City of Des Moines Parks and Recreation Department

2022 Woodland Monument Restoration

September 22nd - October 7th, 2022
Woodland Cemetery, 2019 Woodland Avenue

Join us in preserving Des Moines' history!

Designated in 1986 as a local historic landmark, efforts are underway to protect and preserve the memories and stories of the 80,000 buried within Woodland Cemetery. Over the years, dirt, lichens, mold, and mildew have taken a toll on the stones and some that are porous (sandstone and limestone) have broken them down.

Maintenance of stones typically is the responsibility of the owner but in this cemetery, many of the families have moved away or are long since passed. A generous gift from the community is allowing staff, contractors, and volunteers to restore stones and protect the memories and history within this cemetery. The first phase of the project was lifting, straightening, and securing stones that have shifted over time. Now, volunteers and staff will work together in small groups to gently hand clean the stones.


HISTORY: 

In 1848, five local farmers donated 5.5 acres of land to create Woodland Cemetery. Originally known as Fort Des Moines Cemetery, the first burial in this historical cemetery happened in 1850 and the City of Des Moines took ownership in 1857. In 1864, the City added 36.5 acres and was expanded to 69 acres later.

The stories told by the monuments and headstones combine to form the history of the city as it has passed through wars, epidemics, and natural disasters as well as the normal course of birth, life, and death. Passing through you see stone etchings of the names of many citizens from our past who helped build Des Moines.  Names part of everyday life in our city's landscape, streets, parks, schools, and buildings like Savery, Kenworthy, Ingersoll, Hubbell, Kaplan, Perkins, Teachout, Fleur, Redhead, Polk, and Sherman.  

COVID-19: 

The City of Des Moines cannot guarantee that the volunteer or any of the event attendees will not become infected with COVID-19.  Volunteers and attendees use the City’s facility at their own risk.  

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For accommodations or allergies, please notify staff at parksvolunteer@dmgov.org or call (515)237-1386 as soon as possible so we can make sure to plan a safe and fun volunteer experience.
I hereby certify that all statements made and information submitted applicable to volunteering with the City of Des Moines, Iowa are true and contain no misrepresentation. *
Do you accept and agree to the attached Volunteer Release and Waiver of Liability, Assumption of Risk Agreement, and Photo Release? *

Waiver

In consideration of me, or my minor child, being permitted to participate in any way in the above named Volunteer Program, I, the Undersigned, for myself and my minor child, all of my or my minor child's, personal representatives, executors, administrators, heirs, next of kin, successors and assigns, herein referred to as "Releasors", do hereby:

1. Acknowledge that this volunteer service carries with it the potential for serious injury, death, and/or property damage, and certify as to my physical fitness and that of my minor child to participate and declare that neither I nor my minor child, have been advised otherwise by a qualified medical professional.

2. Acknowledge, agree, and represent that I and my minor child will, at all times, be aware of the surroundings during the volunteer service and agree that if I or my minor child consider anything related to this Activity to be unsafe, will immediately advise the Activity officials of such, and if necessary, will leave the area or refuse to participate further in the volunteer service.

3. Waive, release and discharge, and covenant not to sue, the City of Des Moines, Iowa, its elected and appointed officials, employees, volunteers, sponsors, and agents, including others who give recommendations, directions, or instructions as part of this volunteer service, hereinafter referred to as "City", from any and all liability to Releasors, except for my minor child, for any and all loss or damage, and any claim or demands therefor, on account of injury to the person, including illness or complications associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, or property or resulting in my death or that of my minor child arising out of or related to the volunteer service, including traveling to or from the volunteer
service.

4. Agree to Indemnify and Save and Hold Harmless the City and each of them from any loss, liability, damage, or cost that they may incur arising out of or related to my or my minor child's participation in this volunteer service.

5. Assume full responsibility for any risk of bodily injury, including illness or complications associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, death or property damage arising out of or related to the volunteer service. I agree to comply with all applicable safety rules, including wearing protective clothing, close-toed shoes/boots, safety goggles, gloves, and vest while performing my volunteer activities.

6. Agree that this Release and Waiver of Liability and Assumption of Risk Agreement and Photo Release extends to all acts of negligence by the City, not including gross negligence and willful misconduct, and is intended to be as broad and inclusive as is permitted by law including any governmental immunity afforded the City by law and that if any portion thereof is held invalid, it is agreed that the balance shall, notwithstanding, continue in full legal force and effect.

7. Authorize any medical treatment, including the administration of anesthesia, deemed advisable by any licensed physician to relieve any injuries received or illness contracted by me or my minor child as a participant in this volunteer service. I hereby agree to pay all costs of any medical treatment or emergency transportation.

8. Authorize and consent to the City, its sponsors, and any news media, and their successors and assigns and those acting under their authority, to take, publish, use in any media, and copyright photographs, videotape or other and audio or visual media, including broadcast in any media, of me or my minor child and agree that such may be used for any lawful purpose without further compensation or approval.

I have read this Release and Waiver and Assumption of Risk Agreement and Photo Release, fully understand its terms, understand that I have given up substantial rights by signing it, and sign it voluntarily without assurance or guarantee being made to me and intend my signature to be a complete and unconditional release of all liability to the fullest extent permitted by law, including all acts of negligence by the City as stated above. I agree that this Agreement and Photo Release will be IN EFFECT for 5 YEARS from the date of
my signature, unless otherwise terminated by me in writing delivered to the City.