Sherman Hill is Des Moines’ oldest neighborhood. From its beginnings in the 1870s until today, this neighborhood has maintained a prominent place in the city’s heritage and its architecture has earned distinction as Des Moines’ first local historical district in 1982.

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The past of Sherman Hill comes to life in this video, covering what the neighborhood was like around the turn of the century, from its post-WWI decline through the 1970s and its eventual revitalization by a group of preservationists.

There are numerous factors that draw people to Sherman Hill and have helped fuel the renaissance of the neighborhood. Sherman Hill is an “urban” neighborhood that offers a rare concentration of rich architecture and history that can be found few places in the Des Moines metropolitan area. The proximity of Sherman Hill to downtown, the Ingersoll and Cottage Grove Business Districts, and Iowa Methodist Medical Center all contribute to Sherman Hill’s desirability.

Sherman Hill became one of the City’s first recognized neighborhood associations in 1993. In recent years the Sherman Hill Association has succeeded in its efforts to enhance more aspects of quality of life in the neighborhood. That dedication has resulted in many improvements to the area. Among their more notable accomplishments are the addition of historic street lighting, the success of the annual Walking Tour, the preservation of homes slated for demolition in other parts of the city, and reduction in crime, increased property values and numerous rehabilitation projects spearheaded by the residents and the association.

Continue reading about the history of Sherman Hill: