Special Events
in and around Logan County

New balloon fest chairman is an old hand

[AUG. 20, 2001]  Although Vern Turner is the new chairman of Lincoln’s 13th annual Balloon Festival he’s an old hand at working with that event. He’s always been an avid supporter, following the balloon fest from its very first year, and this year he’s taking over, after training under previous chairman, Dave Campbell. Campbell was in charge of the event for the past 11 years.

"From almost nothing, the balloon fest got bigger and bigger," Turner remembers. "It started off ... with maybe a dozen or so balloons, and only three or four for the balloon glow at night."

At one time, the courthouse square was closed to traffic, he recalls, and a stage was set up at Pulaski and Kickapoo streets. People had to park nearby and walk to the fest. There were very few vendors in the beginning, and those who came could just choose their spots and set up.


He remembers the days of the balloon fest downtown as a lot of fun and very festive, but he remembers some of the problems, too. "There was a lot of preparation. There were no electrical outlets, so we had to put in fuse boxes and run wire across the tops of buildings and across streets for the amusements. Then when it was over we had to take it all down.

"The balloon fest outgrew itself. It got so big we had to take it to the fairgrounds." It’s been there for the past eight or nine years.


This year at the fairgrounds there will be 47 balloons going up, a carnival with rides for every age, a full contingent of food and drink vendors, and a new feature, corporate tents or chalets. The tents, put up by local business firms, will have food and drink catered in and give business associates and friends a place to relax and visit with friends. Turner’s wife, Norma, is in charge of that event.

The balloonists come from all over Illinois and from many other states as well, mostly western states, Turner says. He remembers a number of balloons from New Mexico, where the popular sport started, as well as from Colorado, Missouri, Iowa and a few from Florida.


As chairman this year, Turner has a lot to think about, but he doesn’t have to personally take each balloon owner to his designated space on the fairgrounds. A committee of Jim Phelen, Bob Graue and Jim Ireland will take care of that. But Turner has to concern himself about a lot of other things, such as tables and chairs, a clean-up committee, tents, garbage pickup, and yes, the portable toilets that will be strategically placed around the fairgrounds.

He thinks the new one-way traffic routing in place this year will help with the traffic problem. This year, people wanting to enter the grounds will turn south on Jefferson Street, which will be one-way, then turn right on Short 11th, which will be one-way west. They can enter either at the south gate or turn north on Postville and enter at the west or the northwest gates.


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Northbound traffic coming in from Lincoln Parkway (Old Route 66) can turn north on Postville Drive to enter the fairgrounds at the northwest gate, near the new University of Illinois Extension building. Traffic southbound on Lincoln Parkway will not be allowed to enter Postville Drive but will have to go down to Fifth Street, Turner said. Parking on Postville Drive will also be one-way only.

When chase vehicles go out to pick up the balloons, they can go out the east gate only, then must go one block over to Madison if they want to go north to Woodlawn Street, he said.

Although hot-air balloons have been popular in the southwest for years, Turner thinks that the Lincoln Balloon Festival was one of the first in Illinois.

Danville, Centralia, Lisle, Rockford, Rantoul and Macomb are among other sites that have hosted balloon festivals.


"People come from all over, from Taylorville, Kankakee, Ottawa, a lot from Springfield and Decatur," he says. During the years he helped by parking cars, he was surprised to find three or four carloads of people coming from the Chicago area "just to see that many balloons take off."

Balloons will ascend at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, with balloon glows about 45 minutes later. On Saturday night, if the grounds are not too dry, a fireworks display is planned, Turner said. Balloons will also launch on Saturday morning at 6:30 a.m. and on Sunday at 6:45 a.m.

Turner, who recently retired from CILCO, is thinking ahead to next year. He regrets that the fest won’t have the Gold Wing motorcycle group parading from downtown to the fairgrounds, but that couldn’t be arranged this year. He would like to see them come back next year, along with a new feature, chariot races.


A lot of organization is needed to get the balloon fest off the ground, and Turner sees it as a community effort. "The state, city and county police do a great job helping us with traffic, and we have a fireman and a paramedic on duty on the grounds at all times.

