by Jessica Waytenick •

Address: Hampton Interpretive Center, 251 S. State Ave. in Hampton, Illinois
The Village of Hampton is located just north of East Moline and four miles south of Illinois Route 80 (Exit #1) on Route 84.
Phone: 309-755-8398
Web Site:
Media Contact: Rebecca Hall, 309-755-8398 or
What's New:

  • Hike on the newly-constructed bluebird trail.

The Village of Hampton is the oldest and most picturesque of the small communities just north of the Quad Cities. From its beginning in 1828, settlers were drawn to this river-side community. Today, Hampton's vistas and its historic attractions make it one of the most popular areas on the Great River Trail. The Great River Trail begins in Rock Island, Illinois, and continues 62 miles to Savanna, Illinois.

In Heritage Park, on the southern end of the village are 32 acres of rolling land, environmentally engineered to preserve the native prairie plants. This park is also the home of the Hampton Interpretive Center that houses educational displays and one of the oldest Gingko trees in America.

The Historical Society has re-created the Brettun & Black Mercantile Store as it appeared in 1849 when it was a riverboat stop and later, a stop for the Galena Stagecoach. The Museum is open weekend afternoons from May through October or at any time for group tours by calling Beverly Coder, Curator at 309-755-6265. On the third weekend in September, the Brettun & Black Museum is the site of the annual Apple Festival from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Each year the festival draws so many apple dumpling lovers that the Historical Society has to take orders to insure availability! Society members and the best cooks in the area make cakes, cookies, pies of all flavors plus caramel apples and apple dumplings by the thousands just to satisfy festival-goers.

Outdoor enthusiasts flock to Hampton for Bald Eagle counting and watching throughout the winter. Popular places with observers are Lock and Dam 14, Fisherman's Corner Recreation area, Illiniwek Park, and Heritage Park.

Each Memorial Day, a brief service beginning at 10 a.m. is held in front of the Soldier's Monument (518 First Avenue) with the river as a back drop. Flowers are brought or provided to attendees who then make participate in a procession down to the riverbank. Here the moving ceremony continues with a few words given commemorating those that lost their lives at sea. Flowers are thrown on the waters in patriotic tribute. Finally gathering at the steps of the Brettun & Black Museum a few steps from the river, a veterans' roll call is read to a drum roll and taps played after which the Museum opens for the season with tours and refreshments.

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