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“A place to discover the early influences on Lincoln’s life”

Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial hosts the site of the farm where the 16th president of the U.S. spent the majority of his youth.
Reviewed August 6, 2018

This 200-acre memorial preserves the farm site where Abraham Lincoln lived with his family from 1816 to 1830. During that time, he matured from a seven-year-old boy to a 21-year-old man. His mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, died in October 1818 of milk sickness when Abraham was nine and was buried in the Pioneer Cemetery, which is on the property. His sister, Sarah Lincoln Grigsby, died during childbirth in 1826 and was buried in the nearby Little Pigeon Baptist Church cemetery, across the street in Lincoln State Park.

The centerpiece of the memorial is a one-story limestone museum building which features five bas-relief sculpture panels portraying different phases of Lincoln’s life on the exterior of the building. Inside, there’s a small theater featuring a 16-minute film about Lincoln’s life in Indiana narrated by Leonard Nimoy. The museum also includes several exhibits and artifacts relating to Lincoln’s life, which are located in an adjoining hall.

From the museum, it’s about a 15-minute walk past the flagpole and through the woods past the pioneer cemetery to the actual Lincoln farmstead site. Believe it or not, the foundation logs of the original cabin have been bronzed. Not far from the actual cabin site is the Lincoln Living Historical Farm, which features a cabin and small farm similar to what the Lincoln’s would have been like. Guess on the day in early May when we visited the reenactors in period clothing weren’t working yet, because we never saw any.

We took a different way back to the visitor’s center; what they call the Trail of 12 Stones. This is another trail through the woods, but along the way, they’ve placed stones from a dozen important places in Lincoln’ life. These include the place he was born in Kentucky, the house across from Ford’s Theater where he died, stones from the foundation of the White House, and more. There are explanations for each, and they’re interesting, and must have taken a lot of effort to put together back in the 1930s.

The grounds where pleasant, and this was a nice natural place for a spring walk. I think the importance of this place today is the opportunity to learn more about where Lincoln came from and what influenced him. Some of those influences that came into play in this place include: his axe, hard work, exposure to the slave trade, reading, and getting to know some lawyers.

Thank Dmarkwind
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"his mother"
in 20 reviews
"visitor center"
in 21 reviews
"working farm"
in 18 reviews
"living history"
in 10 reviews
"formative years"
in 6 reviews
"boyhood home"
in 9 reviews
"his life"
in 11 reviews
"grew up"
in 7 reviews
"orientation video"
in 2 reviews
"great historical place"
in 2 reviews
"arrived late in the day"
in 2 reviews
"national park service"
in 2 reviews
"minute film"
in 4 reviews
"period clothing"
in 2 reviews
"historic farm"
in 5 reviews
"grave site"
in 4 reviews
"live animals"
in 3 reviews
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Reviewed August 1, 2018 via mobile

We stumbled on this hidden gem as we were heading to be tourist in Santa Claus IN. It became a pleasant and extremely informative experience. As a Hoosier, I always knew that Honest Abe had been inspired by his childhood upbringing in Southern Indiana. However, I’d never had the opportunity or honor to fully understand both the challenges and obstacles our 16th president had faced during these formative years.
I encourage every true Hoosier to invest the time to gain a greater understanding & full appreciation of this incredible man and his family. You’ll be glad you did!!

Thank A2coolcity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 31, 2018

I talked my husband into going to the memorial after we were disappointed that nothing in Santa Claus, Indiana was open. He toured the memorial and was totally impressed with the information. We did not have our wheelchair with us so we couldn't do much there but a park ranger stopped and talked with us. She gave me more info on the.park and gave me information regarding the Senior and handicapped passes to the National Parks. She also gave me a copy of Lincoln's genealogy after I told her of my connection to the Lincoln family. This is one park that we come back to time after time. Unfortunately we were on a time restrant or we would have spent more time here. This park made up for the disappointment that we had in Santa Claus. Next time it will be a destination.

Thank infonellie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2018 via mobile

The museum and park are great stops in Southern Indiana. The 15 minute video, narrated by Leonard Nimoy, was a good depiction of Lincoln in Indiana. The trail was nice to walk with no issues. The junior ranger program was fun for the kids as well. Our family enjoyed around a 2 hour stay here.

1  Thank PresidentsTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 5, 2018

First a tip: Wear comfortable shoes and bring snacks. This is an awesome memorial and you will walk at over a mile in total to take the minimum tour. There is no where to get snacks for kids so make sure you bring snacks and drinks with you.

There are two parking lots; one at the museum and one at the trails. There is a permanent port-a-potty style bathroom at the trail parking lot and there is a bathroom in the museum. There is not a bathroom at the living farm.

We parked at the trails and walked to the museum. In between the two is Mrs. Lincoln's grave site. The trails are steep(ish) and is probably not for those who have difficulty in walking. The trails are clean of debris and are nice trails, just a bit steep for those with bad knees. From this parking spot to the museum is just over 1/2 a mile.
From the Museum to the living farm is about 3/4 of a mile.

The museum is very nicely done and has a ton of information about the family and not just President Lincoln, which we found very educational. The park rangers were just awesome and very helpful. There is a 15 minute movie about the president's childhood that plays every 30 mins. It was nicely done and is narrated by Leonard Nimoy (Mr. Spock).

The living farm was by far our favorite part of this location! The actors are incredibly knowledgeable about both the time period and the Lincoln's life. I was surprised to learn they are volunteers and are not paid employees. This is passion work for them. We spoke with one gal in-particular, we never got her name unfortunately, and she was just the best. She spoke with us for over 30 minutes and answered every question our children had. She even demonstrated a lot of chores for us.

The kids were most surprised to learn about peg work and how the Lincoln's were able to climb upstairs. We were most surprised to learn about farming in that time period including the dangers of Black Panthers in Indiana!

If you enjoy history at all you can simply spend all day here and never get bored. We spent 2 1/2 hours here and enjoyed every minute of it. We did not do the Trail of Twelve Stones which is a mile of educational trail. Due to the heat the kids were done and needed some AC. Had we brought drinks and snacks we'd have been okay.

This really is a place to come check out when you visit Holiday World. We stayed at Rudolph's Resort and this was only a 20 minute drive from our cabin's door. With four kids aged 10 -19 we all had a great family time.

Remember to wear comfortable shoes too, you'll need them. The attraction here is free by the way. The gift shop does have magnets, knickknacks for kids, and literature on the Lincolns. This is a national park so you can get your national park passport stamped here.

2  Thank Christmasoncrestline
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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