African Americans in Des Moines Iowa

Promoting the existence of the African American community of Des Moines.

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58 Comments

Reply Iva C. Hawkins
6:41 PM on June 1, 2014 
As an Iowan, recently becoming an orphan now that all my elder relative's have deceased, I went into the registry of the Des Moines newspaper and found many people who I was not aware passed. Marcel Hawkins/east side, Marva Hill, Lamar Tyson, Kalib Mohammed and some others. I found it to be relative to where I'm at in my life. I also found a friend of mine as a teenager, Ruthie Banks Johnson who married Harold Johnson who was from Des Moines and had passed away. Boobie White (Robert) deceased. Clyde Duncan who had gotten many awards since leaving Des Moines, a statue as a token of the Drake Relays/1960 era. Judge Glanton, the only AA judge during that time has been honored recently. Infact, he has a foundation. Robert Wright was one of the first AA attorney's and has established some foundations.
We have some large families that come out of Des Moines during that era that should be recognized and where are they now. It's significant. Families after 70 come at a different time and I would not have the history with them but the years prior, they were marvelous years.
Reply Honesty Parker
6:37 PM on June 1, 2014 
Hello everyone
I have not been active on this site for a little while but am going to be back working on new info and pics .
Reply Yvonne Sagers
2:00 PM on May 31, 2014 
Wonderful site. Thank you for your dedication and time to offer this contribution to the history of Des Moines and all the African American families. I hope you will continue this site.
Your Cousin, Bonnie
Reply Iva Hawkins
5:38 PM on May 19, 2014 
Are you, under obituaries taking on new deceased persons? Marva Hill/Williams/Washington, Larmar Tyson, Marcell Hawkins and some others have passed away within the last year or so. I'm sure their are many others and I am wondering if your staying abreast of them. I was looking at the Iowa Days clubs around the country and because they too are dieing out, they don't seem to have that being something that would be of interest to us who do not live in the city or have very few contacts within the city anymore. Some information also comes through Classmates.com, Tech, Roosevelt, North, Dowling, East. I think what your doing is very nice. I saw a big article on Clyde Duncan, Marvin Elliston selling some of his art. A lot of education came out of Des Moines that we should be proud of.
Reply Hon. Carole Davis Kennerly
8:45 AM on February 28, 2014 
Simplyhonesty, Thank your for all your work and dedication to this website. My name is Carole Kennerly and I am a native of Des Moines. My late brother, Harold aka Butchie/Butch Kennerly was a well-liked, outstanding athlete. We both attended Nash elementary school, Irving Jr. High and Des Moines Tech High School. I attended Drake University and graduated from State University of Iowa and Howard University, Washington, D.C. My late parents are Chrystal Florence Kennerly and Raymond B. Kennerly.. They migrated to Des Moines in 1939-40 from Shelbina/Shelbyville, Missouri.
Reply DeLisa McGregory
11:34 PM on November 3, 2013 
My great grandfather was George Washington Davis, coal miner and died in the coal mines in 1931. He was in WW1 and he married Dora Johnson Davis from Buxton, Iowa, where they lived until moving to Des Moines. George Washington Davis was born on August 25, 1874, and he died January 30, 1931.
My great grandfather always said that when he died, he wanted to die in the coal mines, so his family would be taken care of... and that is where he died. I was glad to see his name in your list of Coal Miners as I was surfing the web about him and the coal mines of Iowa and stumbled upon your website. Thank you.
Reply Deborah Hall-Tanksley
8:35 PM on August 7, 2013 
Deborah Hall-Tanksley says...
Hi Honesty - Have you come across the WALKER FAMILY - Frances, Lloyd, Prince, William and Charles. the mother and father was John and Martha Jane (Ray) Walker. That would be my grandmother and her family all from Des Moines....
Reply wwwcwj
4:24 PM on March 22, 2013 
Just saying hello. My mother, Janice Wadsworth-Johnson is from Des Moines. Her mother was Wanda Henry and her father was Everett Wadworth. I saw a picture of my grandmother's twin siblings (my uncle Lester and my aunt Lessie Henry) in your book, and also found a high school picture of my aunt on this website.

I know that my great-grandfather, Monroe B. Wadworth was a coal miner. Can his name be added to your list?

Looks like you're doing great work! If you have more pictures or information, please let me know. I occasionally dabble on Ancestry.com and find bits and pieces here and there.
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