My sister Debbie and I headed out for an adventure. We found ours in downtown Petersburg, Illinois on the historic square. Looking for a cool place to walk, we parked and struck out in this town with so much history. We learned that the town of Petersburg was actually surveyed by a young Deputy Surveyor in 1835 named Abraham Lincoln. In Menard County, Petersburg is a place where Abraham Lincoln often stayed when he later rode the circuit as a lawyer.
What did we find on our walk?
We noted the beautiful Historical Society Museum of Menard County which is located in the the former Frackelton Bank. Built in 1889 on the corner of Seventh & Jackson in Petersburg, Illinois, this lovely Victorian-styled building is on the west side of the Menard County Courthouse Square. The museum was closed when we were there, we just enjoyed a walk past the lovely architecture.
There is also the fun Hand of Fate a brewery that offers beer brewed onsite. Dr. Ugs cafe inside also has food available as well. Although patrons were outside we didn’t venture in, but just continued on our walk. We have tried the food before and enjoyed it. My daughter and son-in-law have stopped a time or two at the brewery and like the brewery offerings as well. The name alone is a draw for me!
The beautiful Menard County Courthouse is the centerpiece of the square. The Courthouse was built in 1896, by architects George H. Miller and James E. Fiske, and the contractors M. Yeager & Son.
Menard County was formed from the northwest portion of Sangamon County in 1839. The County is named after Pierre Menard the first Lieutenant Governor.
Fitting for Memorial Day Weekend
In front of the Courthouse we found a beautiful memorial stating, “At the end of the days our nation still stands sacred to the memory of all those in the armed forces who have so generously and faithfully served the United States of America. For God and Country.”
This lovely marble stone had flags and flowers as fitting in front of it.
On the square although there were a couple cool shops, our sites were set for Proud Souls Boutique where they offered curbside pickup! I had found they had a shirt that stated “Farm Wife Farm Hand Same Thing” that I had to have along with a necklace that had a farm theme as well. Picking up a few items and carrying a shopping bag almost made me feel like days of old! Go online and you will see all the amazing items they have available.
Our take on the square
What Debbie and I loved was there were dining options, history, places to shop. We even spied a tree in full bloom so a bit of beauty as well. While I am looking forward to the day when everything is open and we can go back to pre-pandemic times, a walk around the Petersburg square offered a fun day out.
So Much More
The area has so much more! There is the Edgar Lee Masters Home and New Salem State park where there is an amazing statue of Lincoln as a surveyor! We even tried to go to New Salem State Park because the website said it is partially open. Partially though didn’t mean the cabin area.
I advise calling to be sure they are really open before heading out. New Salem is well worth the visit when open!
As I have been sharing in my recent blogs, keeping your eyes open will lead to finds in your own backyard. Certainly here in Central Illinois I am unearthing Abraham Lincoln stories everywhere!