The history of the area dates back to the 1800's when waterfowl and deer hunters used the area to launch their boats. Many hunters camped along these banks because cabins were not usually built along the river. However, a man by the name of Stookleberry built a barn and small cabin on Blanchard Island when he owned the property.
From 1837 to 1841, Stanton Prentiss operated an Illinois-based ferry just above the current day Blanchard Island.
In the 1920's Blanchard Island became a popular island for making "moonshine", also known as "hooch, whitemill, and whiskey". A local resident of the area was always warned not to go to the island for fear of being shot, so he did as he was told, even though he never saw a real "bootlegger".