Le Claire Iowa

River Men (and Women)



Le Claire Rivermen

 Georgeann McClure


Sue Rekkas  




Davenport Gazette, Wednesday Morning, February 2, 1876, page 1.


Le Claire, Feb.1, 1876.
Capt. Wm Allen, one of the earliest settlers of LeClaire, and one of the best known rapids pilots of days gone by, when piloting required nerves and skill to avoid the rocks of the rapids, is on a visit to his home here. The Captain has been for two years past in the mountains of Colorado and at the various famous hot springs of that region endeavoring to regain health for himself and his daughter Mrs. Jeanette Frower. The Captain says all his efforts in the mountains and at the several hot springs were useless. Some three months ago he came to Southwestern Missouri to visit a brother, when he commenced improving in health and has continued to improve ever since, so that now he enjoys better health than for many years previous. The early settlers of this part of Scott county have good reason to remember Capt. Wm. Allen with gratitude and pleasure; and no man living has more fervent wishes from his old neighbors and acquaintances for health and happiness wherever he may sojourn. 

Davenport Daily Gazette, Friday Morning, June 4, 1880, page 2.


LeClaire, June 2, 1880

Captain William Allen, one of our oldest and best known early settlers, has put in his appearance on our streets after an absence of some 3 years at Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Davenport Daily Gazette, Tuesday Morning, November 17, 1885, page 6.


Captain Wm. Allen, formerly a resident of this place, died at Hot Springs, Ark., on the 30th ultimo, aged seventy-three years. Mr. Allen was a native of Kentucky and came here in 1836, bringing with him the first stock of goods ever sold in the town. Besides being engaged in mercantile pursuits, many years of his life were spent in steam boating, in the capacity of pilot and master.


The Davenport Democrat, May 12, 1903, page 7.


The death of John Bagley, at his home at LeClaire, removed from that town one of its oldest residents, and one whose residence there covers a great length of time. Mr. Bagley passed away Saturday, May 9, at the age of 84 years. Within a few days two-thirds of his life was spent in the little town at the head of the rapids. He was born in County Cork, Ireland, and came to New York, a boy of 11 years. He came to Scott county and LeClaire in 1847, a man of 28 years. He died there after 56 years of residence in the place.
For Some time Mr. Bagley has been ill and ailing. When he was last in Davenport, one day last summer, he was not well, but was able to be about town, and go down to the levee to meet the Helen Blair, and great his best friend, Captain Walter A. Blair, when that boat came in. An attack of the grip during the winter so weaken him that he sank steadily to his death.
Mr. Bagley married, in early life, Miss Mary Quigley. They had a family of several children, of whom these survive: Thomas Bagley and Mrs. Catherine Bayliss, of this city, William of LeClaire, Edward of Hoopestown, Ill., and James of Rock Island.
The funeral, held at LeClaire, was one of the largest ever seen there. It called out all the old settlers and evidences of the regard in which Mr. Bagley was held abounded on every hand.

The Davenport Times, May 12, 1903, page 9.



A number of Davenporters attended the funeral of the late John Bagley, which was held at Le Claire at 2:30 0’clock yesterday. Mr. Bagley was an old resident of Le Claire, having lived there since 1847. He was born in Cock, Ireland, 84 years ago. He came to America at the age of 10 years with his parents and was married at the age of 19 years to Miss Mary Quigley.
He moved west and settled in Le Claire in 1847 and resided there until the time of his death. He was a ship caulker by occupation, but for many years conducted a transfer line in Le Claire. His wife died about 30 years ago. He leaves five children, Edward residing in Illinois, James of Rock Island, Thomas of Davenport, Mrs. Catherine Davis of Davenport, and William Bagley residing at the old homestead in Le Claire.
The funeral was held in Le Claire yesterday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock and was one of the largest held in that place in that place for some time.


1915 Iowa State Census Scott County LeClaire

Bailey, John W. 58 Steamboat Mate

The Daily Times, Tuesday, November 6, 1906, page 6.


LeCLAIRE, Ia., Nov 6.--J. W. Bailey arrived home Friday morning from Klondike at which place he has spent the past few months steamboating on the Yukon.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Sunday Morning, April 13, 1919. Page 13.



John W. Bailey, an old resident of LeClaire, passed away at Mercy hospital yesterday afternoon at 4 o’clock, following a six months’ illness. He was 64 years of age. The deceased was born in LeClaire, attended school and grew to young manhood there. In 1889 he was united in marriage to Miss Hannah Ward of LeClaire at Port Byron, Ill. He was a prominent member of the old Fellows’ lodge. The remains were taken to the O. C. Hill funeral parlors. The funeral will be held Monday morning at 10 o’clock in LeClaire with internment in LeClaire cemetery. The deceased is survived by the wife and one daughter, Evelyn.

The Daily Times, Monday, April 14, 1919, page 8.



The funeral of John W. Bailey, a long-time resident of LeClaire, who died Saturday afternoon at 4 o’clock at Mercy Hospital, Davenport, was held at 10 o’clock this morning from the home in LeClaire. Interment was in the LEClaire cemetery.
Mr. bailey had been suffering from a growth on his face for several months and submitted to an operation Saturday morning from which he lacked sufficient strength to recuperate.
The deceased was born in LeClaire in 1856. He was married in 1889 to Miss Hannah Litscher, who survives his death. A daughter, Evelyn, also survives. Mr. Bailey was for many years a member of Pilot lodge, No. 38, I.O.O.F.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Tuesday Evening, April 15, 1919


The Bailey Funeral

Funeral services for John W. Bailey were held Monday afternoon form the late residence at LeClaire. Interment was made in the LeClaire cemetery, six friends acting as pallbearers.

The Daily Times, Tuesday, April 15, 1919, page 8.


Bailey Funeral

The funeral of the late John W. Bailey was held at 10 o’clock yesterday morning form the home in LeClaire with Rev. M. E. Krotzer of the Presbyterian church officiating. Internment was in the LeClaire cemetery. His wife and grand-daughter survive.


1910 Census
LeClaire Town, LeClaire Township, Iowa

Stitcher Andrew Head 31 Labor Stone Quarry
Tracy wife 31 none
Bissick Eliza Brother 29 Labor River Steamer

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Monday evening, December 24, 1945, page 15.

Deaths and Funeral Announcements


Ellsworth Bissick, 63, a life resident of LeClaire, died at 5:40 a. m. Monday in St. Luke’s hospital after an illness of 10 days. He was a carpenter.
Mr. Bissick was born on May 14, 1882 in LeClaire, son of the late William and Sarah Bissick. He attended LeClaire schools.
Survivors include a sister, Mrs. Andrew Stitcher, LeClaire, and a brother, William H., St. Louis, Mo.
The body will remain at the McGinnis funeral home until noon Thursday, when it will be taken to the LeClaire Presbyterian church for services at 3 p. m. that day. Interment will be in Glendale cemetery, LeClaire.

The Daily Times, Monday, December 24, 1945, page 6.

Death Notices


Ellsworth Bissick, 63, well-known life resident of LeClaire, died at 5:40 a. m. today at St. Luke’s hospital, following a 10-day illness.
Mr. Bissick, the son of William and Sarah Reibel Bissick, was born in LeClaire, May 14, 1882, and received his education in the LeClaire schools. He had been a carpenter for many years.
Surviving is a sister, Mrs. Andrew Stichter of LeClaire and a brother, William H. Bissick of St. Louis.
The body was removed to McGinnis funeral home, and will remain there until Thursday noon. It will then be sent to LeClaire Presbyterian church, where services will be held at 3 p. m. Burial will be in Glendale cemetery, LeClaire.

The Daily Times, Friday, December 28, 1945, page 4.

Death Notices

Bissick Funeral

The funeral of Ellswoth Bissick was held at 3 p. m. Thursday in LeClaire Presbyterian church, with Rev. McCamy, pastor of the Argo Presbyterian church, officiating. Mrs. Mary Petersen was organist.
Pallbearers were Albert Morey, Dan Randolph, Harold Brenen, Ed Thompson, James Roberts and Ewold Von Hein. Burial was in Glendale cemetery, LeClaire.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Friday, December 28, 1945, page 13.

Deaths and Funerals

The Bissick Funeral

Funeral services for Ellsworth Bissick, life resident of LeClaire, were held in the LeClaire Presbyterian church at 3 p. m. Thursday with the Rev. Mr. McCany of Argo, officiating. Burial was in Glendale cemetery.
Bearers were Albert Morey, Dan Randolph, Harold Brenan, Eddie Thompson, James Roberts and Ewold Van Hein.


