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Lincoln Log Cabin
402 S. Lincoln Highway Rd
Lerna, Il 62440

Additional Links:

Charleston Tourism
Mattoon Tourism
Illinois Department of Natural Resources


9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Grounds open until dusk



 We are closed on Veteran's Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, News Year's Eve, and New Year's Day

Living History Programming takes place between May 1st and October 31st with additional special events throughout the year. Grounds are open year-round 8:30 am until dusk



Welcome to 1840s Rural Illinois

Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site, part of the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area, preserves the 19th-century home of Thomas Lincoln and Sarah Bush Lincoln, father and step-mother of our 16th president. Abraham Lincoln was a lawyer living in Springfield by the time his parents moved here, but his burgeoning law practice often brought him to Charleston and the farm, especially during the 1840s. Abraham Lincoln also owned a portion of the farm which he deeded back to his father and step-mother for their use during their lifetime.

Today Lincoln Log Cabin is an 86-acre historic site that is owned and operated by the State of Illinois, managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Division of Historic Sites. The site includes an accurate reproduction of the Lincolnsí two-room cabin that was reconstructed on the original cabin site in 1935-1936 as a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) project. The National Park Service oversaw the creation of Lincoln Log Cabin State Park with CCC labor. The CCC camp, Camp Shiloh, was located within the parkís boundaries and its enrollees were WWI veterans. Today the ten acres in the northwest corner of the park where Camp Shiloh was located is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

A working, living history farm has been developed around the cabin, and a second historic farmstead, that of Stephen and Nancy Sargent, has been moved to the site to help broaden visitorsí understanding both of life in the 19th century and Lincolnís legal practice in the community. The site also includes the Moore Home, where Lincoln bid farewell to his family in 1861 before leaving to assume the Presidency, and the gravesites of Thomas and Sarah Lincoln at the Thomas Lincoln Cemetery.

Upcoming Events!

 Weaving Workshop
Thursdays, May 11th, 18th, and 25th, 6:00 to 9:00 pm
Visitor Center Basement

 Weave your own kitchen towels! This workshop for beginning weavers will meet three times, on Thursday, May 11th, 18th, and 25th from 6-9 pm in the Visitor Center Basement. In this course you will learn the basics of multi-shaft looms, how they work, and how to weave on them. From learning to read a weaving draft, to warping and dressing a loom, and on to weaving with confidence, we will cover all the bases. When you are finished you will have 2-3 kitchen towels. If you have been yearning to weave, but not sure where or how to begin, start here at Lincoln Log Cabin. Workshop fee- $95 for all three sessions, all materials included. Register here.


 Made in Central Illinois! Annual Fundraiser
Friday, May 19th, 6:00 pm

 Our annual fundraiser will be hosted at the site featuring locally-sourced food as well as a silent auction with items representing Central Illinois! Join us for heavy hors d'oeuvres from local providers, Illinois wines, and music provided by local band, "We Ain't Misbehavin'". Walk around the site to try different foods and experience the site after-hours! We will also have a silent auction with items made in Central Illinois. $80 per person- Register here.


 Historic Cemetery Preservation Workshop 
Saturday, May 20, 9:30 am
Visitor Center Auditorium

 The Governor Edward Coles- Sally Lincoln NSDAR Chapter, Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation, and the Association for the Preservation of Coles County are hosting a cemetery preservation workshop. The expert instructors are John Heider and Dawn Cobb. John is an accomplished cemetery preservation specialist with decades of experience. Dawn is an archaeologist specializing in cemetery preservation with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Water and snack provided. Please bring gloves and wear appropriate clothing and shoes for outdoor work at the cemetery.  

Register here.



 Thomas Lincoln: Abraham's Father 
Saturday, June 3, 2:00 pm
Visitor Center Auditorium

 Daniel Cravens Taylor, Thomas Lincoln biographer and author of Thomas Lincoln: Abraham's Father, has been studying and researching Abraham Lincoln since he was a child. His interest became centered on Thomas Lincoln upon discovering discrepancies in the historic record and the common portrayal of Thomas in many Lincoln biographies and works. These often portrayed Thomas as lazy, uneducated (and opposed to education), angry, abusive, and poor. But documented interviews with family and friends and the historic documents from his time period reveal a different Thomas. These documents and records compelled Taylor to three years of research, talking to scholars, reading, searching out records, and visiting the sites associated with Thomas Lincoln. Lincoln scholarship is beginning to recognize that the Thomas Lincoln of history is not the Thomas Lincoln given to Lincolniana by William Herndon. Where most scholars spent little time with Thomas eager to get to Lincolnís adult years, they accepted Herndonís interpretation without question and wrote Thomas off. Now, with Herndonís records readily available and many other documents in archives, it is possible to look for the real Thomas. Taylor has spent the time to discover Thomas and will walk us down that path in this presentation.

Enduring Legacy: The Civilian Conservation Corps in Coles County, 1935-1941
This temporary exhibit celebrated the 75th anniversary of Lincoln Log Cabin and was on display in 2011 and 2012. Access the story here

Give a Gift!
How You Can Help

Please consider making a donation to help support the efforts of the Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation in maintaining vital education programming, producing special events, and meeting the needs of Lincoln Log Cabin to continue the preservation of our rural heritage. Click here to download a form for mailing or donate online with your personal credit card:




Stop by the Goosenest Prairie Gift Shop for a souvenir!


    Web site funded and maintained by the Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation © 2023