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History & Mystery

A walk through Galena Country is like taking a journey back to the 19th century. Where else can you walk the steps Ulysses S. Grant took to work? Or stand in the room where he heard he had become the 18th President of the United States? It’s historic treasures like these, and vignettes of what life was like in the 19th century, that make Galena Country an authentic step back in time. It’s also why so many of our sites are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

1876 Banwarth House & Museum

Step back in time to 1876, when U.S. Grant was president and Queen Victoria ruled the British Empire. Enjoy an informative 40-minute guided tour of the Banwarth family home and experience what everyday ...

Apple River Fort State Historic Site

Located in Elizabeth, this is the site of one of the battles fought during the Black Hawk War. Black Hawk and his 200 warriors attacked the hastily erected fort on June 24, 1832. His story and that of ...

Chicago Great Western Railway Depot Museum

The Depot museum is located in a former Chicago Great Western Railway station and focuses on the railroads of Northwest Illinois. Thousands of railroad artifacts are displayed in the museum's collection. ...

Council Hill Station

A unique and historic 1850's general store/railway station with a silo, ruin of a woolen mill and barn on the east fork of the Galena River is now a watering hole and music venue featuring food, 90-plus ...

DeSoto House Hotel

Illinois' oldest operating hotel, 55 Victorian-style guest rooms; enclosed guest parking. Three restaurants; meeting, banquet, wedding facilities; self-guided historic walking tour; 'Quiet Room' to sit ...

Dowling House

Galena's oldest house, built of native limestone in 1826 as a trading post and residence. Furnished with primitives and a collection of Galena pottery. Open Seasonally. Attendee Capacity: 30 People Tour ...

Elihu B. Washburne House State Historic Site

Elihu B. Washburne was a prominent Galena attorney and later a popular U.S. Congressman (1853-1869), political advisor to Abraham Lincoln and Ulysses S. Grant and ambassador to France (1869-1877). Visit ...

Elizabeth History Museum

Local history exhibits on lead mining; the Apple River Fort; Elizabeth businesses, schools, and veterans. Open on weekends May - October; 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Group Tour/Motorcoach Group Capacity: 45 ...

Galena & U.S. Grant Museum

Explore Galena's history and meet the spirits of Ulysses and Julia Grant in a hologram that welcomes guests to the museum where true national treasures, such as the "Peace in Union" painting, "General ...

Galena Tours App

Galena’s first and only tour app! This comprehensive app offers the opportunity to experience the rich history of the town of Galena, IL.  It allows you to visit 291 historical locations, virtually from ...

Hanover Historical Society

The museum provides an in-depth look at items related to the history of the village of Hanover. The Larry Bell, Jr. Collection featuring 1,000 Native American artifacts collected over 45 years, 70% which ...

Linmar Gardens

The enchanting Linmar Gardens is nestled on a hillside overlooking the historic town of Galena. The secluded and privately owned three and one-half acre garden sits atop natural outcroppings which have ...

Main Street Galena

This is THE shopping experience! With more than 125 shops and restaurants, one door after another. There is just as much variety, quality and special activities and sales but with far less time spent ...

Old Market House State Historic Site

Constructed in 1845-1846, was the focal point of community life during Galena's heyday. The Greek revival Old Market House sheltered vendors and shoppers, who gathered in the heart of the river city's ...

Old Stockade on the Cobblestone Street

Restored and documented; a 1820s log building. Learn about those keeping Galena's history alive for almost 200 years! Free admission, donations appreciated. ...

Sinsinawa Mound

Located on 450 acres of lush woodlands, orchards, vineyards, fields and gardens, Sinsinawa Mound offers an ideal atmosphere for personal reflection, group retreats, corporate focusing or organizational ...

Stockton Heritage Museum

The Stockton Heritage Museum is a nonprofit organization, whose mission is to collect and preserve the oral, written, and pictorial memoirs and data of the past, relating to Stockton and Northwestern ...

The Belvedere

The Belvedere is an Italianate mansion built in 1857 and has been considered the finest mansion in Galena. This historic 22-room mansion is truly lavish featuring Victorian furnishings, Liberace's estate ...

The Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design

This satellite facility of an international museum features contemporary art, architecture, and photography from around the world. The Historic Fulton Brewery building in Galena houses the Center for ...

The Old Blacksmith Shop

Authentic 1897 blacksmith shop with working forges. Filled with tools and equipment from its 100 year history. Historian on site. The gift shop is well-stocked with Galena-forged items made by our blacksmiths. ...

Ulysses S. Grant Home State Historic Site

Tour the home of the United States 18th president, Ulysses S. Grant! On Aug. 18, 1865, Galena celebrated the return of its Civil War hero Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. Following a jubilant procession with much ...

Woodbine Glass Museum & Gift Shop

The glass museum displays 4,020 pieces of hand blown glass, including contemporary and antique works from all countries. Video shows glass blowing. Gift shop. Group Tour Capacity: 20 People Group ...