• Inside the Lincoln Sitting Room

    Lincoln Home

    National Historic Site Illinois

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  • Lincoln Home Tours During Busy Season

    Please be advised that tours of the Lincoln home fill rapidly during our busy summer season. We suggest that you visit the Lincoln Home National Historic Visitor Center early in the day for your best opportunity to receive a tour of the Lincoln home.

Animals

Squirrel

Squirrel perched on fence

NPS photo

The diverstiy and abundance of fauna at Lincoln Home National Historic Site has undergone dramatic changes since pre-settlement times. The elk (Cervus elaphus), bison (Bison bison), and black bear (Ursus americana), that roamed the prairies and grasslands of central Illinois, have experienced severe population changes.

In the early 1800s, pioneers developed the land into farms and the settlers introduced domesticated livestock to the area. As livestock grazed the grasslands, they changed the face of the tallgrass prairie. The pioneers hunted many of the wild game species such as: Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus), white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), and Greater Prairie Chicken(Tympanuchus cupido), which was often found on the dinner table of local residents and at the Lincoln Home.

Today most visitors are likely to see Eastern cottontails (Sylvilagus floridanus), cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis), and an occasional red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)on site. Many species such as red bats (Lasiurus borealis), Eastern chipmunk (Tamias striatus), and fox squirrel (Sciurus niger), have easily adapted to a changing habitat.

Many invasive species have also made their way into the area. European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) to name one, are a common sight. The various forms of wildlife at Lincoln Home National Historic Site find suitable habitat in the shrubs and trees of the Lincoln Home neighborhood. Every now and then, a Virginia oppossum (Didelphis virginiana) is found under a porch or in a storage building.
 

Did You Know?

Election Flag, 1864

Lincoln insisted on having the 1864 election in the midst of war. "You can not have free government without elections...if the rebellion could force us to forgo a national election, it might fairly claim to have already conquered and ruined us." Lincoln Home National Historic Site, Illinois