Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site

Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site

Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site
4.5
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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About
Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site is a CCC reproduction of the early 19th century New Salem, where Abraham Lincoln spent over 6 years of his life at as a young man. The site is owned and operated by the State of Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
362 reviews
Excellent
220
Very good
109
Average
23
Poor
6
Terrible
4

Michelle R
Elgin, IL363 contributions
Jun 2021
Make sure you visit when the Interpreters are working! I went on Friday, June 11. It seemed like there were more Interpreters and Interns (it was the Interns' second week) than guests. They are in costume and can tell you lots of information about New Salem and Lincoln as well as what they are doing (making lye soap or barrels, for instance). You can even meet Lincoln's cousin and he will help complete the story! I recommend starting with the inside museum and the short film. There are bathrooms inside the visitor's center and you can also pick up a map that explains the various buildings. There were quite a few mosquitos on my visit so that prevented me from exploring the hiking trails outside the village (I didn't bring bug spray). The gift shop was newly reopened. The resturant was closed. There are plenty of picnic tables outside in the shade for guests to eat a picnic lunch before or after their village visit. Donations are accepted. Not including lunch, I spent 2.5 hours here on a solo visit but I talked to several of the Interpreters and Interns.
Written June 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Donna W
Fallston, MD200 contributions
Sep 2022 • Couples
Excellent historic site and it's free! There was a great movie about Lincoln's life in New Salem, a nice little museum, and then the recreated village with costumed interpreters. The village was rebuilt in 1933 by the CCC. Descendants of the residents of New Salem were asked if they had any items they wanted to donate, and so there are several original items in the village. Highly recommend if you love Lincoln or American history in general.
Written September 28, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jim P
Chicago, IL19 contributions
Oct 2022 • Family
The candlelight walk through the town offers a unique view of the town itself because you have characters telling you about the individuals who lived at this site. If you go during the day time, there's no characters, but you can still look at and read about what the town looked like and the individuals who lived there. It's a very interesting take on 1800s life in Central Illinois.
Written December 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Discobear
Lafayette, IN363 contributions
Jul 2021
This is about a 30 minute drive from Springfield. The visitor center is very nice, with a small museum, nice restrooms, and a 17 minute orientation film.

We were there on a Tuesday morning, and there were only a few other tourists. There are 23 buildings, all faithfully reconstructed on the original site. (Maybe not all.)
But a lot of research went into creating this reconstruction.

Only 4 buildings had interpreters, all of whom were knowledgeable and did a good job. Many buildings weren’t open, but you could look in and read the signs explaining things.

Due to time restraints we didn’t visit the gift shop. The docent at the front desk was excellent. He as able to answer all of our questions.

If we had paid to park or enter, we would have been disappointed, but it’s all free.

Tip: bring mosquito spray
Written July 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jan B
Boise, ID378 contributions
Aug 2022 • Couples
My experience was only a 3, but this is mainly because it was raining buckets off and on during my visit, so the outdoor portion of this historic site was not enjoyable. The short film on Lincoln and the visitors center was very educational and interesting. I didn’t know that Lincoln only had 1 year of formal education and taught himself law to become a lawyer.He came from such humble means, but kept striving to find his true mission. He endured some difficult hardships but he didn’t give up.
Written August 4, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

507adventurelover
Port Washington, Wisconsin227 contributions
May 2021
Only three volunteers were available during my visit at the end of the COVID pandemic, but they were great! The variety of buildings and information was well worth the trip to New Salem. We spent approximately three hours leisurely visiting the visitor and walking and perusing everything. Up the road toward Petersburg is a replica of the boat that took Lincoln to New Salem.
Written May 21, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Lisa2449
Barcelona, Spain3 contributions
Feb 2020 • Couples
Well-researched and completely authentic replica of village where young pioneer Abraham Lincoln worked and made relationships that shaped his life. The buildings and grounds are entirely realistic. Wear shoes that can take you up and down gravel paths safely, especially if you wish to see the river landing where the flatboats would dock and launch.
Written February 17, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

BWtravels
WI88 contributions
Mar 2021 • Family
Learned quite a bit on this stop. Cold day and few buildings were open, but great signage and brochure for those we couldn't go in to. Neat place, would recommend the spot for about an hour of exploring. Looks like the state should put some funds into rehabbing this site. A shame to see some parts literally falling down.
Written March 28, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

railfan84
Elkhart, IN30 contributions
Jul 2022
My girlfriend and I first visited in 2014 and decided to visit again this time with our 7 year old son. All I can say is my oh my how this place has went downhill. The gift shop was closed, only a few buildings had interpreters and each of them looked bored. The steps leading to the mill were closed as was the mill itself which looked like it was about to collapse. The visitor center was very clean and does provide you with a detailed timeline of Lincoln's early adult life. Not sure if I would ever visit again?
Written July 16, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

barkus1968
Saint Louis, MO4,204 contributions
Sep 2020 • Friends
Well - in the time of Covid, this place is dead. :-). I still enjoyed wandering outside the buildings. This 1832 village on the Sangamon River is quite cool. Well worth the drive from anywhere in the continental U.S.
Written September 20, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site (Petersburg) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site

Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site is open:
  • Sun - Sat 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM


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