by Jessica Waytenick • November 13, 2017

NOVEMBER 2017 Quad Cities – The German American Heritage Center (GAHC) and the Creative Arts Academy (CAA) have once again teamed up to bring an exciting project and exhibit to the Quad Cities.  Under the direction of staff from the GAHC and the CAA, over 50 seventh graders of the Creative Arts Academy utilized their skills and worked together to create a professional museum exhibit. 

The students have been crafting the exhibit since late August and are excited to unveil this year's exhibit “A Look in the Toy Chest: Toys Through Time”.  The exhibit will be open at the German American Heritage Center, 712 West 2nd Street in Davenport, Iowa, from November 11, 2017, to January 7, 2018.

The exhibit focuses on the evolution of play through the decades, and the toys that defined the eras. From 1900 to present day, see what toys made it to the list as the most important and defining of that decade.  Maybe your favorite toy made the list?

The entirety of the exhibit, from concept to installation, is completely student-driven.  See the hard work and creativity of local students in creating their project for the public!

Permanent Exhibit

The German American Heritage Center’s interactive, audio-visual, intergenerational permanent exhibit takes visitors on an exploration of what it was like to be an immigrant to the Quad Cities area in the 1800s. 

The exhibit begins at an era 2,000 years before Germany unified.  The exhibit progresses through several interactive and intergenerational experiences from immigrants’ journey by sea, train and foot, to their final destination at the German American Heritage Center (GAHC), which was originally a very busy hotel for thousands of immigrants in the 1860s.  The second half of the exhibit shows contributions to the region by immigrants, and highlights daily life, from recreation, family life, religion and organizations.

Built around the late 1860s, the GAHC location appears to have had its earliest history in the hostelry enterprise.  Around 1872, the thirty-room hotel was a popular spot for many immigrants, visitors, and farmers who came to Davenport.  Its German character as a “Gast Haus” lasted well into the early years of the twentieth century.  This building is the last remaining immigrant hotel of the 1800s in the region, one of six surviving immigrant hotels in the country, and is on the National Register of Historic Places.         

GAHC Hours/Admission
The German American Heritage Center is open Tuesday-Saturday 10 am-4 pm and Sunday 12-4 pm.  Admission is $5 adults; $4 for ages 60 and up; $3 for ages 6-17.  For more information, visit or call 563-322-8844.  The German American Heritage Center is located at 712 West Second Street, Davenport, Iowa.

Discover these and many more marvels on the Mississippi River in the Quad Cities.  Contact the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau at 800-747-7800 or visit their website at

The Quad Cities is located on the Mississippi River and is made up of the riverfront cities of Davenport and Bettendorf in Iowa, and Moline, East Moline and Rock Island in Illinois.  The area is just a 2-½ hour drive from Des Moines, Iowa, and Chicago, Illinois. It is easily accessible via I-80, I-74, I-88 and several major state highways.

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German American Heritage Center Media Contact: Kyle Dickson, 563-322-8844 or

Photos & Media Trips: For High-res exhibit photos or for information about media tours, please contact Jessica Waytenick at the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau at 800-747-7800 Ext. 827 or

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