Urbandale Historical Society Buildings
4010 70th Street, Urbandale, Iowa 50322

About Us
Olmsted-Urband House
City History
Pictures and Videos

About Us

The Urbandale Historical Society was organized in 1975 by a small group of residents meeting at the Urbandale Library and later at Olmsted School. The first presidents were Larry Hindert, Edwin Spiller, Robert Lamb, and Dave Hartsook. Madeline Kaloides took office in 1986.

In 1987 the property at 4010 70th Street was purchased from John Urban and restoration work began on what was to be known as the Olmsted-Urban House. Planning was needed for fund raising and grants. Many volunteers spent hours to preserve the House, organize materials and acquire memorabilia related to Urbandale’s history. After 13 years, Madeline chose to ‘retire’ and in May 2001 Wayne Robbins took on the role of president. Many other board members have worked for a number of years for the Society.

Financial support comes from member dues, donations, fundraising projects, and grants from BRAVO Greater Des Moines, Endow Urbandale, and Gabus Automotive Group. These funds are used for expenses, property maintenance, and programs in accordance with the purpose of the Urbandale Historical Society in this community.

Where to Find Us

The Urbandale Historical Society is located at 4010 - 70th St., Urbandale, Iowa 50322.
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Purpose and Objectives

The purpose of the Urbandale Historical Society shall be to collect, preserve and maintain historical memorabilia of Urbandale.

The objectives of the Society are to educate and to make available to all people information pertinent to the development and growth of the area immediately surrounding and including the city of Urbandale, Polk County, and Iowa.

Future Goals

  • Increase membership in the Historical Society and members’ participation
  • Continue historical research and collection
  • Prepare educational displays in the barn
  • Continue improvement to the rooms of the Olmsted-Urban House
  • Complete major maintenance projects for the upkeep of the property
  • Increase long-range fundraising efforts
  • Encourage greater community involvement

Use of the Olmsted-Urban House and Barn

Headquarters for the Urbandale Historical Society - a place to house and to make available historical information and memorabilia of Urbandale and the surrounding area. Open to the public on a regular basis.

A partial restoration (back to the 1920s and 1930s) of the Olmsted-Urban House which was built in 1904.

A place to represent a slice of life reminiscent of that at ‘Grandmother’s House’ in a small town during the 1920s and 1930s. A place to hold a variety of special activities and events to promote community spirit and interest in Urbandale.

A place where groups or organizations with members interested in learning more about Urbandale or in promoting Urbandale can meet on an occasional basis (The House is not available for private parties or commercial events).

A place where school children and youth groups can get a sense of Urbandale’s roots, and gain a better understanding of life in this area in the twenties and thirties.

Current Officers  
President ----- Norm Huitt

Vice President -----

Cynthia Dabrieo
Secretary ----- Kay Readinger
Treasurer ----- Jo Henry
Programs ----- Bob Simon
Local History ----- Virginia Gee and Meribeth Haynes
Buildings and Grounds ----- Norm Huitt and Pat Finnerty
Publicity ----- Cynthia Dabrieo
Restoration and Acquisitions ----- Beth Haigh
Special Projects ----- Ginny Campbell and Carol Lee Riekenberg

Special Contacts

To donate historical items, pictures, or memorabilia related to Urbandale, contact Beth Haigh, or Virginia Gee.

To help with house maintenance, yard work, landscaping, or garden work, contact Norm Huitt and Pat Finnerty.

To place an order for a memorial brick to be placed in the ‘walk of history’. Three lines of printing for $35.00, contact Bob Simon.

To schedule a group tour of the Olmsted-Urban House, contact Beth Haigh.

To establish a memorial, make a special donation, or honor someone, contact Beth Haigh, or Virginia Gee.

If you have a question or wish to contact the Urbandale Historical Society, please call 515-270-2917 and leave a message on the answering machine regarding your area of interest.


Learn more about the Urbandale Historical Society, its history, events sponsored, opportunities for volunteers and goals for the future.

Interview with Virginia Gee, long-time Board Member, at the Olmsted-Urban House. - Interview Spring 2011 Virginia Gee Video


Urbandale Historical Society
4010 - 70th St., Urbandale, Iowa 50322 ~ 515-270-2917


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