Ames History Museum - Iowa's Ethnic Heritage

Primary tabs

Age Group:

Please note you are looking at an event that has already happened.

Program Description

Program Details


Topic — Iowa's Ethnic Heritage, or "Who Do You Think We Are?"

Speaker — John Liepa, Prof. Emeritus/History & Political Science, Des Moines Area Community College

Enjoy the unfolding and changing adventure of Iowa’s immigration history. Beginning with the Ioway, one of 17 distinctive indigenous tribal groups, we’ll trace chronologically who we are as Iowans. 

From Spanish explorers and French trappers, traders and priests; to the dominant English, Germans and Irish; to Scandinavians, Dutch and Czechs, we’ll explore why these groups chose to leave their homelands and how they eventually ended up in Iowa. African-Americans, Eastern Europeans and Hispanics have different stories to share along with other “newer” Iowans. 

This lecture is personal and interactive, and we’ll work together to discover who we are and who we are becoming as Iowans.

Presented in partnership with Ames Public Library and Ames History Museum. Program funded by Humanities Iowa, a private, non-profit state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the State Historical Society of Iowa.


Ames Public Library connects you to the world of ideas through diverse and inclusive resources and programs. We welcome proposals via our website for programs at and exhibits at