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Ellwood House Museum

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Address: 509 N 1st St, DeKalb, IL 60115-3232
Phone Number: (815) 756-4609

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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    Very good
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Learn about life in the Gilded Age plus the history of the manufacture of barbed wire in Dekalb 'the barb city'.

A fascinating look at how the wealthy lived in Illinois. The family history and furnishing are all kept intact and are explained by highly trained docents who impart not only the... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed yesterday
DeKalb, Illinois
via mobile
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50 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 50: English reviews
DeKalb, Illinois
Level Contributor
14 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW via mobile

A fascinating look at how the wealthy lived in Illinois. The family history and furnishing are all kept intact and are explained by highly trained docents who impart not only the family history but also the important role of Barb wire and 'oil' which built the mansion and paid for all the furnishings --most of which are original as the... More 

Thank stevenjohnson2016
East Peoria,IL
Level Contributor
79 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2016

Issac Ellwood saw a good thing when he got into business with Jacob Haish and produced barbed wire. The Ellwood House mansion was built by Issac Ellwood for his family. He and his wife lived in the house until passing away in 1910. Perry Ellwood and his wife inherited the home at that time. The home is restored to the... More 

Thank LAAEastPeoria_IL
DeKalb, IL
Level Contributor
107 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2016 via mobile

The Ellwood House is an ornate, well preserved late 19th century mansion. It is opulent without being gaudy, and it is well worth visiting. It is the kind of place you drive by and wish you could live there. Although I wouldn't want to after going through:. Great museum, not necessarily a place to move into!

Thank eggbert_tg
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2016 via mobile

Very nice informative and fun tour So interesting to learn the past history about families and how the came up with the barb wire idea

Thank Linda A
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
146 reviews
81 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2016

Ellwood did not invent barbed wire but he sure knew what do to with it and the house he built shows it. Superb wood lines the entrance hall, an Venetian blown glass chandelier hangs in the stairwell. The stained glass windows look to be from the 1920s. The living room fireplace is of Caen limestone, imported from France probably around... More 

Thank Rolf A
DeKalb, Illinois
Level Contributor
26 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2016

I went on a tour with my son who had missed the school trip while he was out sick. We had a great tour of a turn of the past century mansion. Ellwood House is the centrally located Mansion of the family of one of the inventors of the trademarked barbed wire for fencing. It is a beautifully maintained home... More 

Thank Beth P
DeKalb, Illinois
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2016

We live nearby this historic mansion. It is furnished and decorated with many original pieces of furniture as well as a number of personal possessions from the family that lived in it. It is sometimes characterized as "the house barbed wire built". Guided tours available for a reasonable fee. Check the website for hours. This beautiful turn-of-the-century home sits in... More 

Thank 578raymondc
Sandwich, Illinois
Level Contributor
70 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2016

Fascinating old house and museum in old DeKalb, IL. Well worth your time. I can't remember if it was handi-cap friendly or not, better call ahead. It is part of the fascinating history of old DeKalb, IL "The Barbed Wire Capital".

Thank Cadet62
Level Contributor
26 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2015 via mobile

I've been to Ellwood house many times over the years. The barb wire history portion is nice and informative. But it is the beautiful mansion that makes an outing worthwhile. By far, holiday time is the best time to go. Love all the decorations and history.

1 Thank Patrick H
DeKalb, Illinois
Level Contributor
15 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2015

this house museum in Dekalb Illnois is worth a side trip if you are anywhere in the area. It is extremely well done, furnished in the time period it was lived in, with lovely gardens and intriguing outbuildings, including a child sized house that kids can walk through, adults too if they bend over a bit. The tour was well... More 

Thank Irene R

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