On July 19, 1814, a pro-British band of Sauk Indians led by Black Hawk attacked a force of United States regulars and rangers under Lieutenant John Campbell. The Americans were defeated, with the loss of sixteen American lives.
Campbell’s Island State Memorial consists of a North Carolina granite monument dedicated in 1908, in a mini-park overlooking the river. A bronze plaque on the monument base, attributed to sculptor A. L. Van der Berghen, commemorates the battle. The plaque foreground depicts two soldiers with rifles and a woman comforting a wounded soldier. In the background are several soldiers and a boat, with Native American warriors emerging from trees across the river. The other three sides of the base carry Wisconsin red granite tablets describing the memorial’s history.
A low concrete wall surrounds the monument, with an inner walk. A “peace garden” contains four concrete benches, arranged in a “Sacred Circle” design and decorated with mosaic tiles in Sauk and Mesquakie artistic motifs. Designed by area artist Kunhild Blacklock and dedicated in 1998, the garden was funded by a grant through the River Action Committee of the Quad Cities.