By U.S. ArmyApril 12, 2019
Overlooking Locks and Dam 15, the Mississippi Visitor Center is operated by the Rock Island District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The center's lookout provides an excellent vantage point to observe and learn about the function of the lock and dam system on the Upper Mississippi, the operation of the Government Bridge, and the importance of barge traffic on the river.
From the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
The Mississippi River Visitor Center is located on Rock Island Arsenal at Locks and Dam 15, overlooking the Upper Mississippi River. Since the early 1800s, 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 to see the many bald eagles that flock to the 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 come to watch boats pass through the locks.
The visitor center welcomes over 30,000 people annually and is handicapped- accessible. In addition to providing lock and dam tours, rangers also offer a wide range of programs to the local community.
From the indoor observation area or outside observation deck, you can watch pilots skillfully maneuver tons of cargo through the lock. At the visitor center, you can get to know the Upper Mississippi during our short movie, or look at our aquarium and interactive displays. Park rangers are available to answer questions and show you around.