Eldridge, Iowa

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Eldridge is a city in Scott County, Iowa, United States. The population was 4,159 at the 2000 census; a census conducted in 2009 counted 5,371 residents.[2] Eldridge is a part of the Quad Cities metropolitan area.

Contents

Geography

Eldridge is located at 41°38′55″N 90°34′53″W / 41.64861°N 90.58139°W / 41.64861; -90.58139 (41.648697, -90.581492)[3]. It is located north of Davenport along U.S. Route 61.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 9.4 square miles (24.3 km²), all of it land.

History

Jacob M. Eldridge, the city's namesake, arrived in central Scott County in 1846, having purchased land for $1.25 per acre. Immigrants from Germany soon followed, and northern Scott County slowly began to develop. Railroads were developed during the 1860s, bringing more settlers. Eldridge Junction, built on land donated by Jacob Eldridge, was incorporated on July 2, 1871. A post office and a Presbyterian church were soon built.

Eldridge faced several challenges during its early years. The railroad faltered financially during the 1880s and was re-located to Oxford Junction, while a smallpox epidemic several years later was said to have totally isolated the city. A fire heavily damaged the city's business district in 1904, and in 1918 a tornado of unknown strength heavily damaged or destroyed several residences and the church, and killed one person. Each time, the city recovered, and the farming community maintained its status as a grain and livestock shipping center.

The city began growing in population during the 1950s, starting with the formation of the Scott County Library System (a countywide network of libraries serving smaller communities in the area) in 1950, and the North Scott Community School District in 1956. By the late 1960s, the population had grown to more than 1,000 residents, and with the creation of several industrial parks to encourage new business development, the city continued to grow.

Education

Eldridge hosts three of the seven public schools in the North Scott Community School District, which has its administrative offices there as well. The North Scott High School, North Scott Junior High and Ed White Elementary School are in Eldridge. The other four elementary schools in the district are in the outlying communities of Donahue, Long Grove, Park View and Princeton.

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