some native area of interest tales, take a look at our new digital useful resource, Venture Des Moines. Every Des Moines Venture “story” supplies details about an individual, place or particular occasion in Des Moines historical past and contains nice photographs. You may rapidly be taught concerning the historical past of streetcars and carriages in Des Moines, together with after they spanned downtown rivers. You may be taught why an condo constructing on Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway has “BRASSERIE” painted on the entrance of it. Relive the 1973 blizzard that threw a foot of snow on the subway and be taught extra concerning the lifetime of Hoyt Sherman (sure, he is associated to well-known Civil Warfare Normal William Tecumseh Sherman).

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Secondary college directories

Revisit your individual story by consulting our digital assortment of Des Moines highschool directories. The library has digitized a whole bunch of yearbooks of all present Des Moines excessive faculties, in addition to excessive faculties now defunct, comparable to West Excessive and Technical Excessive. Discover out concerning the previous at

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