Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois
The Mississippi River Visitor Center is located on the Rock Island Arsenal in Rock Island, Illinois at Locks & Dam 15, overlooking the Upper Mississippi River. Since the early 1800's the Corps of Engineers has been instrumental in making the river navigable for both commercial and recreational vessels. From January to March each year visitors come from all around to see the many Bald Eagles that flock to the locks and dams on the Mississippi during the winter months to feed. In early spring the river opens to commercial navigation. From April through mid December visitors from around the world come to watch boats pass through the locks.
The visitor center welcomes over 60,000 people annually and is handicap accessible. In addition to providing lock and dam tours during the summer months, rangers also offer a wide range of programs to the local community.
Click here to visit our directions page for specific information on finding our visitor center. Security personnel will meet you at the gate, and may inspect your vehicle and ask for picture ID for persons over 16 years of age. Parking is available in the visitor center parking lot. Foreign visitors should contact the visitor center before visiting.
Arsenal Island security requires that motor coach and other tours require two weeks advance notice. No motor coaches carrying luggage will be allowed access to Arsenal Island.