Rock Island Arsenal, Building No. 53, North Avenue North of Midpoint, Rock Island, Rock Island County, IL
Photo Caption Pages
North Avenue North of Midpoint, Rock Island, IL
Find maps of Rock Island, IL
Documentation compiled after 1968.
Survey number HAER IL-20-M
Building/structure dates: 1868 initial construction
Building/structure dates: 1875 subsequent work
Building/structure dates: 1958 subsequent work
National Register Number: 69000057
Significance: After taking command of Rock Island Arsenal in 1865, General Thomas Jefferson Rodman devised a master plan for the installation calling for the construction of ten large manufacturing shops, five on each side of the island's major east-west thoroughfare. These manufacturing structures were supplemented by a variety of administrative, residential, maintenance, storage, and utility buildings. Forming a cohesive architectural statement that is unique among Midwest government installations, the Rodman plan buildings are the administrative and technological core of Rock Island Arsenal, one of only two "old-line, nineteenth-century arsenals still in operation for munitions production. The buildings are vital for understanding the history of American ordnance development and manufacture from the Spanish American War to the present. Located just north of the central manufacturing shops, the Reservoir was the first permanent buildings erected under the Rodman plan. Designed by Rodman, it was completed in 1869 and remained in use for over a century, distributing water through an underground pipe system to administrative, manufacturing, and residential structures. The Reservoir is part of the Rock Island Arsenal National Register Historic District.
Rodman, Gen. Thomas Jefferson
Historic American Engineering Record (Library of Congress)
1. Overall view; looking W.
2. Detail view of entrance, looking NE.
3. Photograph of a photograph in possession of Rock Island Arsenal Historical Office. LOOKING NORTH; BUILDING IS SHOWN WITH ORIGINAL COPING. DATED C. 1873.
4. Photograph of a photograph in possession of Rock Island Arsenal Historical Office. LOOKING NORTH AFTER ADDITION OF CONICAL ROOF. ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED 1887.
5. Photograph of line drawing in possession of Engineering Plans and Services Division, Rock Island Arsenal. PLAN, ELEVATION, AND SECTION, 1874; TRACING, 1935.
Back to Rock Island, Illinois