Clio Logo

The Polk County Courthouse was built in 1906 and is one of the most beautiful buildings in Des Moines. Designed by the prominent architecture firm Proudfoot & Bird, the courthouse is a notable example of the Beaux-Arts style. The building is the third courthouse to serve Polk County; it replaced the second one built in 1862. The courthouse features countless design elements including arches, Corinthian columns, pavilions, and an enormous tower that has clocks on all four sides. Inside, the building features a domed rotunda and several murals painted by Charles A. Cummings and Edwdard Simmons. The courthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.


  • Polk County Courthouse was built in 1906.
Klingensmith, S. J. "Polk County Courthouse." National Park Service - National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form. April 30, 1979.  https://npgallery.nps.gov/NRHP/GetAsset/NRHP/79000925_text.

"Polk County Courthouse." Iowa Judicial Branch. Accessed April 11, 2019.  https://www.iowacourts.gov/for-the-public/iowa-courts-history/iowa-county-courthouse-history/polk-county-courthouse.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polk_County_Courthouse_(Iowa)#/media/File:Polk_County_Courthouse;_Des_Moines,_Iowa;_July_2,_2013.JPG