The West Des Moines Historical Society is a 501(c)3 volunteer-based organization dedicated to community enrichment through education, preservation, and celebration of the history and the heritage of the greater West Des Moines area and its environs.
The idea of establishing a historical society for the City of West Des Moines was conceived in 1968 as plans were made for the city’s Diamond Jubilee. Two years later, in 1970, the West Des Moines Historical Society was formed. The mission of the Society is to educate, to preserve, and to promote the heritage and history of West Des Moines. To this end, the Society purchased the Jordan House in 1978. Through the efforts of the Society, the business community and the volunteer organizations of West Des Moines, the dream of transforming Jordan house into a museum became a reality. The major initial restoration was completed in 1993, the centennial year of West Des Moines. Since that time the West Des Moines Historical Society has also acquired and restored the Bennett School, the last one room school houses built and used in West Des Moines. These two facilities together with the growing collections of memorabilia and historical information form the core of the West Des Moines Historical Society’s collection.