Land Use History and Historic Property Potential for the Des Moines Recreational River and Greenbelt Proposed Raccoon River Regional Park, West Des Moines, Iowa
OFFICE OF THE STATE ARCHAEOLOGIST OF IOWA IOWA CITY
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This project represents the results of a land use history study for the proposed Raccoon River Regional Park in West Des Moines, Iowa. This study involved archival research, oral history interviews, and field reconnaissance to determine the potential for significant historic properties within the boundaries of the proposed park. This area has been heavily impacted by extensive sand quarrying for over 40 years, and it was questioned as to whether there was any potential at all for intact historic properties. Archival and oral historical research into the land use history of this area indicated that, historically, the majority of the project area was relatively inaccessible and flood prone throughout the nineteenth century, thus inhibiting actual settlement until the early twentieth century when river channel changes made the area more accessible. One farmstead was known to have been located within the borders of the project area, although portions were subsequently destroyed by the sand and gravel mining operation.
- Humanities and History
- Hydrology, Limnology and Potamology
- Civil Engineering