Staycation 2017: Looking for Lincoln Celebrates National Impact of Local History


CENTRAL ILLINOIS — What do you do when the kids get restless? Road trip!

The Looking for Lincoln Coalition has made it easy to explore the nationally-significant history available to residents here in Central Illinois. All the 50+ Looking for Lincoln sites in this area offer a closer look at the life and legal practice of President Abraham Lincoln during his time in the state. Some sites have signage while others offer a full living history experience.

“Abraham Lincoln is internationally-known. People travel from all over the world to see these sites that are right here in our backyard. It’s really exciting,” said Sarah Seiler Watson, Executive Director of Looking for Lincoln.

Their web site currently offers a series of “major attractions,” some of which are less than an hour’s drive from some Central Illinois hotspots.

Some of these hotspots are what the group calls “gateways” to the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area, a 42-county area with locations significant to Lincoln’s life. Illinois is in an elite group: the state hosts TWO National Heritage Areas. In addition to the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area, the Illinois and Michigan Canal National Heritage Corridor, christened in 1984 by President Ronald Reagan, draws tens of thousands of tourists to the state yearly.

During a recent episode of ciLiving, Executive Director Sarah Seiler Watson unveiled new signs destined to help advertise the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area along the state’s highways.

As a National Park Service program, some of the living history locations also offer stamps for the Parks’ Passport program.

For more information about visiting sites in the Lincoln Heritage Area, visit

Updated 2017.03.29

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