The Morning Democrat, Friday, September 12, 1890, page 4.
Capt. John O’Conner Talks about His Recent Difficulty with One of His Hands.
The row upon the J. W. Van Sant on its last trip up, which has been made by some to put Capt. O’Conner in a rather unfavorable light, was the subject of conversation between the Captain and an Argus representative yesterday, when the former stopped over in Rock Island for a few hours:
“We had been laying at LeClaire all day having some boiler repairs made,” the Captain said, “and it was evening when we got away. The trouble happened between LeClaire and Princeton and this is how it came about. There was an old man employed on the boat called ‘Dad’. He is a harmless, inoffensive old chap, but this man Francis McMahon, seemed to have a grudge against him. He had been picking at the old fellow for some time and particularity abusive on the evening in question. I had been watching McMahon and having determined that the matter had gone far enough, I went down to the lower deck to take the old man’s part. I had no idea of creating a disturbance but rather to preserve order. McMahan resented my interference and was so insulting that I confess that I struck him. A few blows were exchanged and having made my mind that I had settled the thing, as McMahon had said that he had got enough, I started up the stairs again. As I turned my back McMahan rushed upon me and struck me from behind and knocked me down. He was about to jump on me when the cook came to my rescue. McMahan then rushed up though the cabin and I put after him. In going past my room I reached in and got my revolver, and as McMahon had made threats, and I knew that he was murderously inclined, and there was no telling what he would do if he got a drop on me or could make a sneak and take me unawares. I followed him down to the blacksmith shop where he came at me with an immense club. I ordered him to drop it, but did not point my revolver at him. It was a self cocker, though and accidentally it went off, the bullet striking the floor and in an opposite direction from where he stood. He then retreated, and again said he would make no further trouble. But a few minutes later I found him quarreling with the pilot, George Twombley (Tromley), I again interfered as was my duty as master of the boat, and succeeded in preserving order, McMahon for the third time promising that he would behave himself. There was no more of McMahon until we reached Albany, where I was told he had left the boat. I turned the light on the shore, and saw him running up the bank. I called him back and told him to get his pay before he left, but he paid no attention. That was all there was of the trouble. The story that I fired at McMahon after he had left the boat is false, as my revolver, now in the hands of the cook, to whom I gave it after coming out of the blacksmith shop, has but one empty chamber. Equally false are the charges preferred by McMahon that myself, or any of my crew, was drunk, and will so be proven. This McMahon is a bully, and has been discharged on numerous occasions for his domineering insulting ways. Steamboatmen are generally afraid of him.
“I desire to thank my friends here,” said the captain, “for the way they have stood by me in this trouble and have not been inclined to call me guilty until they knew all sides of the case.”



The Davenport Democrat, Sunday, May 25, 1884, page 1.


And Stir Up LeClaire with Venture--What the Heroine Had, What the Mate Had, How the Parties Interested Felt--The Result Up to the Latest 

The matter-of-fact citizens of LeClaire were treated to a first-class excitement of the elopement order on Thursday evening last. The facts as gathered from various sources, seems to be about these:
The steamer Isaac Staples, owned by the Burlington Lumber company, is captained by Mr. Peele, who is also first pilot of the craft. Mr. Peele’s (Peel) family consists of wife and daughter--the later has been clerk of the boat--and since navigation has opened they have lived on the steamer. The daughter, fair and lovely, is 18 and has been in active demand in the matrimonial market. Henry Bell, known in LeClaire, where he has been bar-tender and general man-about-town for several years, as “Shorty,” was employed as mate on the Staples. An intimacy sprang up between the mate and the clerk. The mother had had her suspicions aroused some time ago that there was likely to be trouble, so she kept her eyes on the couple. At the time of the boat’s last trip down, her vigilance alone prevented the lovers from striking for a parson’s. On Thursday evening, the boat on her way down with a raft, stopped at LeClaire for coal. While the coal was being put on, the fair clerk and her married sister took a walk up town. On their return they went into a boat store to order supplies. The clerk stepped to the door, and handing the keys of the boat’s safe to her sister, said “good-bye, I am going to get married.” So saying, she jumped into a buggy standing at the door. The mate, as driver, picked up the lines and the twain were off, before the father and mother could be informed of the condition of affairs the lovers were out of sight. No effort was made to head off the runaways. The captain, although very much incensed and very much hurt, took the whole matter as a settled fact and the boat went up to her raft, while the heartbroken mother sobbed as if she had buried her child instead of secured a new son-in-law.
Miss Libbie Peele, the heroine of the episode, is 18 years of age, fine-looking, educated, and refined in manner. It is said that she has been engaged to a telegraph operator at Cedar Rapids and it was to avoid marrying him, who was her father’s choice that she eloped with Bell. It is said that Miss Peele has some twenty-five hundred dollars in her own name.
Captain Peele found, after the clerk’s departure, that the boat’s account was short a little matter of $275. This amount it is presumed, the clerk took to defray the expenses of the honeymoon.
On Friday Bell returned to LeClaire with the horse and buggy, but without the clerk. He reported that he was, and also was not, married but, as no license was issued to the parties in this county, it is probable that the ceremony was performed in some other county.
The bride’s sister, who was on the boat at the times of the elopement, was in the secret and lent her aid and advice, as did her husband.
It is supposed that the clerk and her lover came to this city after the wedding. She then realizing that she was a defaulter went to Burlington to straighten up the cash account will Bell went back to LeClaire.

The Davenport Democrat, Saturday, May 31, 1884, page 1.


The following paragraph from the Burlington Hawkeye will gratify everybody who knows the young couple spoken of:
Captain Peel, father of Miss Libbie Peele, who eloped with a young man named Bell, who was mate of the rafter, Isaac Staples, called at the Hawkeye office yesterday to correct certain rumors set afloat in connection with the romantic episode of which his daughter was the heroine. Captain Peel positively denied that the cash account of the boat was short or that he had made any statement to that effect. His daughter posted the books before leaving, drew her salary and entered it upon the books. He says that neither he nor his wife were aware of any intimacy existing between Libbie and Bell, that he is acquainted with the character of the latter, and neither opposes nor favors the union. Mr. and Mrs. Captain Peel do not censure their daughter for her conduct, and hope her marriage will prove a happy one, though they think her husband is her inferior, intellectually and socially. Mrs. Bell will be welcome to her parent’s home in Burlington at any time. A letter has been received from her, dated at Davenport, seeking parental forgiveness, which has been granted.
The Democrat regrets very much that the report that the young lady’s cash account on the steamer on which she was clerk, was short, was circulated. It is pleasant to know that her pure character was not marred by any such defalcation as that attributed to her when she married the young man of her choice.

1880 United States Federal Census Des Moines County Burlington

Age Occupation
Peel Vincent 37 Steam boat Captain
Elizabeth 38 Keeping house
Vincent 18 Work on boat
Emma 17 Music teacher
Elizabeth 16 Book keeper

Marriage Record No. 6447 Scott County Iowa 

Bell, Henry and Bell (Peel) Mary Elizabeth, date May 24, 1884 by Charles Weston, J. P., and Witness John Bard. 

The Daily Gazette, Sunday, May 25, 1884, page 4.


From the County Clerk’s office, yesterday, the following marriage licenses were granted: Henry Bell to Mary Elizabeth Peel.

1885 Iowa State Census Scott County LeClaire

Age Martial Status Where born
Gardner Elenor 42 W Scott
Elenore 15 S Scott
Lee 14 S Scott
Star William 68 W Scott
Bell Henry 28 M Scott
Libbie 20 M Des Moines
Davenport Hattie 1 S Scott 

The Daily Times, Friday, April 19, 1889, page 4.


A terrible wreck occurred last night during the storm. The tug boat, Pete Eberett (Everett), was about entering Boston Bay some forty miles south of here in order to take out another raft, when the violent storm which was then raging upset the boat and sank it, resulting in the drowning of the captain, his wife, child, nurse girl and three others. The boat was owned in Burlington.

The Morning Democrat Gazette, April 20, 1889, page 4.



How the Storm Came on--Efforts of the Gallant Crew to Prevent the Catastrophe--Sinking of the Boat--The Life Struggle--The Survivors and the Lost.