"But it’s the volunteers that make this successful," he says. "It’s too big a project to do without a lot of help, and if we had to pay people to do it, we couldn’t afford it. None of the people you’ll see at the gates or parking cars are making a dime.

"I think it is just great that so many people in Lincoln take an interest in the balloon fest."

[Joan Crabb]

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Fair will bring 81 artists to Latham Park

[AUG. 18, 2001]  Eighty-one artists showing work in a variety of media will be on hand for the 28th annual Art Fair in Lincoln, set for Saturday, Aug. 25, and Sunday, Aug. 26, at Latham Park.

Paintings in oil, watercolor, acrylic and other media; sculpture in metal and wood; ceramics; stained glass; and jewelry will be on display and for sale. Thirty-five of the artists will be returning from past years and the rest will be new, according to Shirley Bartelmay, co-chairman of the event this year.

"We are always pleased to have new artists come in. It is nice to diversify, and it is also nice to have some favorites returning," Bartelmay said. She said the fair tries to keep a balance among types of artists so there is as much variety as possible.

To be sure of a high-quality fair, all artists must be accepted by a jury. The three-person jury consists of art teachers and artists who are not exhibiting in the fair themselves. Artists who have attended in the past two years may return without being juried, but all others must be juried in.

"All artists, no matter what medium they work with, must create the work entirely themselves, from the design stage through the execution," Bartelmay said. Co-chair with Bartelmay this year is Debra Short.

A variety of awards and prizes, including prepaid purchases, await the exhibitors. New this year is a Best of Show award, a trophy awarded by the fair’s sponsor and a $350 cash prize given by local artist Lee Dowling. Dowling displays her work primarily at Prospero Gallery in Naples, Fla.


Other cash prizes include first, second and third prizes of $300, $200 and $100, respectively, for two categories: two-dimensional and three-dimensional art works. Another award is the Janet Harris Memorial Award of $100 to the painter displaying the most originality in contemporary expression and form. This award is presented by the Thomas Harris family of Lincoln in memory of their daughter, Janet, who was an art student at the University of Illinois and a talented painter.

These prize winners will be chosen by a two-man jury of artists and art teachers who are not exhibiting at the fair. Ribbons will be placed on the prize winners so fair visitors can identify them.

Contributors classified as Art Patrons and Art Benefactors purchase works at the fair with "Art Bucks," which they have previously committed for purchases. Patrons contribute $100 each toward purchases, and benefactors contribute $250 each. These contributors may spend their Art Bucks with any artist they choose or with any number of artists. Ribbons saying "Patron Purchase" will be given to artists from whom patrons and benefactors buy art.


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"We will probably have $15,000 to $16,000 in pre-fair commitments to purchase art," said Connie Dehner of the Lincoln-Logan County Chamber of Commerce. "This is a way of letting our artists know that there are already people committed to buying artwork at the fair, and it helps us attract good artists."


The Art Fair is sponsored by the local chamber of commerce, though it was originated by the Lincoln Woman’s Club. The fair grew so large that the chamber agreed to take it over. The Woman’s Club, however, still has a strong presence at the fair, serving food at their clubhouse at 230 N. McLean, across from Latham Park. They will serve breakfast breads, sandwiches, desserts and beverages in their air-conditioned clubhouse from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday. The Lincoln Junior Woman’s Club will have a booth in the park and will sell beverages and hot dogs.

The Farmer’s Market, which sets up booths on the west side of the park on Saturday mornings, will be there as usual during the Art Fair, and Dehner expects that plenty of baked goods, along with the customary fruits and vegetables, will be on sale.

The chamber will have a booth near the band shell, where T-shirts and balloon fest pins will be on sale. The booth will also provide programs showing fair visitors how to find a particular artist or a particular category of art work.


In case of extreme weather, the fair has an emergency back-up site, Bartelmay said, which this year is the Lincoln Recreation Center on Primm Road. However, she said, fair exhibitors are prepared to weather ordinary rain and wind. She recalls one year when ESDA Director Dan Fulscher brought the news that a storm with a lot of wind was due in 15 minutes. Bartelmay said she was amazed how soon the exhibitors were "all buttoned up and tied down" and how quickly they were ready to resume displaying their work to the public after the storm passed.

