Doors Open Illinois at Vandalia

Join us Saturday, August 11 from 9am – 4pm and Sunday August 12 from 9am – 2pm in Vandalia.

Come Visit:

Illinois’ Oldest Statehouse and meet Mr. Lincoln and some of the first legislatures to serve in this building.  315 W. Gallatin St.

Fayette County Museum and view Lincoln items and those used during his time in Vandalia.  301 W. Main St.

National Road Interpretive Center: Learn what, when and where Mr. Lincoln was on the National Road — The Road That Built The Nation! 106 S. Fifth St.

First Presbyterian Church and rign the first bell that was rung at a protestant church in Illinois, view the History Closet and on Sunday Morning at 9am join us for worship where Mr. Lincoln may have worshiped.  1221 W. Fillmore St.

The Little Red Caboose and see what it was like to work on the end of the train in the 1940’s.  Also, what the railroad did for Illinois and what Mr. Lincoln did for the Illinois Central Railroad.  Corner of Johnson and S. Fifth St.

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National Road Interpretive Center to Celebrate 20 Year Anniversary

The National Road association of Illinois has it’s office right here in Vandalia, located at 106 S. 5th in conjunction with the National Road Interpretive Center.   The Associations is celebrating  its 20th  anniversary this year with a special open house during Olde Tyme Christmas.

The Association was formed to bring the communities along the National Road (US RT. 40) in Illinois, to preserve its history and educate our current population.

The congressional bill to build the road was signed by President Thomas Jefferson on March 29th, 1806.  It is the only totally federally funded highway ever built in this country.  It was built  to provide our citizens a more convenient way to spread out across our vast country to prevent other countries from trying to steal our land and to make more raw materials available to our factories on the east coast.

The National Road was to go as straight as possible across the country and to go through the State Capitals of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri.  It never reached Missouri because it stopped here in Vandalia,  then the capital of Illinois, when the money ran out

The road was begun again in 1910 and was made up of all the existing roads and trails that stretched across our county and was called the Old National Trails Road.  It was then attached to the National  Road and became our first road all the way across our country. 

Because so many people used the road and populated our country it became known as The Road That Built The Nation.

The National Road Association of Illinois hopes to educate our current population in how our country was built, how the various cultures were utilized and shared and built our nation.

You are invited – so please come – to the  National Road Interpretive Center (between City Hall and the railroad) 106 S. 5th St. on Friday, November 10 (Olde Tyme Christmas) to help the National Road Association celebrate their 20th anniversary from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. 

Refreshments will be served.

Download Official Press Release Here

For more inquiries, Contact:
Mary Truitt

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National Road Interpretive Center Adds Mural to Vandalia Dowtown

The National Road Interpretive Center in Vandalia, Illinois is happy to share the painting of a new mural in Downtown Vandalia.  The mural will be on the corner of 6th street and Gallatin on the side of the Fastenal building.

A group called the Wall Dogs will be in town starting Thursday, June 22, 2017 to paint a Transportation Themed Mural.

Why a transportation themed mural?

Vandalia was on the main line of the Illinois Central Railroad that crossed through the Vandalia Depot in the 1920s.

The IL Central started coming through Vandalia in 1854, adding the St.Louis to Vandalia to Terre Haute West route in 1867.  The Illinois Central Rail Road would ultimately become the Pennsylvania railroad.

The slogan chosen for the train crossing mural is “Nation’s Crossroads” which is the slogan that has been used in Vandalia for many years and featured on many of the high school graduate’s class rings.

Who are the Wall Dogs?

If you’ve ever been traveling and seen ads on the sides of barns they were most likely put on buildings by the wall dogs.  These men were hired to paint ads and because they painted on walls and worked so hard were termed Wall Dogs.

Stop by the corner of 6th Street and Gallatin in Vandalia and see the new mural being painted which should be completed in a short time.

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Treasures on the Trail – June 4, 2016

Join us in Vandalia, Illinois on June 4, 2016 for Treasures on the Trail.

Bring your treasures to sell at the MALL OF TREASURES on Saturday June 4 from 8am to 4pm.  The Mall is also known as the parking lot around Vandalia City Hall.  A stall will be 9’x17′ for $10.  Make your reservations at the National Interpretive Center, 106 S. 5th St. by May 20.  Please pay when making your reservation.  NO CLOTHING FOR SALE PLEASE!


The Vandalia Down Town Busineses will have a Sidewalk Sale the same day

The Historical Society will be selling souvenirs at Illinois’ Oldest Capitol Building.

The Fayette County Museum will have Goodies and Treasures in the Garden.

Our Historical Treasures (building) will also be open for tours –

Illinois Oldest Capitol Building – 315 W. Gallatin St.

Fayette County Museum – 301 W. Main St.

National Road Interpretive Center – 106 S. 5th St.

Little Brick House (Example of 1860’s home) – 626 W. St. Clair St.


Maps for tours of the city may be obtained from the National Road Intrepetive Center

Downtown Restaurants – Lucky’s, Capitol View, Copper Penny, and JJ’s. (other restaurants available on the North side of town)


Questions, Call 618-283-9380 – 10am – 4pm.

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WWII & Vietnam War Re-Enactment

When: October 10, 2015
Where: Sonnoman Park, Vandalia, IL

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Lincoln Heritage Festival

When: July 11-12, 2015
Where: Rogier and Mark Greer Parks, Vandalia, IL – 11am – 4pm

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Law Dogs Gathering

When: June 20-21, 2015

More information Coming Soon!

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Relay for Life

When: June 6, 2015
Where: Rogier Park, Vandalia, IL – 11am – 11pm

Click Here to view the Relay for Life Fayette County Information

The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is the world’s largest and most impactful fundraising event to end cancer. It unites communities across the globe to celebrate people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and take action to finish the fight once and for all. Today, with the support of thousands of volunteers like you, the American Cancer Society is helping save more than 400 lives a day. And we won’t stop until we finish the fight against cancer! Please join us!

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Armed Forces Tribute

When: May 16, 2015

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