Our map will help you find nearby destinations, sites based on your interest, or both! Just choose the types of sites you wish to see and the area you wish to explore. Click on a site to learn more.
- 8th Judicial Circuit
- Friends of Lincoln
- Good for Kids
- Guided/Self-Guided Tours
- Historic House
- Historic Site
- Lincoln-Douglas Debate
- Passport Site
- Top Destination
- Underground Railroad
- Visitor Information
- Wayside Exhibit
William Watson Hotel (Mansion House)
105 East Washington Street Pittsfield, Illinois 62363
Built circa 1838
The hotel was built by William Watson one of the first settler’s in Pittsfield. Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas would gather in the lobby when they were in town. Later Watson would sell the hotel to Joel Pennington whose son Goyn became friends with John G. Nicolay. The hotel was a very active place. Rooms above with retail space below. By the late 1800s one could find lodging, a barber shop, blacksmith and tack shops.
World's Largest Railsplitter Covered Wagon
1750 5th St. Lincoln, Illinois 62656
Lincoln's history doesn't stop at Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln also later became a popular stop along the historic Route 66, beginning in its infancey in 1926.
In 2007, the World's Largest Covered Wagon was added along Route 66 and is recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records.
Abraham Lincoln Sites Narrated Tour
200 N. Main Street Bloomington, Illinois 61701
You can explore Lincoln sites throughout downtown and other sites in Bloomington-Normal using the McLean County Museum of History narrated tour. It is available on the McLean County Museum of History iOS and Android app, at the Cruisin' with Lincoln on 66 website, and also as a CD in the gift shop.
Begin the tour at the McLean County Museum of History
Jacksonville Looking for Lincoln Audio Tour
310 East State Street Jacksonville, Illinois 62650
Each site on the audio tour dramatizes a Lincoln story with an entertaining and educational audio interpretation. These are an informative and fun way to learn the local stories of Jacksonville’s Lincoln connections. MP3 file downloads are available here or the linked page noted below. These files can be played on your mobile device, or by using your vehicle’s bluetooth connectivity. Some of the sites have a radio broadcast of the audio interpretation. When you arrive at each destination, tune your radio to the noted frequency on the sign at the site. Compact discs of the recordings are also available at the Jacksonville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau at 310 East State Street, the Jacksonville Area Chamber of Commerce, and at area hotels.
Talking Houses of Pittsfield
Start at the Milton Hay House, 332 West Washington Street Pittsfield, Illinois 62363
Pittsfield is a unique community when it comes to Abraham Lincoln. Between 1838 and 1858 Abraham Lincoln visited Pike County and the Pittsfield community several times. During his visits he became friends with many local men and their families through politics and legal business.
In 2007 an effort was made by the Abe Lincoln Project/Looking for Lincoln in Pike County to mark several of these homes with waysides telling the story of the families that lived in the home and their relationship to Lincoln.
On behalf of the Abe Lincoln Project we invite you to take our Talking House Tour and learn the history of the families that knew Abraham Lincoln personally.
Lincoln - Douglas Square
Broadway St. and Landmarks Blvd Alton, IL 62002
The final senatorial debate between Stephen A. Douglas and Abraham Lincoln took place in front of Alton's city hall at the corner of Broadway and Market Streets in 1858.
The debate itself drew national attention and more than 6,000 people gathered in downtown Alton for the event.
That moment in time is forever frozen in time at the Lincoln-Douglas Square. Lifesize bronze statues depict the two men intensely debating the issues of the time.
Lincoln Douglas Debate Museum
126 E. St. Charleston, Illinois 61920
Tour the only museum in Illinois retracing the senatorial debates of 1858 between Abraham Lincoln and Stephan Douglas. The museum offers exhibits and interactive displays that tell the debates’ story through film, audio selections, artifacts and photos.
Lincoln Douglas Debate Site
Washington Sq. Park 101 E. Lafayette St. Ottawa, Illinois 61350
The first Lincoln-Douglas senatorial debate was held in Ottawa’s historic Washington Square on August 21, 1858. Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas stood in this beautiful park to deliver the first of seven senatorial debates. It was estimated that 20,000 spectators gathered to witness this famous debate. The site of the debate is marked by a boulder and plaque, and a fountain topped by bronze statues of the “Railsplitter” and “The Little Giant” forms the centerpiece of the beautifully landscaped square.
Lincoln Douglas Debate Square
114 E. Douglas St. Freeport, Illinois 61032
On August 27, 1858, the most significant of the historic Lincoln-Douglas debates took place in Freeport, IL and gave the nation direction in succeeding years due to the famous Freeport Doctrine. While Stephen Douglas kept his seat in the Senate after the debates, his reply that each state should be perfectly free to do as it pleased in regards to slavery, no matter the ruling of the Supreme Court, stirred a sentiment of betrayal among constituents that would come back to haunt him in his bid for President in the election of 1860. Abraham Lincoln’s point that “a house divided could not stand,” his belief that Americans of every race were entitled to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” and his stance against Douglas’ advocacy for popular sovereignty were what ultimately led to his election later on.
Visit the Lincoln-Douglas Debate Square in historic downtown Freeport, next to the Union Dairy, to see the first statue ever erected to include both Lincoln and Douglas in commemoration of the debates that influenced US history. This landmark is one of two points of interest for Lincoln history in Stephenson County.