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THE AUGUS, SATURDAY, APRIL 1902.
W EM RJDVDQW
OMR hundred -I nf tluilianil
I of years agu, whi-n Nature
I gave water as . h mighty
J I tool into the hands of the
Sun and Gravity and com
missioned them to draw
it back and forth and fash
ion the upper Mississippi
valley for the abode of
man. that worthy dame remained by
to oversee the work that it might be
)erfectly done. In the fullness of
time the task was completed and the
great river flowed placidly between
its fringing hills toward
Then, with her deft hand
shaped the site for a erfeet city
upon its eastern bank. There man
placed Kock Island.
The citv of Kock Island is located
at a point unexcelled both for beauty
and natural advantages. The blnTs
that, here wall in the stream from
whoic brightest .island the city taken
its name are imiMing' without being
barren, based with fertile lowlands
and backed by productive prairies.
All that is needful for the support of
civilized man is here in abundance.
Topographically the city comprises
four square miles, or over "DO city
blocks of land, nearly all level and un
f derlaid at no great distance from
the surface with Hamilton limestone,
furnishing a base for the heaviest
foundations, and not a lot but may
le utilized for either factories, busi
ness houses or residences. As a com
munity of human beings, Kock Island'
occupies a Msition in keeping with
its natural advantages. It has a
population of 2.j.(MK) within its cor
porate limits and the adjacent sub
urbs and taken with Moline and Dav
enport, forms a community of nearly
100,000 soids, not exceeded in com
mercial importance by any other
community of equal size in America.
Natural and Other Advantages.
Connected by natural waterways
with the gulf of Mexico and all the
territory washed by the Mississippi
and its navigable tributaries, Kock
Island is also on the lines of three
great railway systems and three
short feeder giving transportation
for both freight and passengers in
nil directions at all times. The tri
cities form the most important cross
ing place, on the Mississippi bet wee u
St. l.ouis and St. Paul and the amount
of business here passingbackand forth
over the stream is exceeded at these
two places only. The three cities are
also at. the western terminus of the
Hennepin canal, which, when com
pleted, will connect them by water
.with the great lakes, offering a
cheap outlet for heavy produce- and
furnishing another means of connec
tion with the immense industries of
No city in the state, outside of
Chicago, is so well advertised as
Kock Island. On the island opposite
its eastern portion is located the
most imiortarit manufacturing arse
nal in the United States from which
munitions and utensils of war are
pent out to all parts of the nation
ami to all territory occupied by the
army. The first railroad to reach
the Mississippi rier from the east is
the. one bearing the city's name and
- ? V. !'"'
T.". "r . Z-V
whifh has now grown into .one of the
most extensive systems in a land of
great failroads. The Kock Island road
now. carrier the-name of "theoity into
Mexico and in a short time is ex
pected to have a branch to the Pa
cific coast. This favored city is vride-
ly known through the sale of its
manufactured products, which are
distributed far and wide. It is alst
the home of the Modern Woodmen.
the greatest fraternal organization
in the world, one which covers 151
. The many natural and artificial at
tractions of the city make it a fav
orite place for holding:- conventions
and an objective point for numerous
excursions from surrounding1 cities
within "a few hours ride by rail.
Lastly Kock Island is the seat of gov
ernment of the county of the same
name and one which ranks among
the first in population and commer
cial importance in the state. The ail
vantages above enumerated, together
with others of lesser importance,
coupled with energetic ami jersist
ent enterprise on the part of the
eople who form its population, have
made Kock island what we find it
Its Famed Name.
From an island in the Mississippi
Uock Island received its name and to
that island it. also owes its location.
if not its very . existence. The building-
of Fort Armstrong on" the west
point of the island, which was done
in IMi'i, when there was no settle
ment within many miles, naturally
led to the establishing" of a trading
post, there for the transaction of busi
ness with the Indians and such white
settlers as had taken up their abode
in the interior. This trading" post
was established by Col. fieorge Dav
enport near the fort, on the island.
As trade grew, the necessitv of ferry -
VIEW IX SPENCER SQUARE.
ing back and forth across the slough
to the post became something of an
obstacle and in 1S2t" the log cabin,
afterwards known as the "house of
John Harrell," was built by Col. Dav
enport and Kussell Farnham, who had
formed a partnership. It was locat
ed upon what is now the Cable pro
perty near the foot of Twenty-ninth
During the next few yenrs a num
ber of settlers located within a short
distance upanddown the rier, doing
their trading- at the post and depend
ing upon the soldiers at the fort for
protection in the Indian troubles that
were then beginning. Settlement was
retarded to some extent during 1831
and by the Black Hawk war and
the white population for miles
around flocked to the fort as a place of
refiige. When the tribes of l'.lack Hawk
were finally driven away a rapid in-
j O city is so complete that it can
II not be improved pon. Such n
state would be most, deplorable, for it
would mean death to all municipal
pride. Man is not long content to
devote his energies to maintaining n
fairs of any description in a given
condition. There must be change and
that for what he deems the lcttef or
his interest wanes at once. Kock Is
land still has its needs both as re
gards the relations of its citizens
with each other "and with the outside
world. On both heads volumes might
be written, but only a general refer
ence to them will be in order here.
