City of Dubuque News Releases

Eagle Point Park Listed in National Register of Historic Places

David Johnson


DUBUQUE, Iowa – Eagle Point Park, 2601 Shiras Ave., has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) effective November 27, 2017. Eagle Point Park is now one of 18 National Register Districts located in the city of Dubuque, which has an additional 47 properties individually listed in the register.    

The NRHP is the nation's official list of cultural resources worthy of preservation. Authorized under the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Register is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect historic and archeological resources. Properties listed in the register include districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects that are significant in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering, and culture. The National Register is administered by the National Park Service, which is part of the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Listing in the National Register contributes to preserving historic properties in several ways. Listing bestows benefits such as recognition that a property is of significance to the nation, the state, or the community. It helps facilitate the planning and implementation of federal or federally assisted projects. Listing also extends eligibility for federal and state tax benefits and grants.   

“The National Register of Historic Places designation recognizes the unrivaled historic, architectural, and cultural significance of Eagle Point Park to the city of Dubuque and state of Iowa,” said City of Dubuque Leisure Services Manager Marie Ware.  “The park’s unique features and setting are something Dubuque residents treasure and visitors come back for. We are fortunate to have such an amazing park in our community and are grateful for the recognition bestowed by the National Park Service.” 

The idea for Eagle Point Park was conceived by city leaders in 1907 when Charles M. Robinson, a noted eastern park specialist, visited Dubuque. After touring scenic locations in the city, Robinson commented, “I have never seen a place where the Almighty has done more and mankind less, than Dubuque.” In June of 1908, 100 acres were deeded to the city and became Eagle Point Park. Since the original purchase, 17 parcels have been purchased or donated, which brought the park to its present size of 164 acres. Streetcar traffic began to serve the park in 1912 and shortly after the Riverfront Pavilion and Shiras Memorial Pavilion were constructed along the riverfront promenade.

The park took on a new look in the 1930s when the City received a $200,000 Works Progress Administration grant and hired noted landscape architect Alfred Caldwell. His love of Prairie School architecture is very recognizable in the park buildings and gardens. Caldwell’s exceptional use of native construction materials, craftsmanship, and unique designs make the park one of the most beautiful in the Midwest.

After World War II, the open-air pavilions, a band shell, and other park amenities were added to Eagle Point Park. Since 1990, updated play structures, accessible restrooms, and landscape features were added.

More information on the National Register of Historic Places can be found at: The following is a link to view and download the Eagle Point Park Historic District National Register of Historic Places nomination:   

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