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Old State Capitol State Historic Site
The Old State Capitol is a reconstruction of Illinois' fifth statehouse, the first to be located in Springfield. It is here that Lincoln practiced law, served as a legislator and gave his famed House Divided speech on slavery in 1858. The building served as the seat of state government and a center of Illinois political life from 1839-1876. The current State Capitol Building is the center of state government, where visitors can watch Illinois politics in action when the legislature is in session.
Stroll downtown Springfield and check out shops that carry everything from Lincoln souvenirs to one-of-a-kind jewelry and fresh-made fudge. Downtown is also host to many events and festivals throughout the year.
Here I Have Lived Exhibits
View over 40 outdoor interpretive exhibits placed throughout the downtown area to experience Springfield as Abraham Lincoln knew it. Each exhibit is intended to capture a moment in time for Lincoln and how he was affected by the people, places and events he encountered in his hometown. Each story is accompanied by graphics or photographs and a medallion that is symbolic of that particular story. Visitors are encouraged to collect rubbings of each medallion.
Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition
Abraham Lincoln spent 30 years in Central Illinois, where he raised his family and pursued his passion for the law and politics. Today, the 42 counties of the state's Central region have been designated as the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area, which is managed by the Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition. The group is responsible for preserving the history and heritage of Lincoln’s Illinois, and offers information on historic sites and suggested tours.
History Comes Alive
Every day for 12 weeks this summer, you’ll be able to take a step back in time as you participate in a whole array of living history performances and programs that will both delight and educate about the Springfield Abraham Lincoln knew and loved for most of his life. From Civil War encampments to White House kitchen chats with Mr. Lincoln himself, there’s something for everyone. Some events may have a fee.
Lincoln: History to Hollywood
“Lincoln: History to Hollywood,” an exhibition of sets, costumes and props from the Steven Spielberg’s Academy Award-winning film “Lincoln,” has opened at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum complex, located in downtown Springfield, Illinois. Items of note in the exhibit include Lincoln’s office set, a vignette of Mary Lincoln’s bedroom, Lincoln’s gloves, Tad Lincoln’s tin soldiers, and the rocking chair where President Lincoln sat with Tad. Most of the furniture pieces in the exhibit are antiques from the Civil War era, not reproductions. The exhibits are on long-term loan from Spielberg and DreamWorks Studio. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum features more than 40,000 square feet of galleries, theatres and historic displays that takes visitors on a journey from Lincoln’s humble beginnings through his Presidency. The “Lincoln: History to Hollywood” exhibit will be located in Union Station, across the street from the presidential museum.
Within this breathtaking monument lie the remains of Abraham Lincoln, his wife Mary, and three of their four sons – located in the country’s second most visited cemetery behind only Arlington National Cemetery.
Illinois Executive Mansion
Home of the Illinois Governor, the mansion is the third-oldest, continuously occupied governor's home in the nation. Filled with antiques and historic artifacts. Built in 1855 the mansion contains 16 elegantly appointed rooms open for viewing, including the state dining room, a library and the Lincoln bedroom.
Lincoln Memorial Garden Nature Center
Located on the shores of Lake Springfield and designed by landscape architect, Jens Jensen, five miles of wooded trails lead you on a journey through the Illinois landscape Lincoln walked.
Built in 1833 this Italianate mansion entertained prominent solialites and politicians at many lavish dinner parties, summer picnics and political rallies in mid-19th century Springfield, Hold hands with your honey next the the authentic "Lincoln Courting Couch" still present in the home.
Lincoln-Herndon Law Offices State Historic Site
This is the only remaining structure where Abraham Lincoln maintained working law offices. Lincoln and his final law partner, William Herndon, operated from the top floor of the building from 1843 to 1852. Filled with clutter and makeshift furniture, the offices draw a vivid picture of what a normal day was like for Lincoln and Herndon. Today the building includes a visitor center, federal courtrooms and attorney offices. ***Closed for historic renovation. Plans are to reopen in late 2015 with a restored dry good store, Lincoln's law office and federal court exhibits.***
Lincoln Manahan Museum
Abraham Lincoln, then 47, came to Sterling to speak at a rally for presidential candidate, John C. Fremont. On July 18, 1856, a twist of fate brought Mr. Lincoln to the home of Sheriff William Manahan to spend the night. He slept on a sofa with two chairs placed at its end to accommodate his long legs. In the morning he graciously thanked his host and left Sterling for a speaking engagement in Chicago and the rest is history! The home has been restored and its interior, furnishings, and facade reflect the time when Lincoln visited in the late 1850s.
The Last Stop Abraham Lincoln Statue
The world's only statue of Abe Lincoln and a pig commemorates Lincoln's bemused request for a "writ of quietus" to calm noisy pigs gathered under the courthouse floor. "The Last Stop" refers to the location on the old 8th Judicial Circuit.
Christian County Historical Society Museum
See an 1820s log house, the 1839 Christian County courthouse where Lincoln argued cases, an 1854 farmhouse and an 1856 one-room school. Also view military weapons from five wars, a collection of 1800s antiques and much more.
Vandalia, Illinois is where Abraham Lincoln began his historical political career and his life and achievements are commemorated on the marker.
Fayette County Museum
Located behind the Statehouse in a century-old church, this museum is full of Lincoln-era memorabilia, including his letter cabinet and an axe carved with his initials.
Little Brick House
Listed on the National Register, it has six restored rooms with china, furniture, engravings, and books that belonged to the settlers when Lincoln attended the legislature.
Located across from the Statehouse in Vandalia, the park features a life-size, bronze statue of Abraham Lincoln. This is a favorite spot for photos with the 16th president.
The Presidential Hall of Fame Museum
Former Congressman Ken Gray's collection of over 12,000 items includes campaign memorabilia, photos and documents from former presidents and dignitaries, 1,000 original dolls, videos, four cars driven by the congressman and much more.