Hauberg Estate ( Susanne Denkmann-Hauberg & John Hauberg)
1300 24th Street
Individual National Register Listing, 1972; Rock Island's 100 Most Significant Unprotected Structures, 2009; Designated Local Rock Island Landmark, 2016; Landmarks Illinois, Richard H. Driehaus recipient, 2019; American Horticultural Society member garden since 2020.
Outstanding high-style Prairie mansion associated with philanthropists Susanne Denkmann Hauberg and John Hauberg.
Architect / Builder
Spencer, Robert C., and Powers, Horace S., Architects, Spencer and Powers Architecture; Niedecken, George Mann, Interior Architect; Jensen, Jens, Landscape Architect
The house is splendid – it wraps around a curving hillside on a very disciplined but irregular plan. This Prairie style masterpiece is the work of Chicago architects Robert C. Spencer and Horace S. Powers, contemporaries of Frank Lloyd Wright. Spencer and Powers were known for blending the “modern” Prairie style with historical elements, particularly half-timbering. Mrs. Denkmann-Hauberg's favorite flower - the tulip - is featured stylistically throughout the exterior and interior. Spencer adapted the tulip to stone insets, plaster molding, wood organ screens, decorative tiles and much more.
Landscape architect Jens Jensen, also from Chicago and very famous in his own right, laid out the ten acre tract to appear as a native woodland. Jenen's original landscape design is being restored with native plants, rebuilding of the five ponds and waterfall, a winding path and a stone bridge.
In 1911, Susanne Denkmann accepted the marriage proposal of John Hauberg in the "Tulip Room". They became leaders of civic philanthropy. Heiress Susanne was the youngest daughter of Frederick Denkmann, founding partner in the Weyerhaeuser - Denkmann lumber empire. Susanne’s own civic accomplishments included establishment of the West End Settlement, the Rock Island Y.W.C.A., children’s camps, and, with her siblings, donation of the Denkmann Memorial Library at Augustana College. John Hauberg was instrumental in securing Black Hawk’s Watch Tower as a state park in 1927. Much of his personal collection helped create the John Hauberg Indian Museum. One of his lasting legacies was as the recorder of the oral histories of the area’s pioneers, housed at the Rock Island County Historical Society Library.
The Hauberg’s children, Catherine and John Jr., donated this architectural masterpiece to the City of Rock Island to be used as Hauberg Center in 1956. The Friends of Hauberg Civic Center Foundation operate and manage the Hauberg Estate.