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iowa orphanage

iowa orphanage

Posted: 8 Jul 2006 2:27AM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Gridley, Pray
My grandfather was born in Des Moines in 1906, then adopted in 1907-08 approx. He was in a children's home, Christian Childrens Home? in Des Moines prior to adoption. Was about 18 mo. old. Carol Gridley was adopted name, believe Pray was name when born. Any ideas on records or name of home would be appreciated.

Re: iowa orphanage

Posted: 28 Jul 2006 11:07PM GMT
Classification: Query
This citation is for a directory of orphanages I saw :

UNITED STATES. Census, Bureau of the. "Children under Institutional Care and in Foster Homes, 1933: Dependent and Neglected Children under the Care of Public and Private Institutions or Agencies, Not Including Juvenile Delinquents."

Page 78 lists the institutions in Iowa, including Christ Child Home in Des Moines, but that was a Catholic facility. If grandpa was not of that faith, consider the Christian Home Association, but that was in Council Bluffs, IA in 1933.

Most of the information was used in my compilation of the out-of-print book titled, "Adoption Agencies, Orphanages and Maternity Homes--An Historical Directory." The WorldCat data base lists 147 libraries in the U.S. that have copies of the Directory.

If you wish to see an earlier directory, try this :

UNITED STATES. Census, Bureau of the. "Benevolent Institutions, 1904." [Washington, D.C.: Govt. Print. Off.], 1905. 335 p. A directory of 4,207 institutions (excluding 85), with their addresses and statistics: orphanages, hospitals, temporary homes for adults and children, etc. Includes a single alphabetical index to the institutions.

Good luck from Reg Niles

Re: iowa orphanage

Posted: 23 Feb 2012 4:23AM GMT
Classification: Query
my mother came out of the orphanage in des moines around 1913 i'll have to do some digging if you still need that info.

Re: iowa orphanage

Posted: 12 Apr 2013 4:18PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: gridley pray
Late to reply I know but just saw this post, if still possible would like info....many thanks

Re: iowa orphanage

Posted: 17 Jun 2013 12:23AM GMT
Classification: Query
there were many homes and buildings that housed orphans & children who were taken from their families for whatever reason. The main building burned along with the records in the 1960's. My mother was in Des Moines Home For Friendless Children, it was on 2018 High St. It's a parking lot today.
I recommend searching your grandpa's name in records on's US Directories.
I have attached a copy of an advertisment from Des MOines with a children's home for you that might give you some help.
Nearly every orphanage in the state of Iowa was connected through the city of Des Moines(capitol) and were owned and sponsored by many church denominations. Lutheran's being the biggest operators. There were homes in Eldora, Toledo, Bremwood, Mitchellville all in Iowa.
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