The storm of thunder, lightening, wind and rain which prevailed in Davenport and vicinity Thursday eve from 7 to 8 o’clock extended down the river for more than a hundred miles, and in some cases proved disastrous to steam boat interest.
A special dispatch to the Democrat Gazette from Burlington gives the details of the sinking of the steamer Everett in the gale. The boat was a rafter belonging to the Burlington Lumber Company. She was sunk at the head of Otter Island Thursday, and five of the 16 persons on board were drowned. The names of the dead are: 
Captain Vincent Peel,
Mrs. Harry (Henry) Bell, the clerk,
Mrs. Bell’s 3 year old daughter,
George Howard, first cook,
A nurse girl name unknown.
The Everett was on her way from Burlington to New Boston bay, when she was struck by a terrific gale of wind and sunk in 20 feet of water.
Ten of the persons on board were on the lower deck and were flung into the water as the craft sank. They were rescued in a skiff. Those drowned were inside the cabin, and were carried down when the steamer sunk.
The raft boat was valued at $8,000.
Further particulars of the wreck of the ill-fated raft steamer Everett, is thus given by the Burlington Gazette:
Rain fell and gusts of wind blew occasionally as the boat proceeded on her way, but nothing unusual or alarming happened until the boat reached the head of Otter Island. As the boat was crossing the channel at this point, and when she was about two hundred yards from the Illinois shore, the storm broke in all its fury.
The first blast of the storm was not severe, and although the boat went part way over, she almost immediately righted herself. The pilot then endeavored to get her head pointed into the wind and had almost succeeded, when the second and fatal blast struck and she immediately went over on her beam ends and began to sink.
As the boat settled down in the water her side caught on the river bottom and the current swung her around until she lay almost directly across the stream, with her bow towards the Iowa shore. As the boat went over a number of the crew clambered up to the windward side and clung to the guards with desperate energy, well knowing that certain death stared them in the face if they loosed their hold. Others who were not so fortunate, but who were all luckily, able to swim, swam around until they were rescued by their comrades and pulled up onto the wreck out of immediate danger. About six feet of the boat’s side protruded above the water and to this fact alone the survivors owe their lives, as had the water been deeper and the boat gone entirely under, it is hardly probable that any would have been saved.
Harry (Henry) Bell, the pilot, was at his place at the wheel, and when the boat went over the pilot house stove was torn from its fastenings and struck him in the face, cutting a severe gash under the eye, but luckily not knocking him senseless. As the pilot house was settling in the water Mr. Bell broke a number of the windows out and made his escape, swimming to the side of the boat and climbing up on the wreck with the others. Captain Peel, Mrs. Bell and her little child, George Howard and his wife, and Rhoda Van Ettan were shut up in the cabin and it is a wonder that even one of them was saved. The windows and doors were all shut tight, but the water forced its way in like a sluice. It is supposed that Captain Peel was knocked senseless and perhaps killed as the boat went over, as he has a terrible wound on the left side of his head, which must have been caused by his striking something hard with great force. The others, with the exception of Mrs. Howard perished miserably beneath the waves, there being no chance of rescue for them. Mrs. Howard fortunately found a place along the outer edge of the cabin which was not submerged, knocked a hole though a transom with her hand to get air and after enduring about 30 minutes of the keenest agony was rescued by the men, who at last heard her cries.
The situation of those clinging to the wreck was now desperate in the extreme as the current was liable at any minute to tear away the sunken boat from her resting place and carry all the survivors to watery graves. Harry Bell knew that his wife was in the cabin at the time of the disaster, and being unable to stand the awful suspense of not knowing whether she was drowned or not, he soon began to search for her. Nothing could be seen except at intervals when flashes of lightening lighted up the scene, but at last through a hole kicked by him in the transom Mr. Bell grasped a woman’s dress, the dress worn by his wife. The body of Mrs. Bell was drawn out, but although it was still warm, life had fled. Willing hands worked for hours, but all efforts to rescue her were in vain. About 9 o’clock, two hours after the boat went down, the continued cries of the survivors were answered by the appearance of two men, Andy and Sam Jacobs, who had rowed to the scene in a skiff from the Illinois shore, and who at once conveyed the eleven people clinging to the wreck to the shore and fire was built and the rescued people made themselves as comfortable as possible under the dreadful circumstances.
All the bodies which have been recovered were caught in the wreck and had to be torn loose, Capt. Peel being found head downwards, his head being imprisoned between two heavy timbers.

The Morning Democrat Dispatch, Tuesday, April 25, 1889, page 4.


They raised the safe belonging to the sunken steamer Everett Tuesday afternoon, together with her headlight and a great number of ropes. The safe might about as well have been left at the bottom of the river; however, as the combination refuses to work and it will be a rather serious job to get it open. An experienced diver from Cairo, Ill., is now working around the wreck, and efforts are being made to get the boat, which is now lying on its side, pulled over and righted. 

Scott County, Iowa Death Record

Carleton, Harry E. Engineer November 11, 1901 Consumption LeClaire, Iowa

The Davenport Times, Monday, November 13, 1901, page 2.


Harry Carleton

This afternoon at his home in LeClaire occurred the death of Harry Carleton. He was 42 years of age and leaves a wife and two children. A year ago he went to Salt Lake City to try a change of climate for his health. At that city he embarked in the grocery business. He experienced but little benefit and a month ago returned home. The funeral will be held at 2 o’clock from the LeClaire home.

The Davenport Times, Wednesday, November 13, 1901, page 5.

Robert Carleton and his daughter Nennie, with Mrs. J. A. DeArmond, went to LeClaire today to attend the funeral of Harry Carleton, whose death occurred Monday.


“Mrs. Tesson, a well-known cook on the upper Mississippi is filling the place of Miss Sadie Cassilly as cook on the steamer Eclipse. Miss Cassilly’s health being poor she had to top off.”

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Thursday Evening, February 23, 1933, page 8.


Native of LeClaire Succumbs to Long Illness; Surviving Family.

LeClaire, Ia., Feb. 23.--Miss Sarah Cassilly, ages 77 years, native of LeClaire and resident here until the death of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Edward Cassilly, died Tuesday in Chicago, where she had made her home with a niece, Mrs. Lou McClune, in recent years. Death followed an illness of several years.
After the death of her parents, Miss Cassilly made her home in Rock Island a few years and later went to Chicago. A brother, F. I. Cassilly of LeClaire and two nieces, Mrs. McClune, and Mrs. Louis Day, St. Louis, are the only immediate relatives surviving.

The Daily Times, Thursday, February 23, 1933, page 4.

Death Notices



Miss Sarah Cassilly, a former resident of LeClaire, died at 12:45 p. m. Tuesday at the home of her niece, Miss Lulu McKuen in Chicago. Born in LeClaire, the decedent was 70 years of age and spent most of her life in that community. In recent years she lived in Rock Island and for the last eight years she had been making her home in Chicago.
Surviving are one brother, Frank Cassilly of LeClaire, and a number of nieces and nephews. The body arrived in Davenport this afternoon and was taken to the Halligan funeral home.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, February 24, 1933, page 9.


The Cassilly Funeral

Funeral services were held at 10 o’clock this morning at the Halligan funeral home. The Rev. M. G. Morgan officiated at the home and at the grave in Glendale cemetery, LeClaire.
The bearers were Merle Cassilly, Arthur Day, Lynn Fulrath, and Fritz Fedderson.

The Daily Times, Friday, February 24, 1933, page 8.

Death Notices

Cassilly Funeral

Funeral services for Miss Sarah Cassilly were held at 10 a. m. today at the Halligan funeral home with the Rev. M. G. Morrin officiating. Burial was in Glendale cemetery, LeClaire.
Pallbearers were Merle Cassilly, Lynn Fulrath, Arthur Day and Fritz Fedderson.


Records of deaths, Scott County, Iowa 

Chambers, Thomas M. Male 57 years Steamboat cook Dec. 18, 1901 General Debility 

The Davenport Times, Saturday, December 21, 1901, page 2.



Word comes of the death of T. C. Chambers of LeClaire, better known as “Milt” Chambers, who died at the Soldiers Home in Milwaukee. He was for years a cook on the packets plying between St. Louis and St. Paul and on the rafters. He was a member of the G.A.R. and made his home in Clinton for many years. He was 60 years of age at the time of his death.

He was married at LeClaire to Miss D. A. Janes, who lives in this city now and has been cashier at the Robert Krause company’s establishment for several years. He also leaves two daughters, Lottie and May.
The remains will be brought to LeClaire, where the funeral will take place.

The Davenport Democrat, December 22, 1901, page 7.



News of the death of T. C. Chambers reached here Saturday. He was well known here several years ago. His wife lives in this city as do also his two daughters. He died at Milwaukee, Wis. The remains will be taken to LeClaire for internment.


1885 Iowa State Census LeClaire Scott county

Cutting Sanborn Head 43 Riverhand
Lola wife 38 Keeping house
Stringham Wm stepson 22 Laborer
Charles stepson 19 Laborer
Cutting Lorena daughter 12 none
Gracie daughter 1 none

As shown by the 1885 Iowa State Census one of Sanborn’s jobs was a riverhand and later he became a day laborer.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Friday, June 23, 1911, page 15.



Sanborn Cuttings passed away at his home about a mile northwest of LeClaire, at 8:30 o’clock Thursday evening after a severe illness from complications resulting from lagrippe.
Mr. Cuttings was born at Haverhill, N. H., June 10, 1841. He was the son of Elizabeth Sanborn and Chester Cuttings. He came west in 1854 with his parents and four brothers and located in Rock Island in 1854. After a short residence there he went to Howard county, Ia. AT the age of 20 years he was smitten with the gold fever and crossed the plains to California, where he spent seven years prospecting, after which he returned to Iowa and was married Sept. 18, 1871, to Mary E. Shaw at Princeton, Iowa. Five children were born to this union; two of whom survive, Mrs. Elmer Knapp and Mrs. Alfred Knapp, both of LeClaire, and four grandchildren. He is also survived by his wife.
Mr. Cuttings had been a resident of Scott county for 40 years.
One brother, Henry Cuttings, of Tennessee, survives and was present during his last illness.
Funeral services were held Wednesday afternoon with interment in LeClaire cemetery.

The Daily Times, Friday, June 23, 1911, page 6.



