The Historic Pella Trust, established in 1994, is a non-profit preservation group who helps to preserve Pella’s architectural resources so that future generations will continue to be enriched by the historic legacy of Pella’s Dutch heritage and culture. We serve in a counseling and advisory capacity regarding historically correct architecture and disseminate information regarding restoration and reconstruction of facilities.

Our Mission Statement is:

  To Protect and Promote Buildings, Landscapes, and Sites

Important to the Heritage of Pella, Iowa.

Protect & Promote our Heritage

Our office is located in the oldest building in Pella, Iowa, The Thomas Tuttle Cabin Build in 1843.  We do provide tours of this historic landmark.

The Trust interacts to rescue historically significant property in danger of demolition. Restoration of these properties and protection covenants are arranged by our organization.  We take an active approach towards historic preservation advocacy working with local, state and national government agencies to document and preserve.

Members receive our newsletter “Preserve Pella”.  Our annual meeting is in November, by tradition we honor several Pella homeowners with a  Historic Landmark plaque and award during this meeting.

Historic Pella Trust celebrates their 25th Anniversary October 2019

Contact Information

Historic Pella Trust, Inc.

Phone :641-780-9818

Email: office@historicpellatrust.org

Tuttle Log House address: 608 Lincoln Street

Mailing address: PO Box 1, Pella, Iowa 50219

Planning a visit? Please Email Historic Pella Trust  

New: Donate Online!

In the News and Events

Tuttle Learning Walk

Phase one of the Tuttle Learning Walk is in progress! The walk has been divided into 3 phases; construction, signage, and landscaping.

Your financial Support is needed to finish the Tuttle Learning Walkway!

We are excited to introduce the Tuttle Learning Walkway in partnership with the City of Pella!

Historic Pella Trust has partnered with the City of Pella to build an educational walkway between Tuttle Cabin and Sunken Garden Park. This project  creates an entertaining way for our children, adults and visitors to learn about Pella’s history and heritage through signage and plantings. It will provide a lasting tribute to the devoutness; courage and industriousness of our Dutch ancestors. We anticipate that it will become a high-interest tourist attraction! 

Visitors will learn about the 1843 homestead of Thomas and Nancy Tuttle and the role Rev. Moses J. Post had in helping the Dutch to acquire local the homesteads in 1847. They will gain insight on what motivated the Dutch to leave the Netherlands under the leadership of H. P. Scholte and why that still has an impact on our present-day culture.   As the walkway nears Sunken Garden Park, the signage will share about the cooling pond for Pella’s first electric plant and  the location for the first tulip festival. The signs will include QR codes to scan for more history and photos. The City of Pella parks department will maintain the walk that will feature a variety of heritage perennials wildflowers, native grasses and bushes along with several limestone outcroppings representing the literal foundations of our town.

  Historic Pella Trust has agreed to provide 100% of the cost of Tuttle Learning Walk through local fundraising. We are close to our last quarter of the goal of raising $195,000. We need your help to achieve this vision.

Historic Pella Trust has committed to raise 100% of the funds needed for the project so that no tax dollars will be involved. 

https://historicpellatrust.org/learning-walkway/

Historic Pella Trust receives $15,000 Grant from Pella Corp. Rolscreen Foundation to help fund Tuttle Learning Walk

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20 hours ago

Historic Pella Trust

Stu Kuyper, age 58, passed away forty years ago, on July 5, 1980. As a community Pella still reels from his loss.

The Historic Pella Trust traditionally focuses on Pella’s buildings and sites, but today we want to honor one of the individuals who was instrumental both in preserving Pella’s heritage and helping to forge the community into what it is today.

Stu was an extremely gifted man, who came from an extraordinary family. His talents knew no bounds: he was a hugely successful businessman, inventor, benefactor and philanthropist, sportsman, musician, artist, husband and father. He was also a preservationist laser-focused on preserving Pella’s Dutch heritage and promoting it as widely as possible.

Stu was born on October 14, 1921 to Pete and Lucille Kuyper and was welcomed by his older sister Joan. Before Stu was four years old, Pete and Lucille purchased a fledgling Des Moines company named Rolscreen and moved it to Pella. Today, Rolscreen is known as Pella Corp. and has grown into a billion-dollar a year company known around the country for manufacturing world-class windows and doors.

Stu attended Pella Community schools and then went on to receive an engineering degree from Iowa State University in 1943. While attending college Stu was a member of the ROTC (Reserve Officers’ Training Corps) and following graduation served three years in the armed forces, stationed at Fort Belvoir, VA.

Following his military service Stu returned to Pella and worked under his father at Rolscreen. A decade earlier, as a teenager, Stu had begun working in the factory. His first job was unloading incoming raw lumber from railroad boxcars; a hot, back-breaking job. Stu eventually became Vice-President of Manufacturing for the company, accumulating many patents for his creations along the way - not the least of which was one for folding doors - a one-time staple of the business.

In 1976 Stu became President of Pella Corp., a position he held until his death four years later. The family business grew to employ thousands of people in and around Pella. The company eventually expanded to include facilities in multiple states. Stu was also founding director of Pella B.V., a Rolscreen factory in Panningen, Holland.

