Scott Co, Iowa - IAGenWeb Project
I have typed "Davenport Past and Present "as written. The only thing we have added is a surname Index divided by Chapter at the end of this book. Cathy Labath and I have set up this book by chapters. There will be a link on each chapter to that chapter when it is completed and uploaded. Where there are pictures in the book - we have made a note. The pictures will be located in the Pictures/Document section of the Scott County Site. Following is the title page, preface and contents page. We hope you enjoy reading the book. We hope by our efforts Davenport Past and Present has helped you in some way.
Cathy Labath and Debbie Gerischer
INCLUDING THE EARLY HISTORY
PERSONAL AND ANECOOFAL REMINISCENCES OF DAVENPORT;
WITH BIOGRAPHIES, LIKENESSES OF ITS PROMINENT MEN;
COMPENDIOUS ARTICLES UPON THE PHYSICAL, INDUSTRIAL, SOCIAL AND POLITICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THE CITY;
FULL STATISTICS OF EVERY DEPARTMENT OF NOTE OR INTEREST, AC.
FRANC B. WILKIE
HOUSE OF LUSE, LANE CO. , 1858
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1858,
by FRANC B. WILKIE
In the Clerk's office of the U. S. District Court of Iowa.
As Prefaces are in style, it is well that one should be written for the present work, although the author may not have anything particular to say, but which might as well as not be said in the body of the work. However, a few words may not be inappropriate.
The present work has been prepared under no ordinary difficulties - the data being in the first part of the work, such as were afforded by the memories of "old settlers," no two of which ever agreed exactly in relating the same circumstance. Often would the author get a glimpse of a promising fact or anecdote, and after diligently hunting it through the mazes of a half dozen memories, would discover it to be a jack o'latern; or after finding it, having it corroborated by the "mouths of two or three witnesses," and having it printed, he would be most positively assured by some one that the thing in question was either entirely wrong, or a fable. However severe and disheartening the task has been, the author flatters himself that in almost every statement truth has been arrived at as near as is possible - for he has been careful in every case to get all the different versions, and to adopt the one having a majority in its favor.
There have been other difficulties no less arduous, and much more disagreeable. In a work of this kind few are without an opinion as to what the book should contain, while not a few others are of course better judges of, and much more able (in their own opinion,) to write a book than the author. In looking over the printed sheets, exceptions would be taken to this or that - one wished no anecdotes, another nothing else - a third wished simple statistics - a fourth wished it to build up this particular interest or depress that, or make it a prose song of adulation to some reining Jupiter in the financial Olympus of Davenport. Others have ventured so far as to threaten to use their influence to suppress the work if it were not gotten up after a particular manner. Appreciating the absurdity, as well as despising such coercive measures in book making, the author aimed only to write a book for the majority, and corresponding with its title, trusting opposition would die away when its authors appreciated either its futility or unreasonableness.
The author takes pleasure in acknowledging many obligations to Hon. G. C. R. Mitchell, G. L. Davenport, Esq., James Mckintosh, Esq., D. C. Eldredge Esq., Willard Barrows, Esq., Mrs. Goldsmith, of Rock Island, Antoine LeClaire, Capt. James May, and others, who have afforded him information in regard to the early settlement of Davenport.
We would acknowledge also indebtedness to Dr. C. C. Parry for the able article upon the geological character of Davenport, to Dr. T. J. Saunders for the article upon its Medical Topography, and Scott County Medical Society, to ADD H. Sanders, Esq., for a notice of Mr. Wild, the artist, and to various Clergymen for information in regard to their respective Churches.
Of the Future of Davenport, it has been thought best to spend no time in treating - a close perusal of the Past and the Present will at once indicate the future.
With a hope that Davenport Past and Present will meet with the approbation of the public to an extent commensurate with the labor of getting it up, the author leaves it.
Davenport, April 5th, 1858.