At 8:30 o’clock last evening at his home about a mile northwest of LeClaire, occurred the death of Sanborn Cutting, after a lingering illness of complication of disease resulting from an attach of grip. Deceased was born at Haverhill, New Hampshire, June 10, 1841, son of Chester and Elizabeth Sanborn Cutting. Came west with his parents and four brothers in 1854 locating in Rock Island, Ill., going from there to Howard county, Iowa , in 1856. When a boy of 20 years he went to California crossing the plains by wagon and spent 7 years in the gold fields, prospecting, returning to Iowa he was married to Mary Louisa Shaw at Princeton, Ia., Sept 1871. To this union five children were born of whom two survive, Mesdames E. E. and A. J. Knapp of LeClaire together with the widow and a brother, Henry of Tennessee, also four grandchildren.
Mr. Cutting has been a resident of Scott county, forty continuous years. Funeral arrangements will be announced later.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Tuesday, June 27, 1911.


The funeral of Sanborn Cuttings was held Saturday afternoon from the late home, Rev. B. S. Bailey conducted the services, assisted by a choir composed of Mesdames Clark and Rathmann and Miss Anna Laird and Jas. P. Suiter. Burial took place in Princeton cemetery, the following relatives and old friends acting as pallbearers, E. E. Knapp, A. J. Knapp, Henry Cuttings, Chas, Stringham and Chas. Stringham, Jr., of Lyons, Ia. And Dr. John Knox of Princeton. The funeral was largely attended by relatives and old friends. Henry Cuttings brother of the deceased, departed Monday for his home in Tennessee. 


The Davenport Gazette, Thursday, September 29, 1853, page 1.


“But the largest and best establishment we observed--perhaps from insufficient examination of the place, as our stay was very limited--was the grist mill of Mr. A. H. Davenport. For its size it is one of the best mills in western country. It is four stories high and every part of it constructed compactly and with regard of the saving of labor. From the time the wheat is taken out of the wagon, it is touched no more until in the form of flour it is in the barrel ready for the head and brand. By the latter part of next week, Mr. Davenport will have three run of stones in operation and will then be able to turn out one hundred barrels of flour per day.
This mill was constructed by a millwright residing upon the opposite shore, whose name we did not get, but who, from his work, we would pronounce a master mechanic and we would commend him to all looking to neatness and durability in the construction of mills. The stack, or chimney, is 75 feet high, very symmetrical and, we presume, the tallest one in the county.
The good people of Le Claire need have no fears of starving this winter, nor of not obtaining good flour--judging by the sample we ate in good white bread at the table of Mrs. Parkhurst, at the “Le Claire House.”

Daily Gazette, Saturday Morning, March 26, 1881, page 4.


Word comes from LeClaire that Capt. A. H. Davenport, who last summer suffered from a stroke of paralysis, and during the winter partially recovered from it, is again lying quite low.

The Davenport Democrat, Sunday, March 28, 1881, page 1.


The Bark of Captain A. M. Davenport Moored There--One of the Oldest and Most Prominent Citizens of the County Goes Hence--Sketch of His Eventful Career.

A man who, during the first twenty years of the settlement of Scott county, was one of the most prominent citizens in this county, as in business and public offices he was probably the most important and widely known, died at his home in LeClaire at one o’clock Sunday afternoon--Adrian H. Davenport.
It was on the 11th of May last, that Captain Davenport was stricken with paralysis, and for a month after his life hung in the balance; but he recovered, only to experience a similar attack one day last week, and this proved fatal.
What an interesting sketch of the early history of this region of Illinois and Iowa Captain Davenport could have written had he set himself to it.
He was born in Shawneetown, Ill., March 14, 1812, the son of Marmaduke S. Davenport. His father was appointed Indian agent on Rock Island in 1832, and it was then that his family came to the island to live. Adrian H. was married on the island in 1833 to Miss Harriet Lane, who came here with the family, the ceremony being performed by Col. George Davenport, as U. S. official, there being no other person with authority to do so between Galena and Warsaw. Mrs. Davenport proved one of the best of wives and mothers--and he has survived her loss less than a year, for she died in June 1880. In March, 1834, Adrian Davenport made a claim on Credit island (now known as Offermann’s island), built a home thereon, and lived there for two or three years--and was there joined by his father, whose Indian agency on the island had been removed to Green Bay, Wis. On the island Adrian Davenport’s first son was born--the second male child born in Scott county. In March, 1834, Adrian Davenport made a claim at Rockingham--and he, his father, his uncle James, and Col. John Sullivan, became proprietors of the site, and laid out the town, while Adrian established a ferry between Rockingham and the mouth of Rock river, which was opposite. He kept a general store at Rockingham, and did a very large business. When he settled there, there were only two houses on the site, and he occupied one of them. He was the moving spirit in Rockingham until along 1840, when Davenport was established as the county seat, or rather the court house was built here, which was in 1840--and the desertion of Rockingham commenced, the leading spirits, aside from Mr. Davenport striking out for Davenport. This was a serious matter for Adrian H. He was now sheriff of Scott county, which included the present county of Clinton, an office to which he was elected in 1839 as the successor of Major Wilson, who was appointed Sheriff by Governor Lucas, and he maintained his office at Rockingham. But it was of no use, and the public spirited merchant and citizen came to Davenport himself in the early forties. After Clinton county was partitioned off, Mr. Davenport was continued in the Shrievalty of Scott county--and filled the office until 1847, when he was succeeded by Harvey Leonard, and he ,with his father, removed to LeClaire, where they had acquired considerable property.
He served as a volunteer through the Blackhawk war as first lieutenant under Gen. Posey.
Mr. Davenport’s father died in LeClaire in 1872.
Mr. Davenport and Mr. Leonard have the honor of being the only Democrats who have filled the office of Sheriff of this county.
Mr. Davenport soon became the leading man in LeClaire-- was the first Mayor of the town, and was re-elected every spring for several years. Everybody respected him, for everybody knew he would do only what he thought was right. He did a large business at his store, was a sort of general adviser for people in trouble, everybody went to him for advise and help. He filled, also, the office of Justice of the Peace and township trustee, and School Director.
His acquaintance at LeClaire did not commence, however, with his removal there - for as far back as 1837, he and Samuel Lyter had a store there, Mr. L. attending to the business.
But for thirty years LeClaire has been his home -- and never was a man or family more highly esteemed in a town than Adrian H. Davenport and family have been in LeClaire.
After Mr. Davenport moved to LeClaire he became engaged in river business, and for years was captain of the finest steamboats on the upper Mississippi--packets such as the Audubon, Lynx and Franklin, which were famous in their day.
One pleasant day week before last he went out to take a cutter ride, the cutter was upset, and he was cast into the snow, taking a severe cold. He went home chilled--his former ailment returned, and so he lay until he died.
Six children are living--J. H. and W. A., esteemed citizens of LeClaire, Mrs. Anna E. Hewitt of Chicago, Mrs. Sarah McCaffrey and Mrs. Elvira Gardner of LeClaire, and Mrs. Virginia Henderson, of Princeton.
The funeral will take place to-morrow (Tuesday) forenoon at half-past ten o’clock.

The Daily Gazette, Monday Morning, March 28, 1881, page4.


Death of Captain A. H. Davenport, of LeClaire.

The First White Settler to Locale in Scott County.

The First Marriage Ceremony Performed in Rock Island County--A Useful and Active Life--Sketch of the Deceased.