The first two generations of the Kuyper family: Pete, Joan and Stu, were deeply involved in both the growth and preservation of the community of Pella. Stu was perhaps the most involved in promoting and preserving Pella’s heritage. He was a creative, hands-on type of person. He personally designed many of the floats used in Tulip Time parades.

He was instrumental in introducing and helping fund the concept of Dutch fronts for downtown business buildings. He had a vision that entailed turning part of downtown Franklin Street into a canal. His modified vision later became a reality when the Molengracht was constructed in the 1990s. The existence of Pella's railroad Depot is another landmark that exists thanks to Stu.

When Casey’s came to Pella, Stu personally designed the Dutch front for their building; it was the first Casey’s store not to have a corporate-branded exterior. Stu and his wife, Eunice, along with Bob and Doretha Klein, rescued a Pella landmark building by renovating it and opening the nationally-recognized Strawtown Restaurant and Inn on West Washington Street. For years Eunice personally oversaw the restaurant. Later, when Casey’s began selling pizza, it was based on Eunice’s recipe suggestions.

One of the largest local landmarks that owes its existence to Stu and his sister, Joan, is the Pella Community Center - constructed as Pella’s first high school. In the late 1970s the building was slated for demolition. The man who was hired to remove it (ironically named Wrecker Hall) came to Stu and said that the building was too good to be demolished.

Stu and Joan then agreed to donate the funds to have the building renovated, becoming the Pella Community Center. The building’s auditorium still bears Joan’s name as a tribute to the contributions she and the Kuyper family have made to the community.

Stu was extensively involved in business, civic, religious and government affairs. He was a member of the Board of Governors for Iowa State University, was a consistory member of the 2nd Reformed Church in Pella, served as president of the Iowa Manufacturers Association, chairman of the Marion County Republicans, Chairman of the Red Rock Lake Association, member of the founding board of the Pella Golf and Country Club, and a director of both the Central National Bank and Iowa Bancshares Corporation in Des Moines. He served on the Pella Community Development committee and the Chamber of Commerce. He was a member of the Iowa College Foundation Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of Central College’s fundraising drive “Bridge To Tomorrow”.

In his spare time Stu was an avid traveler, boater, golfer and shooter. As is abundantly apparent, Stu packed several lifetime’s worth of achievement into his brief 58 years. There have been few Pella citizens that have contributed so much to both the community and to preserving and promoting Pella’s heritage.

With the passing of Stu, Pella’s heritage lost a valuable patron, the likes of which has yet to be seen. One can only wonder what Pella would be like if Stu had been granted a few more decades to further see his dreams of Pella’s preservation completed.

Next time you think of the 4th of July, recall what Pella lost on the 5th of July. -BB

P.S. All photos of Stu courtesy of Eunice Kuyper Folkerts - who remains a wonderful supporter of Pella's heritage and (was a longtime board member of) the Historic Pella Trust! <3
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2 days ago

Historic Pella Trust
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Historic Pella Trust published this Walking Tour Booklet of Historic Places in 2012 and reprinted in 2015. It is distributed around Pella with an honor system of payment in the back of the booklet holder. We ask $1 to cover the cost of printing. The cost of reprinting will run around $2 plus edit fees. Would some of you be willing to sponsor the next reprint that will run around $2500? We are on our last few booklets, The book provides a great social distant activity along with information about historic places you have always wondered about! These homes and buildings contribute so much to the character of our community, by sharing through the booklet it will help to build an appreciation for architecture that is not replaceable. Your contribution towards reprinting would be much appreciated, Thanks! ... See MoreSee Less

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Historic Pella Trust will be downtown for Thursday nights in Pella on July 2nd, next week!Pregaming Thursdays in Pella with this ‘Ag in the City’ throwback. Do you know these gents?
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Here’s the lineup for July:
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July 2 - Capes & Tiaras 👑
•hosted by @FamiliesFirstPella and sponsored by @community1stcu
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July 9 - Move it Move it 🏃🏽‍♀️🏃‍♂️
•sponsored by @PellaHomeRealty
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July 16 - #WeBuiltThis 🔨🥽
•sponsored by Precision Inc.
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July 23 - Life in the Fast Lane 🏎 🏁 🏁
•sponsored by @pellamotors
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July 30 - Ag in the City 🚜 •hosted by #MarionCountyFarmBureau and sponsored by @MarionCountyBank
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#pellaiowa #lovewhereyoulive #thursdaysinpella
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Many of you will recognize the De Haan home located on University Street south of Central College. Built in 1926 (and seen here in 1936) it has an interesting look with its hipped roof and craftsman-influenced architecture. Below it is a photo of the original De Haan home, built in 1849 by Jacob De Haan, the same year he and his family immigrated from Holland. The home(s) and surrounding land have been in the De Haan family ever since. -BB ... See MoreSee Less

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2 months ago

Historic Pella Trust

Brickwork on the Tuttle Learning Walk is complete; They are working on the finishing touches with sand this afternoon. Thank you to everyone who has contributed towards the project. It is beautiful! ... See MoreSee Less

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