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Old Des Moines

Photos and images of Des Moines, IA from the past 100 years

Younkers Department Store Warehouse, 800 block Mulberry, 1940's downtown Des Moines

Grateful Dead, Iowa State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, June 16, 1974

Downtown Des Moines Ruan Building, under construction. Cor-Ten steel exterior panels being affixed to the building

Financial Center, downtown Des Moines, under construction 1972-1973

Derby Gas Station Sign... Pester, it's a gas!

Snow day fun on the Court Ave hill SW of the Sate Capitol. Photo could date from the 1920's to early 1930's.

West side of the Montgomery Ward department store downtown Des Moines, 1960's. Located on the SE corner of 5th and Locust. Capital Square occupies this space today.

Veterans Memorial Auditorium, under construction - 1954. This at the time was partially a residential neighborhood [see house at far right] positioned between downtown Des Moines and Mercy Hospital, years before the construction of I-235

Iowa State Fair [Des Moines] west gate, East Grand Avenue, 1950's. Until the 1970's, you could drive your car in to all areas of the fairgrounds.

Unknown Parade [perhaps annual State Fair Parade?] on East Walnut Street is what now East Village. Saydel High School marching band shown - 1950's

There were several of these A&W Root beer drive-in's around the Des Moines area. One over by the airport on the south side, and in West Des Moines.

Last year for Rock Island Rocket passenger train service in Des Moines, 1969

Downtown Des Moines, IA, Equitable Building under construction, August 1924

Des Moines Fire Department, Ford American La France fire truck, early 1960's

Des Moines, IA NW corner of 6th and Forest Avenues, 1950's

1.31.13 / 6:30 pm Lecture: The History of the Des Moines Art Center, take the Ingersoll Curliner

Des Moines Art Center

4th Street, north of Downtown Des Moines [looking north], early 1950's. Areas in the upper half of the photo are now the Vet's Auditorium, Hy-Vee Hall, Wells Fargo Arena area. St. Mary's Church [steeple visible 2nd & Crocker] on the left was demolished in early 1960's. The apartment building in the right center of the photo survived until Hy-Vee Hall was built in that location.

I-235 Des Moines River bridge under construction - 2nd Ave. on-ramp, 1963. View is looking to the east.

Bookmobile on its regular route, 1950's

Downtown Des Moines from the air, looking north, 1956

Rock Island Railroad station, West Des Moines in its original location, late 1940's / early 1950's. The building exists today. It has been moved several blocks to the south part of Valley Junction [Railroad Pl. between 4th 5th]. Currently the offices of a Hospice organization.

Holmes Oldsmobile, new car showroom, 6th Avenue north side of downtown Des Moines, 1961

Commissary, Fort Des Moines, during WWII. During WWII the post was home to thousands of WAC's - women Army officers

Des Moines Freeway [I-235] under construction looking west, late 1950's early 1960's. Near the current 6th Avenue exit. Visible in the upper right is one of the surviving neighborhood fire stations. The building still exists today as a private residence. Located SW of DMACC Urban Campus. IN the background is the 9th St. bridge.