THE SPIRIT OF BEAVERDALE
Rice Public Elementary School in Beaverdale was named in honor of this gentleman:
first appointed teacher,
first superintendent of
first organized school district in old Ft. Des Moines in 1849.
It is no surprise how Beaverdale became a strongly anchored community
"A sense of community and commitment existed early on in the development of the area with the building of a s school and churches at what was the heart of the area, the corner of Beaver and Adams Avenues."
"Mrs. W. C. Church wrote that in 1907 the Urbandale Improvement League was formed to get a school, church and roads. That league was the predecessor of today's Beaverdale Business and Professional Association."
"In 1909 construction began on Byron Rice School and in 1910 it was ready for the first school day. "
"Dr. Denny in Centennial Reflections wrote that the school became a social center with programs and speakers on intellectual topics and a Sunday School was conducted prior to the construction of an area church. Prior to the advent of electricity, parents brought parlor lamps and lanterns to meetings held at the school."
--The Spirit of Beaverdale
Researched and Compiled by Jean Griffin, 1987
The Spirit of Beaverdale: Celebrate the Namesake of Rice Field
"In 1914 Urbandale Federated Church [First Federated Church*] was organized and located at the corner of Beaver and Adams Avenues. Fev. W.J. Lockhart a Des Moines evangelist was instrumetnal in organizing this church. Land was given by Mrs. E.B. Fagan, mother-in-law of Rev. Lockhart. $8,000. was pledged and a tabernacle was raised by the men of the church in two days. Bryon Rice School was used by the women to feed the men during the church construction."
*When First Federated was destroyed by fire, it was relocated to 4801 Franklin
"Holy Trinity Catholic Church was built in 1920...
Holy Trinity and Urbandale Federated Churches portrayed an ecumenical spirit when Holy Trinity allowed use of its school for Sunday School classes during a construction phase of Urbandale Federated."
"Rice today  has an enrollment of 593 students in classes from kindergarten through sixth grade. It has special classes for those who need additional help and for those who are gifted. Earnest young musicians may take private lessons as well as participate in the school program of music. Recess finds the school ground covered with healthy, happy children. Nor does the activity stop when the school day is over. Pack 92 of the Cub Scouts uses the auditorium for their pack meetings. Little League uses the playground in summer for games and practice. When room is available, Adult Education are held at the school It has been the polls for voting in elections for many years. Thus the school named Byron Rice on the corner of Beaver and Adams has truly been a crossroads of democracy since the day of its first planning. It brought the people of Beaverdale together to plan for the school. For fifty years it has held them together--uniting them with a common purpose--the welfare of the children. Second and third generations of the early founder of the school have traversed its corridors."
--The Spirit of Beaverdale, researched and compiled by Jean L. Griffin, 1987
History of Traffic Concerns on Beaver
Anyone trying to enter Beaver along the City's protected residential corridor on Beaver (Adams to Amick Avenues)
experiences traffic issues.
As far back as 1916 measures were taken to calm traffic:
"Byron Rice School officials were also concerned about the traffic even before the paving, when in 1916 they appointed two men as special police to stop auto speeding in front of the schoolhouse."
---The Spirit of Beaverdale, researched and Compiled by Jean L. Griffin, 1987