Seaking generally, Kock Island
needs, first of nil. unity among all
classes of citizens with the city's wel
fare and prestige as the central ob
ject. A unity sustained not for the
purpose of obtaining from the out
side world through trickery. and mis
representation that which is not due
and deserved, but for the purpose of
setting forth facts and conditions as
they exist in order that the city's
advanages may le known and valued
at their true worth. Such an effort
need not entail personal sacrifice fur
ther, jerhnps. than a few words or a
few moments of time now and then.
It need not even be entirely unselfish
-"-I - - - - - -. . - ir. . ". - -
lliix if whites began and in l.-iXJ the
county 4if Uock Island was laid out
and a county "wernment organized
with the house of John I'.arrell as the
count v seat. The postotTice. which
had been established on the island in
1SU'.". was succeeded by one at the
1 Jarre 11 house on the mainland in
ls:M. .Joseph (Ymvay being1 the lirst
postmaster. The new office was
name I Farnhamsbnrg.
At this time the desirability of lo
cating the town that was then seen
to be forming' farther west where
there would be more room for growth
was recognized, so in 1S:!." the county
commissioners passed a resolution
ordering that "Charles 15. Dennett be
ordered to survey the town of Stepl-
enson. in Kock Island county, as soon
as practicable." The plat of the new
town was recorded duly 11). 18:!."i. It
comprised about 02 acres of land and
was divided into blocks besides the
one set aside for and still used as a
court house square. In November
of the same year the seat of justice
was removed from Farnhamshiirg to
Stephenson and the former place in
a very short t ime ' 'jecame of minor
Town Brought Into Kxistcnce.
The town of Kock Island vVas
brought into existence by an act of
the legislature in March, 1H41. which
did away with "the town of Stephen
son and united it with Farnhams
burg under the present name and
with boundaries, including besides
the old town the additions made by
Thompson & Wells, Spencer A- Case
in its personal motive, for the inter
ests of the individual citizen are com
mon with those of the city as a
A body of people cannot work con
sistently for a given end unless they
ure conscientious in what they arc
about. Therefore, in order to brb.g
about helpfnf cooperation it is neces
sary that citizens of a town generally
realize to the fullest extent the ad
vantages by which they are surround
ed. Through long association it may
be that the people of Kock Island us
a whole have overlooked or have lost
sight of points bearing- on this head
that ought to be always borne in
m.n:l tor the oeneni oi tnose wno may
be induced to contribute in any way
to the material prosperity of the city.
Among these may 1h mentioned:
1. Location central. Most import
ant urban district l)etween Chicago
and Omaha, and St. Louis and St.
2. Shipping facilities unexcelled.
On main line of three great railway
s stems and terminus of three feed
3. Koom for growth. Desirable
sites for business enterprises and
4. Fuel cheap. Extensive coal j
' t-!- -v r -t - ..." '
-t,.. . -v ' J -1 '
ROCK ISLAND'S RESERVIOR SYSTEM.
and .tones. Gnrnsey $: Iteardsley.
'Hie present limits of the city have
leen reached through a series of ad
ditions. The town government was
conducted under a boar J at nine
trustees fill 1S-IH, when the city char
ter was granted under which the gov
ernment is carried on "at the present
Il' iijamin F. Rarrett was the first
mayor; .lames (I. Uolnier, David 15.
Kice, .John M. Waugh, Philip Zahn.
James K. Hadsell and Charles R.
Kriox. aldermen from the three
wards; Kobert Wilkinson, dork;
James ('. ISolmer, treasurer; William
T. Norris. marshal, and Keynolds &
Itean; attorneys. Following are the
mayors that have served during the
successive terms with the dates of
Kenjamin F. I.arrett
Joshua II. Hatch
P. A. Whitaker
Benjamin F. Barrett
Patrick (iregg ....
Thomas J. Buford .
Calvin Truesdale ..
Bailey Davenport .
Calvin Truesdale . .
B. II. Kimball
Thomas M unlock .
James M. Buford .
Porter Skinner ...
Thomas .M unlock .
Bailey Davenport .
Thomas Halt ......
Bailey Davenort .,
William P. Butler ,
Klisha P. Keynolds
James 'A. Mott
Thomas Murdock .
V. M. Blanding 1SS7.
William McConochie 1SS!.
T. J. Med ill. Jr 10.1.
B. F. Knox 1S.j.
T. J. Med ill. Jr 1S07.
William McConochie Isii'J.
