History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/George Davenport
GEORGE DAVENPORT, in whose honor the city of Davenport was named, was born in England in 1783. He was a sailor in his youth and coming to New York in 1804 enlisted in the army and served ten years. In the spring of 1816 he was with the expedition under Colonel Lawrence which was sent to Rock Island to build a fort. After he was discharged from the army he engaged in trade with the Indians and in a few years built up a profitable business. In 1825 a post-office was established at Rock Island of which Mr. Davenport was appointed postmaster. In 1826 he became a member and agent of the American Fur Company and had charge of its business from the Iowa to the Turkey River. In the Black Hawk War he was quartermaster with the rank of colonel. He had built a residence on the lower part of Rock Island near the old fort and in 1835 in company with six others purchased a large tract of land on the Iowa side of the Mississippi River, opposite the island. Here a town was platted which was called Davenport. In 1842 he rendered the Government valuable service in assisting Governor Chambers in negotiating a treaty for the purchase of Iowa lands from the Sac and Fox Indians. On the Fourth of July, 1845, while alone in his house, Colonel Davenport was robbed and murdered. Three of the murderers were convicted and executed for the crime.