More than twenty towns sprang up along the Mississippi River in the first seven years after the end of the Black Hawk War; many disappeared as quickly as they were planned. In one case, a group of investors platted Rock Island City near the site of Saukenuk, purchasing six hundred acres from George Davenport for the city. Founders had big plans for the town and solicited investors from around the U.S., including from the well-known attorney and U.S. Senator, Daniel Webster. The financial panic of 1837 killed the town’s prospects and the investors lost their money, including Webster, who lost $60,000. The town that was supposed to be Rock Island City is now part of the city of Rock Island.

© Dean Klinkenberg, 2009