B. F. Knox l'.iOl.
The city offices for some time prior
to ISliO occupied the upper floor of
the Bailey & Boyle building, which
stood on what is the present site of
the Mitchell? Sr I.ynde block. About
lKtiO they were removed to a building
belonging to the late Ben Harper,
where Harper's theatre was later
constructed, on the northwest cor
ner of Second avenue and Sixteenth
street. . After alwmt ten years the
seat of city government found a place
in the then newly constructed Star
block, at Second avenue and Nine
teenth street. Here it remained till
the removal to the present quarters
in the Armory at the corner of Six
teenth street and Third avenue. The
NEEDS AND ADVANTAGES
fields with rail connection within 25
5. lias river advantages. On navig
able stream with power awaiting de
velopment. 6. Contiguous to other cities. Part
of urban community of lOO.ono in
habitants. 7. Extensively advertised. Name
Kock Island carried over all the
world by a great railroad, a famous
nrsenal and a magnificent bridge.
8. Local conditions ideal. Health
ful, beautifully situated and well im
proved. Having become fully awake to the
fact that this is a 'city to le proud of
the people should take up the work
now of bringing about added muni
cipal improvements lhat are needed
from time to time and in reaching
out for new means of development
and-growth. Systematic advertising
of a city is just as much in accord
with the spirit of the age as that
done by commercial firms, and the re
sults of the one are not less certain
than those of the other. Other cities
are making a practice of it and any
city that wishes to hold its own must
do likewise or be relegated in time to
the status of a village. With live
towns bidding against each other for
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present elective atii appointive it
Mayor II. F. Knox.
City Clerk H. C. Schaffer.
City Attorney John K. Scott.
City Treasurer--W. II. (Jest.
Police Magistral C. A. Johnson.
ChUf of Police James Darnell.
Chief of Fire I -pa rt men t Charles
Health Commissioner Dr. Joseph
.Superintendent of Waterworks -Plumb
Plumbing Inspector Frank Yer
bury. Superintendent of St reets -William
Oxerseer of the Poor -J. H. bid
ders. City Weigh mast er W. A. Norris.
Bridge Toll CollectorJohn Wil
Park Commissioners Kichard
Crninptoti. Willianf Sehnert.
Scavenger .la mes Burr is.
The aldermen composing1 the in
coming council are: First wanl
Frank Westbay. Frank W. Bloehling
er; Second ward I.otiis V. Kckhart.
Jr.. Charles A. Naab: Third ward
William Ilause. Otto II. Birkel;
Fourth ward Charles K. "Willis,
(leorge W. McCaskrin: Fifth ward
Ceorge White. William Trefz; Sixth
ward William Kennedy. Fred D.
('all; Seventh ward A. J. Anderson.
A. F. Soderstrom.
The City's Growth.
The growth of the city of Kock Is-
the location of productive industries
men who are looking for a place to
establish manufacturing establish
ments will not take the trouble, how
ever alluring' otherwise a place may
be, to break into if through. a hedge
of skepticism and prejudice and to
run the gauntlet of greedy real estate
agents ami property holders in a
quest I'wr a suitable site. If they en
counter such si spirit as the above
they will not stop long enough to
fairly investigate the merits of a
city, but will go on ami settle in some
place perhaps really less suitable but
one in which they are given a con
sistent, welcome. Of course it is not
necessary in encouraging the location
of outside enterprises to take up with
any concern that -happens to come
along and thus become the prey of
unscrupulous promoters. Business
judgment should be exercised in this
as in every thing else pertaining to
the management of the affairs of a
city. Neither will it generally be
found necessary to raise a large fund
as bait- for new- business enterprises,
for the more reliable sort, of estab
lishments are not usually so particu
lar about this sort of encouragement
as tney are noout permanent advan
; US' : v- ';.. -. A- . - - -"- " r ? iw . t i-t-lni ..:- X""--J.
land has been uniformly steady and
persistent. The only impetus it ever
received that took on the proportions
of a boom was felt immediately after
the completion of the Chicago &
Kock Island railroad in 1S54. Prop
erty doubled in value in a short time
and there was a rush of speculation
followed by substantial gains in
population and commerce. Kock Is
land changed from an overgrown vil
lage to a city within a couple of
years and since that time there has
been no period during which a health
ful rate of development has not been
maintained. Kock Island may be
said to have always been a conser
vative commonwealth, but it has been
built upon enduring lines, never ex
periencing a retrograde movement.
Kxperience has shown that cities
on the west banks of the tipper Mis
sissippi have an advantage over those
set opposite or nearly opposite on
the easl banks, in that they catch
and distribute 'trade from a larger
area in the natural movements of
produce toward the east and of
manufactured articles toward the
west. In this Kock Island is handi
capped by Davenport, but what the
former loses in location with refer
ence to the river it gains in its ad
vantages as a manufacturing town.