Captain A. H. Davenport died at his home in Le Claire, at 1:45 o’clock yesterday afternoon, March 27, aged 67 years and 13 days.
The deceased enjoyed the honor during life of being the first white settler of Scott county. Last summer Capt. Davenport was afflicted by a paralytic shock from the effects of which he never fully rallied. His life was even despaired at that time, but his sturdy energies refused to yield. He continued to improve until the cold weather when his health began failing again. On Friday last he was much worse and The Gazette of Saturday stated his position as being critical. In his death another of those who braved the danger of the early times, who in his active life was well known, and who has left a name that will be perpetuated, is borne away.
Capt. Davenport was born at Shawneetown, Illinois, March 14, 1812, and as we have said was the first American to feast his eyes upon the prairies of this locality. He was also the first white settler married in what is now Rock Island county, though at that time it was of course without a name. The ceremony was preformed on the Island, Col. George Davenport officiating, March 30, 1833. He fought against the redskins all though the Black Hawk war, serving as First Lieutenant under General Posey. Again Captain Davenport was the first sheriff of Scott county, being, we believe twice elected to that office, thus holding it for three terms. Early in his western experience he lived on Credit Island, from there he went to Rockingham, being the first merchant to open a store in that region. When enough of the early settlers had gathered to organize the society of the Pioneer Settlers of Scott County, he was made its first Vice-President.
Perhaps the most active years of the deceased were passed at Le Claire, whose first Mayor Capt. Davenport was. In the spring of 1848 the firm of Davenport, Rogers & Co., began the erection of the first steam saw mill in that place. It’s location was just below the present site of the boat yard there. Two years later, or in 1850, a large flouring mill was built adjoining the saw mill. In 1851 they were both destroyed by fire. The same firm engaged about this time in the grocery, dry goods and general line. Their trade soon grew into immense proportions. Farmers for 25 and 30 miles around on both sides of the river found that they could trade with most satisfaction with Davenport, Rogers & Co., of Le Claire. It was in 1850 or thereabouts that Capt. Davenport built the Rapids saw mill on the site of the one burned down last October. The same year he bought of Antoine Le Claire, the tract of land known as “Le Claire’s Reserve.” This was north of the present city of Le Claire and between that and the town of Parkhurst. It was laid out into lots, as was also Davenport and Roger’s addition. These, the “Reserve,” Parkhurst and the “addition”, were consolidated into what is now the City of Le Claire. In 1857 he built the Davenport block which contained the first public hall Le Claire ever saw. In 1862 the subject of this sketch embarked in the clothing business..
The veteran pioneer earned his rank and title of “Captain” on the river. From 1850 to 1860 his connection with steam boating continued. He was a part or sole owner of the Uncle Toby, a St. Louis and Galena packet, the Audubon, Envoy, Kentucky, Courier, and many other boats. He was also one of the original stockholders in the company that constructed the Le Claire boat ways.
Of all the vigorous men who have settled in the good county of Scott, early or late, there are few who have been so industrious in prosecuting business on a large and successful scale as Capt. A. H. Davenport, or who have made more friends. He was bold in planning and zealous in executing. His death will be mourned by the great number who knew him, and it will efface from local history another landmark long prominent.
Six children survive him--two sons and four daughters. A. H. Davenport and W. A. Davenport are merchants of Le Claire. The oldest daughter is Mrs. Ann Eliza Hewitt, who was married in Davenport and whose husband was long a prominent merchant here. She now resides in Chicago. Another daughter is Mrs. Sarah Jane McCaffrey, of Le Claire. A third is Mrs. Elvira Gardner, a widow, now living at Le Claire. The fourth is Mrs. Virginia Henderson, whose home is at Princeton.
The funeral of Capt. Davenport will be held tomorrow afternoon at 2 o’clock.

Daily Gazette, Tuesday Morning, March 29, 1881, page 4


The funeral of the late Col. A. H. Davenport, of LeClaire occurs at his homestead this afternoon at two o’clock.


The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Sunday Morning, October 4, 1914, page 9.


D. A. Dorrance Passes Away at His Home in Moline--Heart Trouble Cause.

Capt. D. A. Dorrance, veteran river pilot, died at 12:45 o’clock yesterday morning at the family home, 342 Fourth avenue, Moline. Heart failure is given as the cause. He was discovered shortly after midnight in his room, and it was apparent that he was dying.
Although a physician was summoned immediately, the old river man had passed down the stream for the last time before his arrival. An inquest held this morning resulted in a verdict of “death by natural causes,” being returned by the coroner’s jury.
Capt. Dorrance was born July 13, 1848, in LeClaire, Ia., where he received his education. Later, when a young man, he came to Moline, and together with his older brother, D. F. Dorrance, entered the lime business. For a number of years the two conducted a successful brokerage business, which was later sold. He then went to St. Paul, where he remained for three years as agent for a lime company.
For the past decade he had been recognized as a riverman of considerable ability as a pilot, and during that time has acted in the capacity of captain of the steamer Pearson, which is now engaged in towing sand and gravel barges on the Mississippi.
The late captain was one of the oldest members of the Christian church in LeClaire in former years. He was also a charter member of the LeClaire chapter of the Modern Woodmen of America.
There survive three sons and a daughter, Charles, George and Louis Dorrance and Miss Bessie Dorrance. Tow brothers, D. F. and Derwin Dorrance, are also living.
The body will be sent to LeClaire, where funeral services will be held from the Presbyterian church at 2 o’clock tomorrow afternoon. Burial will be made in LeClaire cemetery.

The Daily Times, Saturday, October 3, 1914, page 19.



Coroner Holds Inquest and Finds That Death Was Due to Natural Causes--Burial in LeClaire

Captain D. A. Dorrance, 66 years old, died at 12:45 this morning of heart trouble, at his home 342 Fourth avenue. Shortly after midnight members of the household were attracted to his room, and it was apparent that he was dying. A physician was hurriedly summoned, but before he arrived Mr. Dorrance passed away.
An inquest was held over the remains this morning, the jury returning the verdict that death was due to natural causes.
Mr. Dorrance was born July 13, 1848, at LeClaire, Ia., where he received his education. In later years he came to Moline and entered the lime business with is older brother D. F. Dorrance, who now survives him. For several years they conducted a successful business here and later the business was sold. He then went to St. Paul where he remained for three or four years as agent of a lime company.
For the past ten years he has been recognized as a riverman and during a decade of years acted in the capacity of captain of the steamboat Pearson which is now carrying sand and gravel barges up and down the Mississippi.
He was one of the charter members of the LeClaire lodge of the Modern Woodmen of America. He was also one of the oldest members of the Christian church in LeClaire in former years.
The deceased leaves three boys and one daughter, Charles, George, Louis and Bessie. He is also survived by two brothers, D. F. and Derwin.
The body will be sent to LeClaire where funeral services will be held from the Presbyterian church at 2 o’clock Monday afternoon. Interment will be made in the LeClaire cemetery.


The Davenport Democrat and Leader, March 9, 1914, page 14.


Deboice Dorrance Passed Away Sunday at Mercy Hospital.

Captain Deboice Dorrance, an old and respected citizen of LeClaire, died Sunday Morning at Mercy Hospital, Davenport, at the age of 74 years. He was formerly a well-known river pilot.
Deceased was born in Jamestown, N. Y., March 27, 1840. When a child two years old he came West with his parents, settling for a short time in Rock Island and then moving to LeClaire, where he has since made his home.
Mr. Dorrance was a veteran of the Civil war, serving in Co. F, Eighth Iowa. He is survived by three brothers, all river captains. These are Captain D. F. and Captain Derwin Dorrance of LeClaire and Captain D. A. Dorrance of Moline. Deceased had never been married.
The remains have been taken to the home of a nieces, Mrs. Herschel Dorrance in LeClaire. Funeral services will be held there at 2 o’clock Tuesday afternoon. The old soldiers will be in charge. Burial will take place in the LeClaire cemetery.

The Daily Times, March 9, 1914, page 5.



Funeral services for Devoice Dorrance, 74 years old, who died yesterday at Mercy hospital, will be held from the home of his niece, Mrs. H. Dorrance, in LeClaire, at 2 o’clock tomorrow afternoon. Interment will be made in the LeClaire cemetery.
Mr. Dorrance was born in Jamestown, N.Y.., March 27, 1840, and in 1842 removed with his parents to Rock Island. At the outbreak of the civil war he enlisted in Co. B, Eighth Iowa infantry, and served through the war. In 1865 he returned to LeClaire where he resided ever since.
Two months ago because of the infirmities of his age, it became necessary to remove Mr. Dorrance to Mercy hospital in Davenport. Three brothers, Capt. D. F. Dorrance, LeClaire; Derwin Dorrance, Davenport, and D. A. Dorrance of Moline survive.


The Davenport Democrat, July 15, 1885, page1.




The old river pilot, De Los Dorrance, died suddenly in his bed, at the home of his brother Durbin in LeClaire at three o’clock this morning. He was about town last evening, apparently as well as ever, and went to bed without complaint of ailment. At quarter to 8 o’clock the other inmates of the house were aroused by his groans, and his sister-in-law went to his room to find him senseless with apoplexy or heart disease. A Doctor was summoned, but Dorrance died in a few minutes after his arrival.
De Los Dorrance was fifty-two years of age--came to LeClaire when he was a child, and has had his home there ever since. He has been a pilot on the upper Mississippi for more than thirty years-- and a portion of that period was in the wheel-house of the large packets. He was master and pilot of the steamer Jennie Gilchrist, in ‘82, (October 27, 1881) when she met with the disaster by the breaking down of her machinery, floating back against a pier of the government bridge with barge, and sinking below the city, nine persons losing their lives. After that Mr. Dorrance had little to do with river traffic. He was a single man--divorced from his wife 10 years since. He was a brother of De Forest Dorrance, the rapids pilot, and of Durbin Dorrance, pilot of the Bebstock.

See also “Dan (De Los) Dorrance, Peter Smith, and The Erring Wife”
“Jennie Gilchrist”


The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Thursday Evening, July 31, 1919, page 15.


Derwin Dorrance Passes Away This Morning at Mercy Hospital.

At 10 o’clock this morning, at Mercy Hospital, Captain Derwin Dorrance passed away after a lingering illness.
He has made his home in LeClaire, and had recently been brought to the local hospital for treatment. 
He was born March 3, 1850, and had all his life until recent years been prominently associated with the river packet and steamer life. He was a familiar figure in river towns, and had hosts of friends.
No immediate relatives survive, but a number of nieces and nephews are left to mourn his loss.
Recently Mrs. Sarah Van Duzer, of 1815 West Third street, has served as his guardian, and has managed his affairs.
The remains have been taken to the Ruhl and Ebert funeral parlors, and interment will be held from there at noon Saturday, with burial in LeClaire cemetery. Short services will be held in the Presbyterian church at LeClaire. 

