Des Moines Local History Books
(Available on Archive.org):
> Centennial History of Polk County, Iowa - J.M. Dixon, 1876
> The City of Certainties: The New Des Moines - Des Moines, 1911?
> Des Moines: Facts and Figures - Des Moines Mail & Times.
> Des Moines and Polk County City Directories (1866-1922) – various publishers
> Des Moines Illustrated Souvenir - Iowa Historical Illustrative Co., 1896
> Index to Street Naming Ordinance, City of Des Moines, 1908
> Night in Des Moines, New York Newcomb Pub. Co., 1912
> Historical Reminiscences of the City of Des Moines, H.B. Turrill, 1857
> Pioneers of Polk County (Volume 1)- Lorenzo F. Andrews, 1908
> Pioneers of Polk County (Volume 2) - Lorenzo F. Andrews, 1908
> A Preliminary Major Street Plan of Des Moines, Iowa - Harland Bartholomew, 1899
> Souvenir of Des Moines, Iowa - L. H. Nelson & Co.
Books in our Collection:
These are a few of the books at the Central Library, 1000 Grand Avenue, that deal with the history of Des Moines. To check for copies at other branches, please click on the author’s name or search our catalog.
Brigham, Johnson. Des Moines, the Pioneer of Municipal Progress and Reform of the Middle West, Together with the History of Polk County, Iowa. Chicago, The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1911. 2 vols.
Dahl, Orin. Des Moines: Capital City. Tulsa, Oklahoma. Continental Heritage, 1978
Dressler, Richard. Two Rivers Flowing: Recent Archaeology in Downtown Des Moines, Iowa. Des Moines, Iowa: City of Des Moines, 2005.
Gary, Thomas A. The Rise and Fall of Center Street, 1945-1972. Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University, 2003.
Hammer, Ilda May. The Book of Des Moines. Des Moines, Board of Education, 1947.
Jacobsen, James. Building a City of Homes: Des Moines, Iowa, 1900-1951. Des Moines, Iowa: History Pays!, 2002.
Jacobsen, James. Des Moines First “West End” and Its Transition from Residential Neighborhood to Auto Row, from a Commercial District to the Western Gateway: A Historical Architectural Report. Des Moines, Iowa: History Pays!, 2002.
Jacobsen, James. “If They’d Just Blow Up the Bridges, We Would Be All Right”: A History of Highland Park, Oak Park and the “Parks District” of Des Moines, Iowa, 1888-1997. Des Moines, Iowa: J.E. Jacobsen, 1997.
Long, Barbara Beving. Des Moines and Polk County: Flag on the Prairie. Sun Valley, CA , American Historical Press, 2003.
McCue, Craig. Des Moines, 1845-1920. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2006.
Orwig, Louise. The Des Moines Association of Fine Arts. Des Moines, Iowa. Art Department, Public Library of Des Moines, 1987. Compiled during the 1930′s and 1940′s.
Page, William C. Towards a Greater Des Moines: Development and Early Suburbanization, Circa 1880-Circa 1920. Des Moines, Iowa: City of Des Moines, 1996-1998. (6 volumes)
Page, William C. Walking to Work: Victorian Life in Des Moines. Des Moines, Iowa: Des Moines Metropolitan Transit Authority, 1997.
Porter, Will. Annals of Polk County, Iowa, and City of Des Moines. Des Moines, IA: Geo. A. Miller Printing Co., 1898.
For more listings, click here.