Woodland Cemetery

Over 500 New Headstones layed

Dedication was April 23, 2017

This project was for headstones of babies that died over 100 years ago. They had been in unmarked graves since the late 1800’s, early 1900’s. Two years ago my DAR chapter took over the project from Gerald LaBlanc. He had been able to raise enough money to place 196 headstones out of a total of 536. We set a goal of one year to raise $40,000. As a chapter we raised just over $12,000. But we had reached our deadline and felt that we had to formally wrap it up. I was not able to let go of the babies that were still unmarked. After a chance encounter with LT. Governor Kim Reynolds I wrote a request for funds to Governor Branstad’s history fund. Long story short, his fund contributed $10,000 and he personally raised the rest from three other people. There was a man there that was a descendant of one of the babies families. (the baby was the sister of his gg grandmother) As a result, I am hoping that these headstones can be included in any database, Find a Grave, etc.

Article from The Des Moines Register

Our thanks goes out to Kristine Bartley for bringing this information to our attention, taking wonderful pictures, and having the heart to keep going. Thank you Kristine.

These metal marker corresponded to the names in a ledger

From this:
metal markers


To this:
stone replacements


And this:
stone replacements

To the Final Product!

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