At least 15 volunteers will help with the Art Fair, and altogether 250 volunteers help make the entire art and balloon fest weekend a success, Dehner said. She said volunteers are still needed to take tickets and help with parking cars, and this year all will get a T-shirt to identify them. Anyone who wants to volunteer may call the chamber of commerce at 735-2385.

[Joan Crabb]


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New and almost new events
add to art and balloon fest

A soapbox derby will be on Saturday, Aug. 25, in conjunction with this year’s Lincoln Art & Balloon Festival. The event to take place on the Kickapoo Street hill just south of Contractors Ready Mix looks to field 30 to 35 cars for the first races of their kind in the city of Lincoln.

The derby will begin at 9 a.m., with age classes for 7- to 9-year-olds and 10- to 15-year-olds. Those still wishing to enter a car can do so by contacting Bob Steele at 732-9983.

People who are interested in volunteering to make this event a success should also contact Steele. This first race sanctioned by the art and balloon fest committee and coordinated by the Lincoln Soap Box Downhillers is free to the general public.

In addition, the Oasis senior citizen center is sponsoring their second annual flea market in Scully Park on Saturday, Aug. 25, and Sunday, Aug. 26. The flea market, concentrating on collectables, will be open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. The market will field about 30 vendors this year.

 [Mike Fak]

19th century trades and activities demonstration at Postville Courthouse

Traditional crafts will be demonstrated at an 1800s craft fair Sunday, Aug. 26, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Postville Courthouse State Historic Site, 914 Fifth St. in Lincoln. The event is part of Lincoln’s Art & Balloon Festival.

Illinois craftspeople will demonstrate a variety of 19th century trades including blacksmithing, woodcarving, rope making, and bobbin lace making. An herbalist will demonstrate her craft, and wood turnings will be made on the "Great Wheel" lathe. Lee Slider as "Professor Phineas Fairhead, Practical Phrenologist," will offer demonstrations throughout the day.

Civil War-period dance demonstrations will be conducted between noon and 3 p.m. with public participation encouraged. Live bluegrass and traditional music will be provided, and visitors are encouraged to bring their lawn chairs for these informal performances.

Several fiber-related skills will be demonstrated, including weaving, basket making spinning, quilting and the process of turning flax into linen.

The 1800s craft fair is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be available on site. Some items made during the demonstrations will be for sale. The event is partially funded by Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County and is co-sponsored by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.

Postville Courthouse State Historic Site, administered by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, is a reproduction of the first Logan County Courthouse used by Abraham Lincoln and others from 1840 to 1847. It is open Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. Tours are free, although a donation of $2 for adults and $1 for children is suggested.

[News release from
Illinois Historic Preservation Agency]

Porsche Charity Car Show Aug. 25
at Postville Courthouse

Fine sports cars from the 1950s to the present will be on display during the Lincoln Trail Porsche Club Charity Car Show scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 25, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Postville Courthouse State Historic Site at 914 Fifth St. in Lincoln. This is the third time for the event, which is free and open to the public, and is part of the Lincoln Art & Balloon Festival.

About 20 of the famous German-made cars will be displayed, from the model 356 of the 1950s to the model 996 of today. At 3:15 Lincoln Mayor Beth Davis will choose her three favorite Porsches, which will receive Mayor's Choice plaques courtesy of Neal Tire and Auto Service, NAPA Auto Parts and Burwell Oil Service, all of Lincoln.

During the event there will be a display of scale models inside Postville Courthouse. The display will contain scale versions of Porsche production cars from the 356 through the 914 and 944 to the current Boxster and 996. Scale models marking Porsche's 16 victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans will also be displayed. These include the early 917s through the all-conquering 956/962 to the last Porsche 911 GTI.

Refreshments will be available. The Lincoln Trail Porsche Club Charity Car Show is sponsored by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, which administers Postville Courthouse, and the Lincoln Trail Porsche Club. Funding is provided by the Abraham Lincoln Tourism Bureau of Logan County.



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Proceeds from the event will be used to purchase and plant native hardwood trees in the Postville Courthouse yard. The planting is part of a long-range program to have the yard feature only trees native to Illinois in the mid-1800s. Over the years, the Lincoln Trail Porsche Club has raised funds to plant five trees at Postville Courthouse.

