Museums

An unprecedented feature of Downtown Lockport is its four museums all within walking distance of one another. These museums hold collections of importance to the city, county, state, and country. From time to time they also host traveling exhibits from as far away as the Smithsonian.

Lockport also has a unique outdoor museum know as the Lincoln Landing. Directly adjacent to the I&M Canal, the Lincoln Landing contains a number of historical markers that visitors can explore.

Nearby Attractions

To the south of Downtown, along the I&M canal path, you will find Lock #1, Lock#2 (It's a bit hidden from the eye, but the adventurous will enjoy looking for it), and the Joliet Iron Works. To the north you will find the Isle A La Cache museum.

 Gaylord Building Historic Site

I&M Canal Visitors Center

The Gaylord Building played a vital role in one of the great enterprises of the 19th century: the Illinois & Michigan Canal.  A landmark since 1838, its many tenants and uses exemplify the canal’s commercial success as the key to mastery of the American mid-continent.  This handsome limestone warehouse originally stored canal construction materials and later housed a variety of commercial ventures.  Today it is a national example of adaptive re-use and serves as a gateway to the I&M Canal National Heritage Corridor.  Guests can explore the heritage of the region in the exhibition galleries, and dine in the renowned Public Landing Restaurant.

The Gaylord Building is a historic site of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Gallery Hours: Monday - Friday   9:00 am until 5:00 pm
                     Saturday - 10:00 am until 5:00 pm
                     Sunday -   11:00 am until 5:00 pm
                     (closed Mondays and major holidays)
ADMISSION IS FREE

200 W. 8th Street
(815) 838-9400
gaylordbuilding.org

Will County Historical Society

Will County Historical Society

Located in the original 1837 Canal headquarters building, the Illinois and Michigan Canal Museum offers 10 rooms filled with artifacts, pictures and documents relating to the construction and operation of the Canal, as well as period items specific to the region during the height of the Canal’s operation. Staff members guide visitors through the exhibits. Admission is free. Groups who wish to visit the museum can make reservations.

Hours: 1 to 4:30 p.m.
closed mid-December to early January

803 South State Street
(815)838-5080
www.willcountyhistory.org

 Illinois State Museum

Illinois State Museum

The Lockport Gallery celebrates Illinois through changing exhibits featuring paintings, drawings, sculptures, quilts and other media created by the state’s artists and artisans. These rotating, theme-based exhibits are supplemented and showcased through educational events, group tours and outreach programs for all ages.

An Illinois State Museum (ISM) facility, the Lockport Gallery is located in a structure that is itself a work of art and history. The historic Norton Building was constructed on the banks of the Illinois and Michigan Canal in 1850 to serve as a grain-processing facility. Today the building is a multi-use facility housing residential lofts, offices, commercial space and the Lockport Gallery. The Gallery’s space gracefully incorporates the building’s original features, including large windows — once arched portals used for loading and unloading — high ceilings and hardwood floors.

Hours: Monday - Friday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM, Sundays Noon - 5:00 PM.

201 West 10th Street
(815)838-7400
www.museum.state.il.us/ismsites/lockport/

Gladys Fox

Gladys Fox Museum

Maintained by the Lockport Township Park District, the Gladys Fox Museum is located in the 1839 Old Congregational Church. Beautifully restored, this historic building is now home to the museum’s collection of historical photographs and memorabilia celebrating Dellwood Park and the Illinois and Michigan Canal.

Hours: Vary; Call
closed mid-December to early January

803 South State Street
(815)838-1183
http://www.lockportpark.org/gladys_museum.php

Lincoln Landing

 Lincoln Landing

Newly constructed by the Give Something Back Foundation, the Lincoln Landing is a spectacular open air park and museum. The park shows the original I & M Canal lines with a statue of Lincoln contemplating the canal. Bronze medallions are placed all about the park with historical information. Each medallion then leads you to another with connected information.

Lesson plans for students are available at http://www.lewisu.edu/Lincoln_landing/index.htm

The Lincoln Landing is maintained by the Will County Historical Society.