The Daily Times, Thursday, July 31, 1919, page 8.


Derwin Dorrance, a life-long resident of LeClaire, for many years a captain on the Mississippi river, died at 10 o’clock this morning at Mercy Hospital, Davenport, after an extended illness.
He was born March 3, 1850, and had resided in LeClaire his entire life. There are no immediate survivors. Mrs. Sarah Van Doser of Davenport has been his guardian for many years.
The funeral will be held Saturday afternoon at 12:30 o’clock from the Ruhl & Ebert funeral parlors, Davenport, with services following at 2 o’clock at the Presbyterian church in LeClaire. Interment will be in the LeClaire cemetery.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Sunday Morning, August 3, 1919, page 13.


The Dorrance Funeral.

Funeral services for the late Captain Derwin Dorrance were held Saturday afternoon at 12:30 o’clock from the Ruhl and Ebert funeral parlors to the LeClaire Presbyterian church, LeClaire, Iowa. Rev. M. C. Krotzer officiated at the church and at the grave in LeClaire cemetery.
The pallbearers were six old friends of the Captain.

Dana (De Los) Dorrance, Peter Smith, and the Erring Wife.

Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, 1763-1900

Groom Bride Date Vol/Page No. County

The Davenport Democrat, Monday, January 29, 1877, page 1


Wanders into Crooked Ways--Was She Over-Persuaded, or Was it Voluntarily--Her Husband Wants $5,000 Damages From the Destroyer of His Peace.

A suit was commenced in the Circuit Court today by Dana Dorrance, (the husband of Emma A.) against P. W. Smith, claiming of him the sum of $5,000 damages, and for cause of action, specifies:
1st. That plaintiff was married to said Emma A. Dorrance, in July 11, 1874, and from that time up to October 1876, continued to live in peace, and harmony, etc. with her, but that
2nd. The defendant, the wicked P. W. Smith, contriving and unlawfully intending to injure the plaintiff--Dana Dorrance-- and to deprive him of the comfort, fellowship and assistance of said Emma Amanda Dorrance, his wife, and to alienate and destroy her affection for him, on or about Oct. 1, 1876 and divers other days and times between that date and the commencement of this action, at LeClaire and at other places, did willfully and wickedly debauch, seduce, etc, the said Emma Amanda Dorrance, then and still the wife of said Dana Dorrance, and did thereby alienate her affections from him, Dana; and since that time the plaintiff has wholly lost the comfort, fellowship, society and assistance of the said Emma Amanda in his domestic affairs, which during that time he ought to have had, etc., to the damage, at the hands of said defendant, the wicked and naughty P. W. Smith, in the sum of $5,000, which amount Dorrance prays that Smith pay. This will prove an interesting suit to the morbidly inclined.

Davenport Gazette, Tuesday Morning, January 30, 1877, page 4.


The modest sum of five thousand dollars is wanted by Mr. Dana Dorrance, and he demands that it shall be taken from the coffers of Captain P. M. Smith, who navigates the Mississippi between Port Byron and LeClaire. He asks the Circuit Court to give him judgment for that amount; and for cause states that on the 4th of July, 1874, he “was lawfully married to his wife, Emma Amanda Dorrance, and took up his residence in LeClaire.” There was comparative peace in his domicile until the 1st day of October last, when Emma Amanda’s affections for her husband seemed alienated, and Mr. Smith was the alienator; and from that day to this Dana has wholly lost and been deprived of the comfort, fellowship, society, aid and assistance of his Emma Amanda. And if such deprivation isn’t worth $5,000, then there’s nothing worth anything.

Davenport Gazette, Wednesday Morning, February 7, 1877, page 4.


The Case of “Woes”

Le Claire. Feb. 6. 1877.
The notice in the Gazette of last week, of “A Le Claire Husband’s Woes,” created a feeble ripple of commotion in this community at the time, and gave rise to numerous facial contortions that partook largely of the aerio-comic-serious to parties in interest that are compelled to dance attendance upon the blind dame supposed to hold the scales in equipoise; comic in that such high values are placed on damaged goods.

Davenport Gazette, Wednesday Morning, Feb 28, 1877, page 4.


The case of Dorrance vs. Smith Settled for $100.

LECLAIRE, Feb. 27, 1877.
The woes of “the” LeClaire husband, so graphically set forth in the Gazette about a month ago, were satisfactory alleviated and his lacerated feelings and domestic happiness fully restored to its normal condition, one day last week, by the receipt in full of two per cent. Of the modest amount of $5,000 damages claimed. So the feast of unsavory viands promised in the case of Dorrance vs. Smith is, for the present, off.

Also in the same column is the following and could be now the money was made to pay Dana Dorance.
The ferry boat, Twin City, left her winter quarters yesterday, and entered upon her season’s work between LeClaire and Port Bryon. . . . Captain J. E. Smith is now sole owner of the ferry boat and its franchises, which is a sufficient guarantee of promptness and courtesy in conducting the same. 

The Davenport Democrat, Friday, July 18, 1879, page 1.


Mr. Dana A. Dorrance of LeClaire has commenced proceedings in the District Court of this county for a divorce from his wife, Emma A. Dorrance. The lady deserted her lord several years ago, and suit for divorce is brought on the grounds of desertion.

See Also DeLos Dorrance and The Jennie Gilchrist 


1880 Census LeClaire, Scott, Iowa

Doughty Thomas Self 51 Marine Engineer
Maryann Wife 40 Housekeeping
Lola L. Dau 20 At home
Hamilton Son 11 At home
Katy Belle Dau 6 At home

The Davenport Daily Times, Friday Evening, January 8, 1897, page 2.


The Present System Originated by the Late Capt. Doughty.

The Port Bryon Globe credits the late Capt. Thomas Doughtily, whose death occurred at St. Louis recently, with being the originator of raft towing as carried on at the present time on the Mississippi. The captain, who was one of the pioneer engineers on the upper river was the first man, according to the Port Bryon paper, to use a boat for the purpose of towing rafts. Prior to that innovation, the rafts were floated down stream and guided by immense paddles at either end. His idea was that the boat should guide the raft and although under his plan the paddles were still used on the front of the raft to assist in steering, all the principle features of rafting as it is conducted today were inaugurated. Through lack of means the scheme failed to be productive of any satisfactory results. Capt. Doughtily served in the navy during the whole of the war, and at its close he built a steamboat called the LeClaire, which was navigated here for some years. For the past ten years he had been an invalid but took the keenest interest in river affairs up to the last, and lived to see his ideas perfected until with the use of bowboats, electric searchlights and other modern appliances rafting has been reduced almost to an exact science. Like many another hapless originator of an idea his invention proved of no direct pecuniary benefit to him.

Morning Democrat, December 22, 1896, page 4.



Was One of the First to Seek to Improve on the Old Towing System--His career as a Resident of this County. 

One of the best known river men of the upper Mississippi breathed his last at St. Louis yesterday, that city having been the home of Thomas Doughty since he left LeClaire a dozen years ago. Death was the result of diabetic coma, and was not unexpected, as it terminated a period of declining health extending over several years.
During his residence in LeClaire, from the time of his return from service in the United States navy during the entire civil war, Mr. Doughty was actively identified with the rafting interests of the Upper Mississippi. He built and was part owner of the first raft boat which attempted to handle the rafts from the pineries to the mills, but sold out his interests in the boat before the practical improvement which that method offered over the old method of floating the raft and guiding it with sweeps was manifested. He went into the engine room after that and was known as an expect engineer until the time that he retired from active service. He was a college bred man, having been fitted by education for a professional life, but upon coming west was attracted by the steamboat business and devoted to it the natural ability and training that would have won him success in any walk of life.
The deceased was a Mason of long affiliation and high degree, as well as a member of the Loyal Legion of St. Louis.
He is survived by his wife, and four children, Mrs. J. A. DeArmand of Davenport, Mrs. Robert Carleton of Omaha, Mrs. L. M. Hutchinson, of the City of Mexico, and J. H. Doughty of St. Louis.
The funeral will take place in St. Louis.

The Davenport Daily Times, Tuesday Evening, December 22, 1896, page 2.


Thomas Doughty a Former Resident of LeClaire: Passes Away.

A telegram received by Davenport relative yesterday announced the death of Thomas Doughty, the veteran river engineer, which occurred yesterday at the family home in St. Louis. His death was the result of a period of declining health, extending over several years and his death will be generally regretted, especially among the river men where he was known so well. Mr. J. A. DeArmand, daughter of the deceased, left last evening for St. Louis to attend the funeral.
Thomas Doughty was numbered among the foremost river men along the upper Mississippi, and for many years he was a resident of LeClaire. During the civil war Mr. Doughty was a member of the United States Navy and at its close turned his attention to the rafting interests on the upper river. He built and was part owner of the first boat attempting to handle rafts from the pineries to the mills. When the improvement had manifested itself in a practical way he sold out his interest and commenced work as a practical engineer. The change in the method of lowering logs he introduced was taken up by the mill men and soon supplanted the old method of floating the rafts and guiding them with “sweeps.” Although a college bred man and fitted for professional life he became attracted by steam boating and his natural ability soon assured his success from the start. Mr. Doughty was a member of high standing in the Masonic order, as well as a member of the Loyal Legion of St. Louis. About 12 years ago he removed from LeClaire to St. Louis, which city has been his home since that time.
He is survived by his wife and four children, Mrs. Robert J. A. DeArmand of Davenport, Mrs. Robert Carleton of Omaha, Mrs. L. M. Hutchinson of the City of Mexico, and J. H. Doughty of St. Louis. The funeral will take place in St. Louis.