Postville Courthouse State Historic Site is a reproduction of the first Logan County Courthouse, which was used from 1840 to 1847. It was a stop on the 8th Judicial Circuit, playing host to Abraham Lincoln and his fellow lawyers as they traveled on horseback between courthouses to handle legal cases. Postville Courthouse is open Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 5 p.m. for free public tours, although a donation of $2 for adults and $1 for children is suggested.

[News release from
Illinois Historic Preservation Agency]


It’s coming

Art and balloon fest all in order

All year we wait for that weekend when the morning and evening skies are filled with brilliantly colored orbs and the hushed roar of propane flames. The town takes on an excitement as crowds gather in the parks and at the fairgrounds to peruse amazing arts skillfully crafted or view glowing balloons as dusk gathers. Numerous other side events make a wonderful, fun-filled weekend for everyone.

Additions to this year’s schedule are a petting zoo, soapbox derby, Adventure Zone (children’s activities), corporate chalets and fireworks. With local caterers already involved in the weekend, the chamber has contracted Lauer’s Catering from Clinton to supply food and drinks in the corporate chalets. Two corporations have already made reservations, with a possible third to confirm. There is plenty of room for more. A chalet gives your business the best view of the balloon glow while providing a unique setting conducive to making an amiable business impression. It is great opportunity for corporations to show appreciation to their employees or clients, or to entice new business.

The chamber of commerce is still looking for an additional sponsor for the fireworks. That event is only half sponsored at this time.

You can contact the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce for more information about the above activities. Ask for Connie or Pam at (217) 735-2385.

[Click here for a full schedule of events.]



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Special Events Calendar

August 2001

Aug. 24-26
WHO: Public
WHAT: Lincoln Art and Balloon Festival

WHERE: Logan County Fairgrounds and downtown
[Click here to read a three-part LDN article on ballooning.]

Saturday, Aug. 25
SPONSOR: Lincoln Park District
WHAT: Sky's the Limit 5K run

WHERE: Lincoln Park District

Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 25 and 26
SPONSOR: Lincoln Junior Woman's Club
WHAT: Art fair hospitality suite; food served

WHERE: Lincoln Women's Building, 230 N. McLean (across from Latham Park)
WHEN: 9 am - 4 pm Saturday; 9 am - 3 pm Sunday

Saturday, Aug. 25
SPONSOR: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and Lincoln Trail Porsche Club
WHO: Public
WHAT: Porsche show

WHERE: Postville Courthouse State Historic Site
WHEN: 10 am - 4 pm

Sunday, Aug. 26
WHO: Public
WHAT: 1800s Craft Fair

WHERE: Postville Courthouse State Historic Site
WHEN: 10 am - 4 pm

WHO: Public
WHAT: Free tours of J. H. Hawes Grain Elevator Museum

WHERE: Atlanta
WHEN: 1-3 pm

September 2001

Thursday through Saturday, Sept. 6-8
WHO: Public
WHAT: Atlanta Fall Festival

WHERE: Atlanta

Thursday through Saturday, Sept. 6-8
WHO: Public
WHAT: Mount Pulaski Fall Festival

WHERE: Mount Pulaski

Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 8 and 9
SPONSOR: Cedar Creek
WHAT: Cedar Creek Antique & Crafts Festival

WHERE: Logan County Fairgrounds
WHEN: 9 am - 5 pm Saturday; 9 am - 4 pm Sunday

Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 15 and 16
WHO: Public
WHAT: Abraham Lincoln National Railsplitting Contest and Crafts Festival

WHERE: Logan County Fairgrounds
WHEN: 9:30 am - 4 pm Saturday; 10 am - 3 pm Sunday

SPONSOR: Clark's Greenhouse Herbal and Country Garden
WHAT: Herb Fest and Fall Harvest Market; (309) 247-3679

