In 1907 The Hennepin Canal (what many referred to as a wide ditch of worthless water) was connected to the Rock River as a means to haul grain and other items back and forth from the larger towns of Sterling and Rock Falls, Il to the smaller town of Tampico about 20 miles away.
This caused great ecxitement in all three towns!
Here is a picture thought to have been taken on the opening day. Note the Gibson Girl hairstyles and vintage clothing.
I am not sure of the date that the canal was closed- I know that my grandfather worked on this very canal in the 1920's -but it does not appear to have been as successful as they had planned on. My Mom's house is not far from the big gates that now keep the Rock River from flowing into the Hennepin Feeder canal.