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How the Walcott Trust and Savings Bank, 101 West Bryant, looks today. With over 75 years of service, the original structure has been renovated but operations remain in the original 1877 buidling.
With more than 150 years of heritage, Walcott retains its small-town charm just a stone's throw from the Quad-Cities.
Carol Snay, who has lived in Walcott most of her life, said she's enjoyed seeing the town grow and change over the years. "I was there for the centennial. I was a teenager for the 100th celebration. I remember a big parade."
Since then, the town has celebrated its 150th anniversary.
Ms. Snay said she's proud of her roots and enjoys living in a town that prides itself on being friendly and helpful. "I'm thankful that I grew up here, that I went to school here and that I still live here. It's home."
She said that when she was born, the town had only about 500 residents, and the population has more than tripled since then, decreasing some of Walcott's small-town intimacy.
"Growing up here as a kid, you knew everybody who lived in each and every house," Ms. Snay said. "That's not the case anymore. You don't know everybody that lives in every house. You don't know every resident by name."
Part of that disconnect is because Walcott has become what Ms. Snay and others call a "bedroom community." Like other outlying towns in the Quad-Cities area, many residents call the town home, but travel elsewhere for employment, entertainment, shopping and other activities.
Gerry Meyer, who has lived in Walcott 45 years, said the town thrived in the early 1900s before becoming a "bedroom community." She said in its early days, people and businesses were attracted to the area because it was a major water stop for passing steam engines that needed to refill before continuing on their routes.
Once a bustling community, Ms. Meyer said the number of businesses in Walcott has declined drastically.
"We lost three grocery stores, a meat market, car dealerships, implementation dealerships. Several other businesses have come and gone since I've lived in this town."
While the town may not offer a wide array of consumer options, Ms. Meyer said its proximity to the Quad-Cities area allows residents to live a quiet home life while enjoying all the amenities of nearby cities.
"We don't have the crime problems that Davenport has, yet we are close enough to take up the good things Davenport has to offer."
Mayor Kristal Koberg-Schaefer agreed Walcott offers a slower-paced environment for residents who don't want to give up the conveniences offered by larger metropolitans. "We can offer the access to I-80 with small town-benefits."
Despite many businesses having left over time, Mayor Koberg-Schaefer said the town is growing at a steady pace. There are new subdivisions and a new 40-room assisted-living facility.
Although much has changed, Walcott school principal Erica Goldstone said the school continues to have great educators and students.
In celebration of its 150th anniversary, Ms. Goldstone said past and present students, parents and staff members have created a commemorative cookbook. "It will be a great opportunity for people to share in some special recipes and have some great eating."
The town's annual Walcott Days also brings the community together with pie-baking contests, a large parade, tractor pulls, dancing, crafts and other celebration favorites.