WHERE: San Jose

September TBA
WHO: Public
WHAT: Harvest Festival

WHERE: Scully Park, downtown Lincoln



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October 2001

Saturday, Oct. 20
SPONSOR: St. John United Church of Christ
WHAT: German Fest

WHERE: St. John United Church of Christ, Seventh Street
WHEN: 11 am - 6 pm

WHO: Public
WHAT: 1850s open house

WHERE: Mount Pulaski Courthouse
WHEN: 1-8 pm

SPONSOR: Knapp/Chesnut/Becker Historical Society
WHAT: Turkey supper

WHERE: New Holland-Middletown School, Middletown
WHEN: 4-7 pm

Saturday, Oct. 27
SPONSOR: Lincoln Christian Church
WHAT: Harvest of Talents, benefiting the International Disaster Emergency Service

WHERE: 204 N. McLean St.
WHEN: Daylong activities

SPONSOR: Eminence Christian Church
WHAT: Eminence Christian Church bazaar

WHERE: Atlanta Community Building, city roads 2500 North and 1600 East
WHEN: 8 am - 2 pm

Tuesday, Oct. 30
SPONSOR: Lincoln Park District
WHAT: Halloween Funfest

WHERE: Lincoln Park District ballroom, 900 Primm Road
WHEN: 6:30-8 pm


[Click here for more information on October, November and December events.]


Sites to See

‘Walking on the Path of Abraham Lincoln’

A walking tour of historic Lincoln, Ill.

Note: The following material is from a brochure produced as a high school project by J.R. Glenn and Angie Couch for Main Street Lincoln. The Main Street Lincoln office and local tourist information center is on the second floor of Union Planter’s Bank at 303 S. Kickapoo.

[Click here for larger map]

1. Town christening site

Broadway and Chicago streets

In August 1853 the first sale of lots in the new town of Lincoln took place near this spot. Abraham Lincoln, in whose honor the town was named, was in attendance. When asked on the day of the land sale to officially "christen the town," Lincoln obliged. Lifting the cover off a pile of watermelons stacked on the ground by a local farmer, Lincoln picked up a melon and conducted a brief ceremony using its juice. Lincoln, Ill., is the only town named for Lincoln before he became president.

2. Lincoln railroad depot

101 N. Chicago St.

Abraham Lincoln frequented this city by train after its founding. As president-elect, Lincoln came hereon Nov. 21, 1860. He stopped near this spot to make a few remarks from the rear of his train. This was his last speech in Logan County and the last time Lincoln would visit his namesake city. His funeral train stopped here on May 3, 1865. The current depot was built several decades later, in 1911.

3. State Bank of Lincoln

111 N. Sangamon St.

Abraham Lincoln met sculptor Leonard Volk for the first time on the boardwalk in front of the Lincoln House Hotel. Volk asked Lincoln to pose for a bust and life mask of his face and hands. Signed copies of the life masks by Volk, as well as original artwork by Lloyd Ostendorf of Lincoln in Logan County, are on display in this bank building’s lobby.

4. Site of the Lincoln House Hotel

501 Broadway St.

The Lincoln House, one of the grandest hotels between St. Louis and Chicago, stood on this spot from 1854 to 1870. All the political luminaries of the day, including Abraham Lincoln, Stephen A. Douglas, David Davis and Richard Oglesby, crossed its threshold at one time or another The Lincoln House was a two-story frame structure that fronted the railroad tracks and featured a large veranda.

5. Robert Latham home site

400 N. Kickapoo St.

Robert B. Latham joined John D. Gillett and Virgil Hickox in founding the town of Lincoln in 1853. Abraham Lincoln, other lawyers and judges were often guests at his house.

6. Logan County Courthouse

When Lincoln became the county seat in 1853, a courthouse was built on this spot. A second courthouse was built in 1858 and remained in use until the early 20th century, when it was replaced with the current building. Abraham Lincoln practiced law and attended political functions in the first two courthouses built on the square. A statue of Lincoln stands in this courthouse. A Civil War monument and cannon sit on the north side of the courthouse grounds.

7. Lincoln lot site

523 Pulaski St.

A plaque located on the right-hand side of this store identifies the location as a lot Lincoln once owned. James Primm, in need of money, approached former Illinois Gov. Joel Matteson for a $400 advance. Matteson directed him to have Lincoln sign a note as Primm's guarantor. Lincoln co-signed the note. Later Primm defaulted and Lincoln had to pay the note. Eventually Primm deeded Lincoln this property in recompense.


