Rock Island Arsenal staff hosts tour of Quarters One on Saturday

Published: Mar. 12, 2023 at 10:34 AM CDT
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Rock Island, Ill. (KWQC) - Staff members on the Rock Island Arsenal hosted a tour on Saturday of one of the oldest buildings on the Island, Quarters One.

The building is a 20,000-square-foot home and is the second largest house in the federal inventory behind only the White House.

Thirty-eight different senior officers assigned to Rock Island have called Quarters One Home.

Construction began on the home in 1869 and was finished by Brigadier General Thomas J. Rodman in 1871.

“A lot of the pieces that are in it are still originals,” Mark Struve, Assistant Historian for Army Sustainment Command said. “We have the original floors, we have some original furniture that’s still in the house so, there’s a lot of things here that are, make it very unique, very interesting.”

Struve says there are many things that make this home so special compared to others on the Island.

“The decorative nature of the building and its age being one of the oldest, not quite the oldest, but one of the oldest, on the installation makes it a bit of a charming piece,” Struve said. “As well as the beautiful grounds and its location.”

Recreation Specialist Anna Winters said Quarters One has special meaning, not only to the Arsenal but the entire community.

“I think Quarters One is a little hidden gem that people don’t know about,” Winters said. “And then once people know about it, we’ve had people come back numerous times, do the tours, and then they want to use it for events and stuff so, it’s like a little hidden treasure.”

Over 150 years old, Quarters One still has a certain effect on tourists.

“I think everybody that actually comes into the building falls in love with it all over again,” Struve said. “They see how beautiful and impressive it is on the outside, they see how beautiful it still is on the inside.”

“It’s impressive to have something like this in the area where you can kind of take a walk-through time and a walk-through history and it really kind of speaks to a lot of the stuff, we still do at Rock Island Arsenal today,” Struve said.

The first event to take place in Quarters One was the funeral of General Rodman who passed away on June 7, 1871.