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Take me to the River


July 2, 2013


Dixon, IL


What to John Deere and Ronald Reagan have in common? The Dixon, Illinois area, named after the rope ferry operator during the 1830’s, has served as their hometown for a number of years. When I arrived, all the campgrounds were closed because of a recent flood, a reminder of the power of the Rock River which took 45 lives on May 4, 1873 when the city had gathered on the Truesdell Bridge to watch a baptism. John Deere settled in the area about the same time Dixon was manning the ferry, but later relocated his business to Moline, IL. Ronald Reagan as a teenager served as a lifeguard for the same River that had earlier taken Dixon citizens lives.


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