Black Heritage Survey

The Black Heritage Survey is a deep dive into Dubuque’s Black heritage which allows the history of Black Dubuquers to be braided into the history of all Dubuquers.

Black Dubuquers were among the City's first pioneers in the 1830s. Dubuque's Black population was the highest in the region that would become Iowa. Our Black population levels rose and fell over the next 150 years. Their history, and the findings of this study, are recorded in the Finding Dubuque Atlas.

The City was awarded a $30,000 Historic Resource Development Program Grant from the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs to conduct the Black Heritage Survey. Working under the standards of the National Park Service, the project will result in a Multiple Property Document uncovering the rich history across time and space in Dubuque, helping us better understand and interpret our built environment.

Project Team

City of Dubuque

  • Planning Services
  • Historic Preservation Commission
  • GIS Office
  • Equity & Human Rights
  • Office of Shared Prosperity
  • Multicultural Family Center

Consultant Team

  • Wapsi Valley Archaeology
  • Roots to Branches Genealogy
  • Pearson Consulting

Educational Institutions

  • Loras College
  • University of Dubuque

Volunteers / Community Historians

  • John Pregler
  • R.R.S. Stewart
  • Brian Hallstoos
  • Catherine Koetz

Heritage Works


Project Coordinator: Chris Happ Olson, Assistant Planner
563-589-4387 |