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8. Rustic Inn

412 Pulaski St.

In 1876 members of a counterfeiting gang met here to hatch a plot to steal Lincoln's corpse from its burial vault in Springfield. The gang had planned to hide Lincoln's body in the Indiana sand dunes on the shore of Lake Michigan and negotiate with the governor of Illinois for $200,000 in cash and the release of Ben Boyd. The bartender at the Rustic Inn overheard the plot and reported it to the authorities. The Secret Service later apprehended the gang members. Robert Todd Lincoln had his father's coffin encased in several tons of cement to prevent future attempts to steal the body.

Other Lincoln sites in Lincoln

9. Stephen A. Douglas speech site

Comer of Fourth and Logan streets

Stephen Douglas visited this city during the famous 1858 Illinois senatorial campaign. Douglas paraded with all his supporters through the decorated streets to the tent that was pitched on this site. Lincoln, who was also in town, listened to his opponent from the back of the crowd. In the end, a majority of Logan County voters favored Lincoln, but Douglas won the 1858 election.

10. Postville Courthouse

914 Fifth St.

This state historic site is a replica of an 1840 courthouse where Lincoln argued, won and lost cases while he traveled the 8th Judicial Circuit.

11. Site of Deskins Tavern

915 Fifth St.

Lincoln often stayed at Deskins Tavern when he traveled to Postville. A well where he quenched his thirst is also at this site.

12. Postville Park

1300 Fifth St.

Abraham Lincoln was well-known for his athletic abilities, and he frequently joined in games of "town ball" at this village park.

13. Lincoln College and Museum

300 Keokuk St.

A nationally registered landmark, Lincoln College was founded and named for President Lincoln on Feb. 12, 1865. The museum houses an extensive collection of memorabilia on the life of Abraham Lincoln.

Other sites of interest in downtown Lincoln 

Lincoln Public Library (a Carnegie building)

725 Pekin St.

Logan County Genealogical
& Historical Society

114 N. Chicago St.

Lincoln City Hall

700 Broadway St.

U.S. Post Office

102 S. McLean St.

Courthouse Square Historic District

including historic sites, restaurants and shops

[Click here for larger map]

Logan County historical landmarks


J. H. Hawes wooden country elevator. Open Sunday afternoons June through August. Free.

Atlanta Public Library and Museum. On National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1908. Comer of Race and Arch. Phone (217) 648-2112. Free.


Monument proclaims the geographic center of the state of Illinois. Town was laid out in 1872.


Elkhart Cemetery. Richard J. Oglesby, who was elected governor of Illinois in 1864, 1872 and 1884, is buried here; also John Dean Gillett, known as the "Cattle King of the World," and Capt. Adam Bogardus, wing shot champion of the world. For tours of the cemetery and John Dean Gillett Chapel, please phone (217) 947-2238.


Bethel Church. Built in 1854. Three miles from Route 136 between Emden and Atlanta on County Road 20.


Site of Deskins Tavern. Across the street from Postville Courthouse, 915 Fifth St. Signage. Free.

Site of well Abraham Lincoln drank from. Across the street from Postville Courthouse, 915 Fifth St. Free.

Site of town christening by Abraham Lincoln on Aug. 27, 1853. Lincoln was the first community in the United States to be named for Abraham Lincoln before he became famous. Also, Lincoln's funeral train stopped here on May 3,1865. Located at the south side of the Lincoln Depot, Broadway and Chicago streets. Official Looking for Lincoln signage. Free.

Logan County Courthouse. Contains second-largest courtroom in Illinois. Built in 1905. Located on the courthouse square, downtown Lincoln. Open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; Saturday until noon. Phone (217) 732-6400. Free.

Lincoln College Museum. Over 3,000 historic items. Lincoln College was founded and named for President Lincoln on Feb. 12, 1865. Keokuk and Ottawa streets. Summer hours: 9 to 4 Monday through Friday; 1 to 4 Saturday and Sunday; closed May 28 and July 4. Free.

Heritage In Flight Museum. Museum is filled with memorabilia from all U.S. military conflicts back to World War I. Located at the Logan County Airport. Phone ahead (217) 732-3333 to confirm hours. Free but donations accepted.

