Help preserve the past with a future gift to our Baker-McFadden Legacy Circle

The West Des Moines Historical Society has formed a Baker-McFadden Legacy Circle to recognize those who have chosen to remember the WDMHS with future gifts identified in their estate plans.

Planned gifts to our Legacy Circle will help assure that WDMHS will have future funds available to preserve and share the stories and artifacts celebrating West Des Moines rich history.

There are many ways to support the Baker-McFadden Legacy Circle and remembering the WDMHS in your will and estate plans is one way to ensure that your assets will be managed and distributed as you wish after your passing.

The process can be a rewarding opportunity to contemplate what matters to you and the legacy you want to leave to those around you.

Members of the Legacy Society will be recognized (unless anonymous) in our newsletters, annual reports, website and appropriately on social media.  In addition, members will be listed on a plaque proudly displayed at the Jordan House for all those who enter to see and receive recognition at our Baker-McFadden Legacy Circle sponsored events.

If you have not established an estate plan yet, you can begin by developing an inventory of your assets including:

  • Bank accounts
  • Business interests
  • Insurance policies
  • Retirement plans, such as an IRA, Roth IRA, 401(k), or 403(b)
  • Real property
  • Stocks and mutual funds
  • Tangible personal property, such as jewelry, art, or books

Next, we recommend you speak with a professional financial planner or attorney to consult on your financial, tax, and estate planning options and discuss your personal, financial, and charitable goals.

Items that should result from this consultation include:

  • A will that states your final wishes regarding the distribution of your assets and is administered by your executor and the court after your death.
  • A general durable power of attorney, which allows someone you trust to make financial, business, and legal decisions for you should you become incapacitated.
  • A health care directive, which outlines your treatment wishes if you are unable to make your own decisions.
  • Beneficiary designations, which transfer the remaining assets in your IRA, Roth IRA, 401(k), 403(b), life insurance, savings accounts, and other assets.

Specific Ways You Can Support the West Des Moines Historical Society

During your planning, we encourage you to consider naming the West Des Moines Historical Society in your estate plans.  Some of the ways include:

  • Naming the West Des Moines Historical Society in your will.
  • Naming the West Des Moines Historical Society as a beneficiary to your retirement plans or insurance policies.
  • Donating stocks or bonds.
  • Leaving a gift of real estate such as a home, vacation property or land.

If you have already included the West Des Moines Historical Society in your estate plans, we would greatly appreciate hearing from you so we can properly recognize you.

Vicki Baker & Bonnie McFadden

Vicki and Bonnie were amazing volunteers in the early days of the West Des Moines Historical Society and instrumental in saving the Jordan House from demolition. Once this landmark was saved, Vicki and Bonnie continued pouring their blood, sweat and tears into restoration, fundraising and educating our community on the story of the Underground Railroad. There would be no West Des Moines Historical Society without Vicki and Bonnie. Therefore, the society’s board of directors determined it appropriate to name the newly established membership group, the Baker-McFadden Legacy Circle.

“Naming the West Des Moines Historical Society in your estate plans is a simple way to preserve our rich history for future generations. We have a responsibility to preserve the past and share the stories that shaped the community we are today.” – Vicki Baker Former Board Member and Founder

Join the West Des Moines Historical Society Baker-McFadden Legacy Circle!

By remembering the West Des Moines Historical Society in your will or other type of estate plan, you create a lasting legacy that helps us advance our mission in service to preserving and sharing our rich history. Please share information about your gift below or learn more by calling us at 515.225.1286 or email at

For more information, please contact:

Gale Brubaker, Executive Director
West Des Moines Historical Society
P.O. Box 65563
West Des Moines, IA 50265

Founded in 1970, the West Des Moines Historical Society (WDMHS) is a 501(c)(3) volunteer-based organization dedicated to community enrichment through education, preservation, and celebration of the history and the heritage of West Des Moines.