As soon as rail connect io'n with the
east was established its manufactur
ing -interests began to assume im
portance. Like many other cities 011
the upper river the lumber mills be
came the most extensive of its manu
facturing establishments and con
tributed largely to its upbuilding.
The Weyerhaeuser tV- Denkinauu saw
mill was started in is.j; 011 small
capital and. as the years passed,
grew in size and output till now the
interests which were responsible for
VIEW IN SI'ENCEK SQUAIiE
its beginning are among the most ex
tensive in the lumler business of the
northwest. The Kock Island Lumber
company grew from modest begin
nings made about the same time as
the Weyerhaeuser S' Denkmanii mill
was first built and for many years
did an extensive business. Of late
the rough lumber interests in Ihis
vicinity have given way to finishing
mills to a. great extent ami other
changes are bound to be made in the
course of a very few years.
The single- manufacturing concern
that has done more than any other
for the city is the Kock Island
Plow works. This concern was es
tablished in ls."."i by B. D. Buford. who
founded the firm of B. 1. Buford A
Co. In ISTt the natural growth made
a reorganizat ion ' necessary and the
present corporation was formed. The
Kock Island once had a Citizens"
Improvement association and the
good that organization accomplished
in the three short years of its exist
ence is still fresh in the minds of the
majority of the business men of mid
dle age. Its original mission was en
tirely fulfilled and it went out of ex
istence only because the work it hail
set out to do had been accomplished
But it had another mission, for it
demonstrated that an organization in
Kock Island for a patriotic purpose i
practicable an 1 may be made to ac
complish any reasonable undertak
ing. Thus.it has left its example as
wi inspiit ion to organized effort in
the future. The Kock Island Club
and the Merchants" association have
done much, but. there is more to be
With local patriotism strong among
all classes of citizens; with the muni
cipal government well administered:
with the city's latch string out to the
world, and a reception committee
awaiting strangers at the floor, the
story of Kock Island's. future cannot
be different from that of its past
with the exception that the momen
tum of its progress must increase
with each succeeding year.
Kock Island Stove company is one of
the substantial industries of the
city, having been in operation nearly
.'! years, and the glass factory, which
under trust manipulation was taken
away over ten years ago, was for a
number of years the source of exten
sive activities. (If course there are
numerous smaller establishments and
those of more recent origin, such as
breweries, buggy, shoe shop, soda
water, lumber factories and others
that space forbids mentioning.
In 1S70 Kock Island was a healthv
CITY CI.KKK SCMAFFKK.
young western city of less than 10.000
inhabitants with a promising future
but with very few of the tcrmaneiit
improvements that would now be
deemed essential to a place of its im
port a nee. There was a limited num
ber of buildings of any pretense, mi
improxed streets, few brick sidewalks
and the streets at night were imper
fectly illuminated with oil lamps.
There were no sewers and even a
waterworks system was a thing of
the future. People depended mainly
for their water supply upon wells or
cisterns and a number of drays were
kept busy at all times of the year
peddling river water. For fire pro
tection there were a number of large
cisterns at various places about the
city and in dry seasons they had to
be tilled by hauling from the river or
by the use of tire engines and hose.
But better things were in .-tore for
the young city.
Advantages Summed Up.
There are many things that enter
into the makeup of a modern city t
be found in Kock I .-la ml t o which space
forbids eieiia reference, and t herea re
others that can only be mentioned in
passing. There is a park system, as
yet only partially deicloped. that will
in the cotir.-e of time add more to the
beauty and desirability of Kock Is
land as a place of residence lhan the
great majority of people realize.
There are the hotels of (lie city,
which have done, and which will con
tinue to do iniieo to Icaie a favor
able impression in the minds of visi
tors and transients. St. Anthony's
hospital, comltiele I by the Franciscan
sisters, cares annually for hundreds
of the ill and afflicted, i l.v of whom
go abroad to repeat the praises of
such an institution for the treatment
of suffering- mankind. There are
beautiful and subst ant ia I buildings,
such as the county court house.
Woodmen head office, with a library
in course of construction, handsome
and well appointed school houses and
churches, an np-t.-date 'theatre, new
ami modern railway stations, and
many others. There is as line a sys
tem of rapid transit as can be found
anywhere. There is Black Hawk's fa
mous Watch Toner just beyond the
southern limits of the city, which is
seen and admired by hundreds of
strangers annually. There is Rock
Island arsenal, always instructive and
attractive." There are the large de
partment si ores which are known far
and wide as emporiums of trade.
There are plenty of thriving-, indus
tries and room for more. There are
men who stamp high and w ield an in
fluence in the various professions
that aid, improve and uplift human-
Continued on Page Thirteen.