The roots of Des Moines trace back to the establishment of Fort Des Moines in 1843. It was founded where Raccoon and Des Moines rivers merge. Des Moines was initially built as a stronghold for the welfare of the Fox and Sak tribes. There are disputes as to the right origin of Des Moines. A native group called the Moingona platted out the village on the river, and it was recorded on Jacques Marquette’s map.
In 1845, the Iowa River Valley welcomed new residents. When Iowa became a state in 1846, its population reached more than 120 residents. The name of the city was changed into Des Moines following the city adoption in 1857. In January 1858, Des Moines became the official state capital.
During the Civil War, Des Moines offered significant support to the cause of the troops. Women from Des Moines signed a petition saying that they will work in place of the men, so they can help fight for the Union cause. However, they were able to recruit enough number of males to fill the gap. In 1875, following the Civil War, Des Moines became the venue for President Ulysses S. Grant’s speech, where he emphasized his commitment to equality.
Des Moines had an era of construction and renovation in the last part of the nineteenth century. In 884, the capitol state building featuring a gold-gilded central dome was constructed. Business people in the city built mansions in the 1890s. The cultural scene of the city thrived from then on.
Des Moines is filled with vibrant and rich historical events. Kelly’s Army, directed by Charles T. Kelly, arrived in 1894. They were welcomed by the residents with warmth and hospitality to avoid any conflicts with them. Locals of the city built an industrial fleet of 150 flatboats when Kelly’s Army didn’t leave the city. The townspeople used the fleets to transport them out of the city.
Des Moines has been known for many things since its establishment up to this day. The Des Moines established municipal government and took note of the development. The plan is the pioneer of its kind in the entire United States. The first training center for the Women’s Army Corps was established in Fort Des Moines, which put the city in the spotlight. After the city became a publishing and a national insurance center, it has developed and expanded since. The National Municipal League called Des Moines as the All-American City in 1949. After Des Moines committed over $300 million to the city’s restoration as well as the historic districts of Court Avenue and Sherman Hills, Des Moines once again gained honor.
A great flood from the Raccoon River in the summer of 1993, temporarily halted the growth of the city. Iowa was named the national disaster area and suffered approximately $250 million casualty and damages. Des Moines boomed with construction and renovation in the 2000s.
New buildings are built, including science museums, a library, and a conference venue at the beginning of the 21st century. Locals of the city appreciate the city’s atmosphere and the great educational and cultural amenities the city offers.
Click here for more information about Des Moines, IA.