Visitors to the National Road Interpretive Center in Vandalia can experience this historic road through the eyes of those who built the road and later traveled it.
Some highlights include:
- Conestoga wagon model
- An 1830s era timber from the original National Road
- Interactive map
- Lincoln on the National Road room with Lincoln logs
- Mannequins representing a surveyor and wagon teamster
- Vintage photos of communities along the National Road
Researchers can access books and documents about the National Road.
Group tours for schools, churches, bus tourists and others may be arranged by calling (618) 283-9380.
The National Road Interpretive Center in Illinois opened on February 12, 2009, in conjunction with Abraham Lincoln’s 200th birthday celebration. Lincoln’s political career began as a member of the Illinois House of Representatives, serving at the Statehouse in Vandalia. The Center is located in Vandalia because it was the original terminus of the National Road. Local foundation grants and fund-raising assisted in launching the project. A FHWA scenic byway grant secured in 2009 provided money needed to complete the center.