Lincoln Home National Historic Site

Sign marking Lincoln Home National Historic Site

The Lincoln Home National Historic Site preserves about 12 acres of the residential area around the home Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln bought in 1844 in Springfield, Illinois. The only home Lincoln ever owned, it contains 12 rooms on two floors. During the time Lincoln owned the house, he was elected to the House of Representatives in 1846 and to the Presidency in 1860. After his death, his son Robert donated the home to the State of Illinois in 1887 under the condition that it always be well-maintained and open free of charge to the public. The Lincoln home and the surrounding four blocks is owned by the National Park Service and was designated a National Historic Site in 1971. All of the houses have been refurbished to the state they were in back in those days and two of them, the Arnold House (housing the "If These Walls Could Talk" exhibit) and the Dean House (housing the "What a Pleasant Home Abe Lincoln Has" exhibit), are open to the public. The property is visited by close to 500,000 people per year.

The Lincoln Home Visitor Center is located at 426 South 7th Street and is open from 8:30 am to 5 pm daily except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Days. You need to check in at the visitor center to get a free ticket for the tour of Lincoln's home. Traffic is heavy in the summer so you'll want to be early. Other than the requirement that you obtain a free ticket for the tour of the Lincoln Home, the only other element resembling a fee is the parking lot: $2 per hour (subject to change), payable at the information desk in the visitor center. And figure on 1.5-to-2 hours for a good visit.

A view of other historic homes in thje neighborhood of the Lincoln Home National Historic Site
Other homes in the Lincoln Home National Historic Site District

Upper photo courtesy of Ian Manka, CCA-by-SA 3.0 License
Upper left photo courtesy of the National Park Service
Lower photo courtesy of Robert Lawton, CCA-by-SA 2.5 License