The Morning Democrat, Wednesday, December 23, 1896, page 4.



The St. Louis Globe-Democrat gives the following details as to the life of Capt. Thomas Doughty, formerly of LeClaire, whose death has been noticed in these columns:
Capt. Doughty was born at Meadville, Pa., July 1, 1828. He came west and engaged in steam boating. In July, 1862, he was appointed acting first assisting engineer, United States navy, and ordered to service on the United States steamship Indianola, under the command of Lieut. George Brown, now the ranking admiral of the navy. On the 31 of December 1862 he was appointed to acting chief engineer, United States navy. With other vessels, the Indianola ran the batteries at Vicksburg, and participated in the battle near Grand Gulf, where she was sunk. Capt. Doughty, with others, was taken prisoner and sent to Libby prison, at Richmond, Va. After his exchange he was ordered to duty on the monitor Osage, built by Capt. James B. Eads. During the Red river expedition the turret of the Osage became disabled and it was thought that the vessel was practically out of commission for the balance of the war, but Engineer Doughty obtained permission to attempt its repair, witch was granted, and in a few days the Osage was in good fighting trim, for which he received special commendation from Admiral Selfridge.
His funeral will take place at 2 p.m. today from his late residence, 4575 A West Bell Avenue. His remains, in compliance with his expressed wish, will be cremated.


1920 Census, State of Iowa, Scott county, LeClaire Township, LeClaire Town

Feehan Bridgit Head 87 none
William Son 49 Pilot Steamboat

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Thursday Evening, March 14, 1935, page 11.


William Feehan, life resident of LeClaire, died at the family home in LeClaire at 7:30 a.m. today after an illness of the last eight weeks. Born in LeClaire April 4, 1870, he was engaged in work on the river in various capacities and for the last 26 years had been employed by the government.
Surviving is a half-brother, T. E. Kennedy, LeClaire; two sisters, Mrs. Margaret Disney, LeClaire, and Mrs. C. B. Christensen, Eugene, Ore., and nieces and nephews. The body was taken to the Halligan funeral home where funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday. Burial will be in St. Marguerite’s cemetery.

The Daily Times, Thursday, March 14, 1935, page 4.


William Feehan, a life resident of LeClaire and a river man, died at his home in LeClaire, following an illness of the past eight weeks.
Mr. Feehan was born April 4, 1870 in LeClaire and was engaged in work on the Mississippi river for many years, the last 26 of which he was employed by the United States government, under the engineers’ direction.
Surviving are one brother, T. G. Kennedy of LeClaire and two sisters, Mrs. Margaret Disney of LeClaire and Mrs. C. B. Christiansen of Eugene, Ore.
The body was taken to the Halligan funeral home, where funeral services will be held at 10:30 a. m. Saturday. Burial will be in St. Marguerite’s cemetery.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Sunday Morning, March 17, 1935, page 6.


The Feehan Funeral

Funeral services for William Feehan, 64, a life resident of LeClaire, were held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the Halligan funeral home with the Rev. M. G. Morrin officiating. The St. Ambrose college choral club, directed by the Rev. Cletus Madsen, sang “Sanctus” from the mass. “Rosa Mystics,” by Vito Catnevail, and “O Esco Viatorum” by Jsaak.
Burial was in St. Marguerite’s cemetery. Bearers were Harold Brennan, William McKinney, Louis Morey, C.C. Thompson, William Suiter and Paul Brown.

The Daily Times, Saturday, March 16, 1935, page 4.

Death Notices

Feehan Funeral

Funeral services for William Feehan were held at 10 a.m. today at the Halligan funeral home, with the Rev. M. G. Morrin officiating. Burial was at St. Marguerite’s cemetery.
The St. Ambrose college choir, directed by the Rev. Cletus Madsen, sang “Sanctus” from the “Rosa Mystica” by Vito Carnevali and “O Esca Viatorium”, Jsaak.
Pallbearers were Harold Brennan, William McKinney, Louis Morey, C.C. Thompson, William Suiter and Paul Brown.


The Davenport Times, July 10, 1901, page 2.

LECLAIRE, July 10.-Fred Graham who is now engineer on the steamer Neptune, came down ahead of the boat last Saturday evening and spent a few days at home.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Monday evening, October 4, 1915, page 13.



Relatives received word Sunday of the death of Fred Graham at Seattle on Saturday, Oct. 2. The deceased was born in LeClaire, July 19, 1871, and lived there the greater part of his life, moving to Seattle ten years ago.
Besides his parents Mr. and Mrs. Charles Graham of LeClaire, he is survived by his wife and three sisters, Mrs. Frank Cunningham, of Auburn, Wash., Mrs. Henry LaFranz and Miss Charlotte Graham of Davenport.
It is not known whether the remains will be brought to LeClaire or not. Funeral arrangements will be made later.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Thursday Evening, October 7, 1915, page 15.


Graham Funeral

The funeral of Fred Graham, who passed away at Seattle, Wash., will be held from the home of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. C. F. Graham at LeClaire, Iowa, Sunday afternoon at 2 o’clock. Friends are invited to the services. Burial will be made in the family lot in LeClaire.

The Daily Times, October 4, 1915, page 7.



Relatives received word yesterday of the death of Fred Graham at Seattle on Saturday, Oct. 2.
Fred Graham was born in LeClaire July 19, 1971, and lived there the greater part of the time until he went to Seattle. Besides his widow he leaves his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Graham of LeClaire, Mrs. Frank Cunningham of Auburn, Wash., and Mrs. Henry LaFrenz and Miss Charlotte Graham of Davenport.
Funeral arrangements will be announced later.

The Daily Times, Wednesday, October 13, 1915, page 7


LeClaire, Ia., Oct. 13.--The body of Fred Graham whose death occurred recently at Seattle, Wash. Arrived in town Saturday evening at 6 o’clock, accompanied by his sister, Mrs. F. C. Cunningham and was taken to the home of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Graham, where funeral services were conducted Sunday afternoon at 2 o’clock by Rev. Jenne Underwood of Lyons, Ia. Burial took place in the LeClaire cemetery.
Relatives of the deceased acted as pallbearers.


1885 Iowa State Census, Scott County, LeClaire.

Goldsmith, Clarence 24 Engineer

1910 Census, Clinton County, Clinton City, Iowa

Goldsmith C. L. Head 38 Engineer Steamboat

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Tuesday Evening, April 28, 1925, page 3.


Native of LeClaire, Dies in Lyons, After Several Months’ Illness.

LeClaire, Ia., April 28.--Funeral services for Clarence Lee Goldsmith, native of this place, whose death occurred Sunday evening in his home in Lyons, Iowa, were held at 1:30 o’clock this afternoon in Lyons and the body taken here for interment in the LeClaire cemetery. Mr. Goldsmith’s death followed an eight month’s illness.
He was born April 20, 1865, in LeClaire and had been in Lyons the last quarter of a century, a marine engineer and pilot. For many years he had been state carpenter and electrician in the Orpheum theater, Clinton. Besides the widow, formerly Catherine Kall, he is survived by a son, Benjamin, and a daughter, Mrs. Isabelle Curest of New Haven, Conn. 
The Rev. Daniel Horgan of the Community church officiated at the funeral service.


1920 Census Davenport City 6 Ward Scott County Iowa

Goldsmith Frances Head 71 Mississippi River Pilot
Rosa Wife 51 Grocery
Harry Son 28 Clerical Work Arensal
Charles Grandson 1 9/12 none
Edna Daughter 20 none

The Davenport Democrat & Leader, Monday Evening, January 17, 1921, page 12.


F. E. Goldsmith, Well-Known Resident of Community, Is Summoned.

Francis E. Goldsmith, veteran river man and former well known resident of LeClaire, passed away at his home, 1312 Carey Avenue, this city, at 2:30 this morning.
He was one of the early river men in this community and along the river he had hosts of friends in towns where he had stopped at various times.
While a resident of LeClaire, he was prominent in its civic life and was a charter member of its Masonic lodge. He was also a member of Fraternal Aid Union, this city.
Since coming here, he has conducted a grocery store at his home on Carey Avenue.
He is survived by his wife; a son, H. F. Goldsmith, a daughter, Miss Edna Goldsmith; a step-son, S. F. Rossitar; a brother, Clarence L. Goldsmith, of Lyons, Iowa; and two sisters, both of Seattle, Wash.
The remains have been taken to the Horrigan funeral parlors, where they lie in state, and may be viewed by friends.
Funeral services will be held Tuesday afternoon at 2 o’clock from the Horrigan undertaking parlors; with Rev. C. R. Neel officiating. Interment will take place in the LeClaire cemetery.

