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732 Gaines Street Davenport IA 52802

The Dispatch and The Rock Island Argus

 Posted online: July 28, 2006 11:31 AM  qconline.com
Print publication date: August 1, 2006

Secondhand history

By Jane Jackson, jacksonj@qconline.com

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Photo: John Greenwood
Gateway Redevelopment Group president Jack Haberman displays the progress made in the front entry of The Architectural Rescue Shop at the Jipp, a store that will eventually sell donated vintage doors, woodwork, hardware, glass windows and other gently used architectural items to people rehabbing their homes. Once the former grocery store at 732 Gaines St. in Davenport is completely restored and operational, proceeds will go to restoring and preserving Davenport homes in the Hamburg Historic District.
More photos from this shoot

DAVENPORT - A front entrance once covered with bricks has been replaced by an old, wood door with recycled glass windows. A collapsed floor inside the building has been rebuilt.

Gateway Redevelopment Group (GRG) president Jack Haberman and countless volunteers have been working two years to breathe new life into the former grocery store at 732 Gaines, but the group needs $12,000 to finish construction.

The non-profit corporation hopes to open the Architectural Rescue Shop at the Jipp by the end of the year. The shop will sell donated antique doors, hardware, glass windows, and other fixtures to home-rehab enthusiasts, with proceeds going to help restore and preserve homes in the Hamburg Historic District.

The shop will save those materials from going to the landfill, said Mr. Haberman, adding that he wanted to open the shop in September 2005, but lack of funding slowed the project.

The GRG works with neighbors, volunteers and various funding sources to save abandoned buildings in the Hamburg Historic District, which runs from West 5th to West 9th streets and from Ripley to Vine streets in West Davenport.

Phase One of the project began in 2004. The group raised more than $15,000, $7,500 of that from neighbors and supporters, $2,500 from a Riverboat Development Authority grant, $5,500 from the State Historical Society of Iowa and donations from local businesses, according to Mr. Haberman and the group's Web site, www.grgdavenport.org.

Area businesses donated materials, and Phase One -- rebuilding the collapsed floor, removing collapsed parts of the building, installing a new foundation, and repairing the northeast brick corner column -- was completed in November 2004.

For Phase Two, Gateway received a $35,000 restoration grant from the Riverboat Development Authority and a $49,150 Historic Site Preservation Grant. They requested $12,000 from the Scott County Regional Authority, but were turned down, Mr. Haberman said.

Phase Two work includes repairing the ceiling, installing plumbing, electric and heating, and repairing a brick wall in the back of the building. The third and final phase is to open the shop and start salvage work of building materials, according to Mr. Haberman.


This year, the group will receive $24,750 from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources' Solid Waste Alternative Program, which works to reduce the amount of solid waste created through recycling, education and other special projects, according to the DNR Web site.

The money will be used to buy a truck for salvage operations, tools and marketing/promotions, Mr. Haberman said. IBM also donated two new computers to the shop.

A volunteer is working to post pictures and information about the donations on their Web site. The items will be displayed within four months.

Mr. Haberman said the building is worth saving because "it traces the history of our neighborhood." He said the shop is named after Christian Jipp, a German immigrant who built the grocery store in 1868.

Mr. Jipp lived in the back of the store with his wife, Henrietta and their children Ella, Rhoda and Meta, until their home at 732 Gaines St., was built in 1878.

Over the years, the store was converted from a laundromat in 1958 to a pool house, before it became a drug house. The changes were "reflecting what the neighborhood had gone through," Mr. Haberman said.

The city wanted to tear down the abandoned building and home in 1989, but Mr. Haberman, then president of the Hamburg Historic District Homeowners Association, wanted to save them. So, the homeowners association bought the buildings for $4,000 in 1997.

Vintage oak flooring that dates back to 1900 will be installed in the shop, and volunteers are building a lift that runs from the first floor to the basement. The group also plans to rebuild the original wooden loading dock outside the back of the store.

They also will build a platform near the side entrance facing West 8th Street and a handicapped-accessible ramp, he said.

"If this building can be saved, then any building can be saved. We're still moving forward, Haberman said. We will be successful."

Infobox: Gateway Redevelopment Group is looking for vintage woodwork, doors, hardware, light fixtures and other items for the Architectural Rescue Shop at the Jipp. To donate an item, or make a monetary contribution, call Jack Haberman at (563) 326-3290, or visit www.grgdavenport.org.


Gateway Redevelopment Group, Davenport, Iowa