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History Comes Alive

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Fri, Jun 02 – Sun, Aug 06, 2023 • 9:00am - 5:00pm

1 South Old State Capitol Plaza, Springfield, IL 62701

This summer History Comes Alive returns for its 14th season as Abraham and Mary Lincoln lead a cast of characters on a trip back in time.

Meet the Lincolns at historic sites throughout the city and learn about their lives in Springfield. From historic portrayals at locations such as the Lincoln Home National Historic Site, the Old State Capitol, and the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, to a Flag Lowering Ceremony at the Lincoln Tomb with the 114th Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry Reactivated, visitors are invited to become a part of living history. Listen to Abraham deliver some of his most famous speeches, and enjoy live music and an ice cream social with the Abe & Mary at Edwards Place.

History Cooks is back! Calling all foodies! History Cooks is back! Have you ever wondered what Mrs. Lincoln fed her hungry boys, or how the ethnic diversity played into the food of the Lincoln neighborhood, or what was served at Lincoln's Inaugural Dinner? Check out the new History Cooks collection! Each week the Lincoln Home has partnered with Lincoln Land Community College's Culinary School to feature a cooking demonstration inspired by the life and times of the Lincoln Neighborhood. Make sure to collect all of this season's recipe cards so you can make your own history cooks dish!

Since the time of Lincoln, Springfield has welcomed Route 66, witnessed events that prompted social change, and experienced artistic and cultural development. This season, join the Illinois Department of Natural Resources for one of their free Walk, Hike and Bike Tours or reserve your spot on a Springfield Walks tour. Reserve your Walk, Hike, Bike Tour! Book your Springfield Walks Tour!

Springfield wasn't the only town Abraham Lincoln ever lived. This year reserve your spot on the free Saturday morning shuttle to Lincoln's New Salem Historic Site. The reconstructed pioneer village near Petersburg, IL is where Abraham spent his life as a young adult. Let us shuttle you back in time so you can explore this site on your own for a few hours every Saturday. Make your shuttle reservation now!

Get your kicks on Route 66 with a guided Ace Sign Company Sign Museum tour. Listen to concerts at one of the largest Carillon's in the world: the Thomas Rees Memorial Carillon, and the Levitt AMP concert series.  Enjoy a special program Springfield & Central IL African American History Museum. Meet soldiers through Illinois history at the Illinois State Military Museum.

New in 2023: 

Lincoln Troubadours-An acapella group of 8 young performers dressed in period clothing and presenting the music of Lincoln's day. Performances given at various downtown locations every Thursday - Saturday.

Guided Tours of the Gen X Exhibit-The Illinois State Museum is psyched to give Gen X its moment in the sun with a new exhibition, Growing Up X. Tours will explore what it was like to “grow up x” through the toys, technology, and experiences shared by the people who lived it.

Guided Tour of Lincoln Memorial Garden- Guests will traverse the beautiful trails at Lincoln Memorial Garden with an expert and learn the history of how the garden came to be.

Places to stay nearby...

Wyndham Springfield - City Centre


Full service hotel located in historic downtown.

Read more about Wyndham Springfield - City Centre

President Abraham Lincoln Springfield - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel


All of the beautiful guest rooms and suites at this hotel in Springfield, IL, feature modern amenities and thoughtful touches including a flat-screen TV, premium bedding,…

Read more about President Abraham Lincoln Springfield - a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel

Mansion View Inn & Suites - Springfield


Conveniently located in Springfield's downtown area.

Read more about Mansion View Inn & Suites - Springfield

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