This description of a home located on Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois, is part of a series on the unique housing found on the installation. Information was provided by a joint effort the History Office of the U.S. Army Sustainment Command and the Welcome Club at Rock Island Arsenal.
General Thomas Jackson Rodman’s plan for Rock Arsenal called for the construction of ten large stone manufacturing shops which would be supplemented by various administrative, residential, and storage facilities. All would have similar Greek Revival architecture.
In 1888, the arsenal received funds from Congress to construct a headquarters. It was one of the last buildings erected under the scope of Rodman’s plan. This building was the first permanent structure at the Arsenal designed solely for administration purposes.
The building is now known as Building 360 and was constructed of Joliet limestone. It is situated west of the north row of shops lining Main Avenue (now known as Rodman Avenue). Though in a Greek Revival style, it shows an influence of Richardsonian Romanesque style in the asymmetrical massing and use of round-arched window openings for three pairs of windows.
Building 360 served as headquarters for Rock Island Arsenal from 1889 to 1922. It housed the offices of the post commander and his assisting officers, and also many other departments, including the mail and finance sections. During the time Building 360 served as headquarters, eight commanding officers ran the arsenal from its offices.
During the severe decline in military activity following World War I, the Arsenal consolidated its manufacturing processes largely into Building 220 and moved its headquarters to the building next to it. Building 360 sat empty or was used for storage through most of the 1920s and 1930s.
In 1934, the Arsenal received funding to convert this building to family housing. RIA Public Works Administration employees may well have done the conversion.
With the reorganization of buildings on Rock Island Arsenal in 2004, these quarters were returned to administrative usage and are no longer used as private residences.