The Daily Times, Monday, January 17, 1921, page 8.


Francis Emory Goldsmith, veteran steamboat man of Davenport and vicinity, died this morning at the home, 1312 Carey Avenue. He was born in LeClaire, Ia., December 16, 1848, and lived in that place until 1890 when he was united in marriage to Mrs. R. L. Rossiter at Canton, Mo. He was connected with the steamboat business for over 55 years and since his retirement from that line of endeavor, had conducted a grocery store in Davenport. He was a member of the Christian Churcu, of the Fraternal Aid Union, and a charter member of the Snow Lodge of Masons of LeClaire.
He is survived by his wife, a son, H. F., a daughter, Edna at home, and a step-son, S. F. Rossiter of Davenport. A brother Clarence L Goldsmith of Lyons, Ia., and two sisters of Seattle, Wash., also survive.
Funeral services will be held tomorrow at 2 o’clock from the Horrigan funeral parlors, Rev. C. R. Neel, pastor of the First Christian Church, to officiate. Interment will be in the LeClaire cemetery.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Wednesday Evening, January 19, 1921, page 15.


The Goldsmith Funeral.

Funeral services for the late Francis E. Goldsmith, who passed away at an early hour, Monday morning at the home, 1312 Carey Avenue, were held Tuesday afternoon from the A. E. Horrigan and son funeral parlors. Rev. C. R. Neel, pastor of the First Christian church officiated, and six intimate friends were pallbearers


The Daily Times, Friday, September 15,1933.

Dan Hanley, Father of Local Attorney, Dies after Illness

Dan Hanley, farther of Thomas J. Hanley and a brother of James A. Hanley, Davenport attorneys, died at 12:30 p.m. today at his home, 214 East Dennison Avenue. Twenty-five years ago, Mr. Hanley suffered a sun stroke, while employed as a marine engineer on the Mississippi river here and has been in failing health since that time.
Mr. Hanley was born on Nov. 15, 1854, in Ohio, and came to LeClaire with his family when a child, moving to Davenport in 1892, where he has since resided. On Nov. 15, 1898, he was married to Miss Laura Alice Black and she preceded him in death on July 24, 1922. For many years Mr. Hanley was employed as a marine engineer on various boats on the Mississippi. His ill health forced his retirement 25 years ago.
Surviving are his son, Thomas J. Hanley, one brother James A. Hanley, and one sister Mrs. C. C. Rolf, all of Davenport.
The body was taken to the Alan Clapp mortuary, where funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday. Burial will be in Oakdale cemetery.

Davenport Democrat and Leader, Friday, September 15, 1933, page 13.

Daniel R. Hanley

Daniel R. Hanley, brother of J. A. Hanley, Davenport attorney, and a resident here the last 41 years, died at 12:30 o’clock this afternoon at his home, 214 Dennison avenue. His death followed a long illness.
Born in Ohio, Nov, 15, 1854, the family came to LeClaire when he was a child, and there he attended school. He came to Davenport in 1892, and here, Nov. 15, 1898, he married Miss Laura Alice Black. Her death occurred July 24, 1922.
From early manhood Mr. Hanley was a marine engineer, but ill health forced him to retire about 25 years ago. Surviving, besides his brother, are a son, Thomas J. Hanley of Davenport, and a sister, Mrs. C.C. Rolfs, also of Davenport.
The body was removed to the Alan Clapp mortuary, and funeral services will be held in the chapel there at 2 p. m. Sunday. Burial will be in Oakdale cemetery.

The Davenport Democrat and Leader, Monday, September 18, 1933, page 13.

The Hanley Funeral

Funeral services for Daniel R. Hanley were held at 2 p. m. Sunday at the Alan Clapp mortuary chapel. The Rev. B. F. Martin officiated at the chapel and at the grave in Oakdale cemetery.
The bearers were F. J. McLaughlin, R. N. Ingelson, Mel Foster, H. K. Fox, Herb Fennell and Dr. A. C. Sorenson.


1880 Census Town of LeClaire, Scott County, Iowa

Horton Henry H Head 41 Martine Engineer
Eliza H Wife 34 Housekeeping
Belle S Dau 12 At School
George W Son 8 At School

Davenport Democrat, Tuesday, December 23, 1884, page 1.



An only son of Henry Horton, first engineer on Lindsay & Phelps’ rafter, Eclipse, is very low with quick 
Consumption, and his demise is only a matter of brief time. Mr. H., who has been at work in Springfield, has been sent for. The earnest sympathy of their friends and neighbors is with the family in this their horrible trial. The boy who has thus been an suddenly changed from apparently ruddy health to incurable disease, is about 12 years old. J.A. D.

But the boy survived and went on to became an engineer like his father, Henry.

The Davenport Daily Republican, July 17, 1901, page 7.

The New Engineer on the “J. S.”

LeClaire Advance: “George Horton is now engineer on the new steamer J. S., the man who held that position at the time of the accident on the rapids being ‘passed up’ for not following a signal given him by the pilot, which was the main cause of the disaster. It is noticed that as soon as a LeClaire boy got hold of the engines the boat began making better time immediately. She arrived on time Monday morning and as soon as George get toughly acquainted with her she will have no difficulty in keeping up her run. The other engineer has returned to his Jeffersonville home.

Morning Democrat, Thursday, October 2, 1952, page 18.

Deaths and Funeral Announcements



Funeral services for George W. Horton, 81, of 2318 Eighteenth street B, who died Wednesday in Mercy Hospital after a week’s illness, will be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday in the Esterdahl chapel. The Rev. Albert Glaspell will officiate, and burial will be in the Glendale cemetery in LeClaire, Ia.
Born Sept. 5, 1871, in LeClaire, Mr. Horton married Marie Headley in Davenport Nov. 2, 1899. He was electrical engineer of the Iowa-Illinois Gas & Electric Co., retiring in 1937 after 32 years with the company. He was a member of the Rock Island Masons, Lodge No. 658, AF & AM.
Survivors include a daughter, Mrs. George Till, Davenport, and a niece, Mrs. William Mayo, Des Moines. His wife died July 28, 1952.

The Daily Times, Wednesday, October 1, 1952, page 7-B.



George W. Horton, 81, of 2318 Eighteenth street B, Moline, died today at Davenport Mercy hospital following a week of illness.
Funeral services will be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Esterdahl chapel with the Rev. Albert Glastell conciliating. Burial will be in the Glendale cemetery at LeClaire, Ia.
Mr. Horton was born Sept. 5, 1871 in LeClaire. He married Marie Headley in Davenport Nov. 9, 1899. An electrical engineer for the Iowa-Illinois Gas & Electric Gas & Electric Co., Mr. Horton retired in 1937 after 32 years with the company. He was a member of the Rock Island Masons, Lodge No. 658, AF & AM.
Surviving are a daughter, Mrs. George Till of Davenport, and a niece, Mrs. William Mayo of Des Moines. His wife died July 28, 1952.
Friends may call at Esterddahl chapel after 7 p.m. today.

The Daily Times, Saturday, October 4, 1952, page 3-B.


Horton Funeral

Funeral services for George Horton, 2318 Eighteen street B who died Wednesday in Mercy Hospital, Davenport were held Friday at 1:30 p.m. from the Esterdahl chapel. Rev. Albert Glaspell, Davenport, officiated and Mrs. Walter Mogier was soloist and Mrs. Titus Samuelson, accompanist.
Pallbearers were Lynn Folrath, Lee Fulrath, Frank Johnson, Victor Van Catap, Edward Kjellstrand, and Glenn Swenmunson.
Burial was in Glendale cemetery, LeClaire, Ia.

Davenport Sunday Democrat, August 29, 1897, page 1.
Capt. Laycock the only River Man Here Who Rides a Wheel.

It is claimed that Capt. John H. Laycock, of the Geo. M. Waters, is the only thoroughbred river man here who can navigate a bicycle. He rides a regular make, with the bucket set close together, capable of making seven miles an hour up the river against a head wind, and giving almost no shake at all, unless on some of the paving in this city. Capt. Laycock says he can learn the river with one eye tied behind him, but it takes a good many trips over some of our improved streets to get all the crossing marks down fine, and learn where the rocks lie. He admits that he doesn’t like to run many of them after night without a good light ahead. There are others who endorse his views.
The only thing he thinks should be radically changed in the realm of bicycle navigation is in the direction of the adoption of the national masters’ and pilots’ rules, or some modification of them, well adapted to cruising ashore. He says when he has a redheaded woman with a yellow veil on a blue wheel bearing down on him on the starboard side, and meets a heavy team, towing about four thousand feet of green lumber, on the larboard side, and the woman and the blue wheel get the wabbles, and it is a question whether she means to ride into him, or fall down and let him sail over her, the need for some understanding on this point is painfully apparent. He rather inclines to the opinion that a bicyclist ought to be called upon to undergo inspection and examination, and hold regular papers before he has the run of the channel.


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