Sevastopol started as a settlement south of Des Moines around 1855. It was laid out by James Sherman, was recorded on July 21, 1862, and incorporated in 1877 or 1878 (varies with source). Its boundaries were SE 5th, Hartford Ave, Bell Avenue and Pioneer Park. It is said to have been named by John Webber after a Russian, now Ukrainian, fortress that was well-known during the Crimean War. A large brewery and the largest coal mine in the county were there. The brewery was located at SE 6th and Hartford Avenue.
The Sevastopol brewery was built in 1857 and after several years it was sold to G. Munzenmaier who later sold it to John Webber. The Annals of Polk County and Des Moines reports that it was closed in 1884 “by force of law.”
There was a Sevastopol trolley line up until 1940 when bus lines took over. At that time, Sevastopol was removed from the main line. Des Moines annexed Sevastopol in 1890 along with several other communities.
Sevastopol is now in the McKinley/Columbus Park neighborhood.
Andreas, A.T. Polk County, Iowa. Illustrated Historical Atlas of Iowa, 1875. Accessed through the David Rumsey Map Collection.
Bartholomew, Harland. A Preliminary Major Street Plan for Des Moines, Iowa, 1925.
Denny, Robert R, LeRoy G. Pratt, and Bill M. Clark. Perspectives of Polk County History, 1988.
Porter, William. Annals of Polk County, Iowa, and the City of Des Moines, 1898.
Neighbor’s Hotline. “Reader Asks About Sevastopol.” Des Moines Register 03 June 1992.