Lincoln Public Library. Original Carnegie library built in 1902. Tiffany-style glass inner dome. 725 Pekin St. Open Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday, 9 to 6; Saturday, 9 to 3. Phone (217) 732-8878. Free.

Postville Courthouse State Historic Site. Guided tours. 914 Fifth St. Noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Ph. (217) 732-8930 for additional information. Free but donations accepted.


Stage Coach Inn. The inn was on the old stage route from Springfield to Peoria. Built mid 1800s. Village is also famous for its aeronautical history. Free.

Mount Pulaski

Mount Pulaski Courthouse. This building is one of only two original 8th Judicial Circuit courthouses in Illinois. On National Register of Historic Places. Was Logan County Courthouse from 1847 to 1855. Guided tours. Open 12 to 5 Tuesday through Saturday. Phone (217) 732-8930. Free.

[Link to historical information on communities in Logan County]

Heritage In Flight Museum open on weekends

A little-known historical site full of large and small treasures sits on the outskirts of town on the Logan County Airport property. The Heritage In Flight Museum building itself is a part of history. It is a remnant of Camp Ellis, located west of Havana, which was the largest military training and prisoner-of-war camp in the United States during World War II. After the war the camp was closed and the buildings were sold. Logan County Airport is fortunate to have one of the few remaining structures from Camp Ellis.

A little-known historical site full of large and small treasures sits on the outskirts of town on the Logan County Airport property. The Heritage In Flight Museum building itself is a part of history. It is a remnant of Camp Ellis, located west of Havana, which was the largest military training and prisoner-of-war camp in the United States during World War II. After the war the camp was closed and the buildings were sold. Logan County Airport is fortunate to have one of the few remaining structures from Camp Ellis.

Several historic items are found outside at the airport, including the rotating beacon, the green-and-white light that identifies the airport location to pilots flying at night. Before being moved to Logan County Airport, it was part of the lighted airway system that the airmail pilots in the 1920s used to navigate at night. The one that now resides here was originally located between Lincoln and Atlanta and provided a bright signal for Charles Lindbergh when he flew the airmail route between St. Louis and Chicago.

While outside you can also view a number of aircraft that are on display from various time periods.

Moving to the inside, you find that the Heritage in Flight Museum is filled with items of aviation history from the military and civilian branches of flying and from the earliest days of open-cockpit biplanes to the latest jets. Veterans who reside in Logan County have donated much of what the museum has. Families from the community have donated items that belonged to our war heroes, revealing special sentiments, symbolism and forgotten practices that held a community together in war times. Other items offer a look at early technology such as the airplane and ship radios. Of the thousands of items in the museum, each can be said to teach us something about our past. Visitors can relive history through the numerous displays, mostly grouped in wartime periods, and gain a strong sense of patriotism while studying military displays throughout the building.


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A guided tour is recommended to get the most from these displays. The volunteers are both knowledgeable and passionate about their subject matter and will bring to light little-known nuances that make the displays fascinating.

The museum is always interested in adding items of aviation history. Its greatest need, however, is for more volunteers to help in the guardianship of this important gateway to Lincoln and Logan County.

The museum requires lots of care and maintenance. Members are always looking for interested people of all ages to help care for it, share their interests and preserve a bit of aviation history.

Heritage In Flight Museum is operated by an all-volunteer, non-profit organization: Heritage-In-Flight, Inc. You are invited to come meet the members and sit in on their meetings anytime. Meetings take place at 1 p.m. the first Saturday of each month in the terminal meeting room.

The museum is a great resource to educate our youth about our aeronautical and military past and shares the wealth of military traditions from a community and national perspective. Schools, youth groups and families are welcome.

Heritage in Flight Museum

1351 Airport Road, Lincoln

Open Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Phone: (217) 732-3333

Call the airport and leave a message to request a guided tour, schedule a time during the week or ask for more information.


You can read more about HIF from the archives of LDN. Go to: http://archives.lincolndailynews.com/2001/Feb/15/comunity/business.shtml#Logan County is host to a unique museum rich in special military stories and treasures



  • Lincoln Park District, 732-8770



Blue Dog Inn
111 S. Sangamon
Monday 11-2
Tuesday-Thursday 11-10
Friday & Saturday 11-11

2815 Woodlawn Road




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