Damage to floor joists in the Colonel Davenport House was not as wide-ranging as feared when the problem was discovered in mid-March.

Jessica Waytenick, the vice president of the foundation that preserves and maintains the historic home on Arsenal Island, said that although members first thought they might have to launch a fundraiser to get the problem fixed, the work might be covered for about $5,000.

And that amount already has been donated by a foundation member-couple who were going to include it in their will, but decided to give it early because of the immediate need, Waytenick said.

That is not to say the foundation doesn't need money. Fundraising is ongoing for maintenance of the 1833-34 house and updating the exhibit.

In that vein, the foundation's third annual Croquet Tournament fundraiser will be Saturday, Aug. 23.

New this year are shorter courts for faster play and "Alice in Wonderland" characters from Davenport's Junior Theatre to play with children in a kid-size version of croquet as well as pose for pictures.

As in past years, croquet equipment will be provided. Hors d'oeuvres, complimentary wine tasting provided by Creekside Vineyards Winery in Coal Valley and free tours of the Colonel Davenport House are also part of the package.

Visitors to the house will see several recent changes. Foremost is reconstruction of the home's East Wing that was razed years ago because it had fallen into disrepair. There's not much in it yet, but it is finished. The cost was about $35,000, including in-kind donations of labor and materials. 

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Visitors also will find a historic board game aimed at children called "Steering the Rapids" in which players move forward or backward according to what their card says, plus a refreshed video that tells the story of Col. Davenport.

George Davenport arrived in Rock Island during 1816 with the U.S. Army to establish Fort Armstrong. He became a fur trader and one of the founders of the city that bears his name. He was shot in his Federal-style home on July 4, 1845, by robbers looking for gold. He died the next day.

Damage to the home's floor joists happened over the winter when leaking water soaked already-weakened wood, causing it to pull away from the exterior wall.

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