Milan Illinois

Although the Quad Cities region today includes a city named Milan, there was an earlier town of the same name in a different location. The first Milan was platted in 1837 into 30 blocks and adjoined the village of Hampton, which was platted a year later. This Milan included the area once known as Well's Ferry; Block #1 was the

By | 2016-10-21T15:29:30+00:00 May 2nd, 2009|Ghost Towns|0 Comments

McNeal’s Landing Illinois

Henry McNeal, courtesy of Rock Island County Historical Society Canadian Henry McNeal and Kentuckian Joel Thomspon arrived in the winter of 1827-1828. They settled on land next to the Mississippi River in an area that was technically off-limits at that time, which technically made them squatters. McNeal built a cabin where the Village of Hampton's Soldier’s Memorial

By | 2016-10-21T15:29:30+00:00 April 19th, 2009|Ghost Towns|0 Comments

Well’s Ferry Illinois

Lucius Wells In 1827, Lucius Wells built a cabin about a mile north of where Henry McNeal would settle in the following year. Wells  began ferry service to Iowa in 1829; his horse-powered boat had room for two teams of horses and two wagons. Lucius also built a sawmill a couple of years later. The

By | 2016-10-21T15:29:30+00:00 April 19th, 2009|Ghost Towns|0 Comments


Population (2010) 1,863 NOTE: See the Quad Cities overview for regional information on tourism centers, festivals, and getting around. History Henry McNeal, courtesy of Rock Island County Historical Society Henry McNeal left his home in Canada at a very young age and went west. He worked on the Great

By | 2018-05-17T16:29:05+00:00 April 16th, 2009|Illinois|0 Comments

Quad Cities Overview

Introduction View from Arsenal Island clock tower Welcome to the Quad Cities, where the Mississippi River flows from east to west—to get from Iowa to Illinois you have to go south! The Quad Cities consist of the Iowa cities of Davenport and Bettendorf and the Illinois cities of Rock

By | 2018-05-17T18:49:41+00:00 April 10th, 2009|Quad Cities Regional Overview|0 Comments

Election Day Special

In honor of Election Day, I offer three short stories of nineteenth century political games in Mississippi River towns. As new areas were settled, communities fought contentious political battles over the location of the county seat, like these places did. Enjoy! Rock Island County (Illinois) In 1833, Hampton and rival Farnhamsburg (now Rock Island) competed

By | 2016-10-21T15:29:33+00:00 November 4th, 2008|Historical shorts|2 Comments

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