The lighter side of real estate

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely Accurate

If your arms look like a body builder’s from all the sandbagging you did over the summer, if you’re turned around because the river is south of you instead of to the east, or if you have brain freeze from eating your Mint Chipper too fast, congratulations. You’re in Davenport.

Leah McBride Mensching

15 articles, 0 comments

1. It’s One-Fourth Of The Quad Cities (Or A Fifth Of The Quint Cities)

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Flickr user Alan Light

Davenport is the largest of the Quad Cities, but no one can quite agree on which four cities make up the Quad Cities. On the Iowa side, it’s Davenport and Bettendorf, which is considered a suburb of Davenport. But on the Illinois side things get a little confusing, with Rock Island and Moline completing the four; however, East Moline is left out. Ignoring a large portion of the grouping of cities doesn’t sit well with many, who call it the Quint Cities instead.

2. They Dig Heavy Machinery

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Flickr user tmaull

Davenport is home to a manufacturer synonymous with farming and construction. Deere & Company’s Davenport Works location manufactures dump trucks, four-wheel-drive loaders, motor graders, felling heads, wheeled feller bunchers, log skidders and cabs. Try saying that three times fast.

3. Sandbagging Is A Yearly Activity

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Wikipedia

The Mississippi River’s water level rises and falls over the course of the year, and always floods to varying degrees during the summer. However, it’s not really considered to be a flood year if they don’t sandbag above River Drive.

4. They Toot Their Own Horns

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Wikipedia

Davenport is the hometown of jazz legend Leon Bismark “Bix” Beiderbecke, who, along with Louis Armstrong and Muggsy Spanier, was one of the most influential jazz soloists of the 1920s. Bix played the cornet and piano, and helped invent the jazz ballad style. His mysterious death at the young age of 28, thought to have been brought on by poor health and alcoholism, has enshrined him forever as one of the saints of jazz.

5. They Don’t Make Davenports Here

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Wikimedia Commons

No, the name “Davenport” doesn’t come from a brand of sofa. The area was originally home to the Sauk, Meskwaki and Ho-Chunk native people, who were forced to leave their land following the Black Hawk War. The area was then bought for $640,000, or about 11 cents an acre. The Sauk Chief Keokuk gave a portion of the land to Marguerite LeClaire, the granddaughter of a Sauk chief. Her husband, Antoine LeClaire, who was half native, served as the translator for the deal. Antoine LeClaire officially established Davenport in 1836, and named the town after his friend Colonel George Davenport, a frontiersman, trader and U.S. Army officer.

6. Is This Heaven? No, It’s A Truck Stop.

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Flickr user H. Michael Miley

It’s big, it’s kitschy, it’s the Iowa 80 Truckstop, and it’s amazing. Originally built in 1964, the truck stop was a small Standard Oil station next to an only partially finished Interstate 80, just west of Davenport. Today, it is the largest truck stop in the world, is owned by the original founder, has been expanded and remodeled 28 times, and is roughly the size of a couple of football fields. The truck stop has a 300-seat restaurant, a movie theater, a gift shop, a food court, a coffee shop, laundry facilities, a dentist, a barber shop, a chiropractor, a workout room, a trucker’s TV lounge, private showers, a Verizon store kiosk, a convenience store, and much more – even a Dogomat Pet Wash. It also hosts an annual Truckers Jamboree every July. Oh yeah, and you can buy gas and diesel there too. How could you not love a place where you can go out to eat, get a haircut, have your back adjusted, see a movie, give Fido a bath, shop for souvenirs and then fill up your semi with diesel before continuing on to Cheyenne?

7. Understanding Directions May Require A Map

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Wikipedia

The Quad Cities are situated next to the only bend in the Mississippi River where the river flows east to west. Although this is a fun little fact, it can also confuse visitors asking for directions, because locals often explain location based on whether things are toward the river or away from it. Figge Art Museum, for example, is located on West 2nd Street, a couple of blocks away from the water’s edge, just a block north of East River Drive, which is also north of the water, on the west side of the river. Huh?

8. They’re Warriors

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Flickr user Joseph Novak

The largest employer in the Quad Cities is Rock Island Arsenal, the largest government-owned weapons manufacturing arsenal in the country. It is a National Historic Landmark that has been actively making military equipment and ordnance since the 1880s. During the Civil War, it was also a Union Army prison camp for captured Confederate soldiers.

9. They Need Ice Cream, Pizza And Tacos To Survive

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Flickr user Alan Light

When people move away or are gone for awhile, the first things they must have when they return are Rudy’s Tacos, Whitey’s Ice Cream, and either Harris Pizza or Happy Joe’s Pizza (pizza fans are polarized and feel very strongly about their favorite pizza place).

10. It’s D-Port

10 Davenport Stereotypes That Are Completely True

Source: Flickr user Cas

Sooner or later (and probably sooner), you will notice a lot of people refer to Davenport as D-Port. And, if you’re here for any length of time, or even just around people from here for awhile, you will too. So don’t fight it, just give in. Welcome to D-Port.

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posted on: February 4, 2014
70,803 views, 16 comments


  1. Adam

    Probably should say Rudy’s or Ganzos for Tacos much like Harris or Happy Joes

  2. Josh

    Bettendorf is actually not one of the four Quad Cities. The original four Quad Cities are Davenport, Rock Island, Moline, and East Moline. Bettendorf was not nearly the size of city it is today when the Quad City name came to be.

  3. michael hoogerwerf

    You are incorrect Pete Miles. The vice presidents quarters are the largest, square footage wise followed by quarters 1 at RIA. The actual living area of the white house( square footage) is 3rd

  4. tina

    Actually George Davenport was never a Colonel in the Army…it was only an honorary title bestowed upon him by the local Native Tribes as he was the only white man they trusted to do business with.

  5. Velma Davis

    I lived there, graduated HS from Davenport Central, went to Marycrest College and now in 50 years, this is the first time I have ever heard my hometown referred to as D-port! I want names!

  6. Craig Hillman

    That’s Whitey’s in IOWA CITY. :-(

  7. Anon

    The whole river running east-west thing is pretty cool. So cool, in fact, that it actually does that in a lot of places. Even more cool is down around St. Louis where it actually runs north for a bit.

  8. Jim

    It’s D-Pit. Not D-port.

  9. Emmie

    There are a whole lot of other local Mexican restaurants I would eat at before I’d eat at Rudy’s. And although I enjoy Harris and Happy Joe’s, there are a lot more pizza choices, too. And for those who question the “Quint” Cities, in the early-to-mid 60s we were referred to the Quint Cities more than the Quad Cities. I haven’t heard that reference for a few decades, however.

  10. Gino

    11. Davenport is named after a man who was screwing his step daughter.

  11. carmel

    Thanks for sharing this , I’m still stuck on the Quint not Quad…lol and D-Port is my home town..

  12. Bill

    Good list, but I have to correct you: Bix never played a “coronet,” which is a small crown, and would be quite an impossible object from which to make music. Instead, Bix played the CORNET, which is like a slightly smaller trumpet but with a conical bore and more mellow tone. He most certainly had a problem with drinking too much alcohol. It should be pointed out that when most people hear the name Bix they likely actually think of the Bix 7 mile race here that brings runners from all over the world.

  13. Reid

    Don’t forget Silvis!! That makes it the SexCities!!

  14. Jeanne

    I seem to remember in my younger years we were the tri-cities, but I can remember which ones. I think Davenport, Rock Island & Moline.

  15. Shawn

    In my whole life, I have never heard anybody refer to it as D-port, or the Quint Cities.

  16. Shawn

    Nobody calls it D-Port. We’re not D-ouches.


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