Visitors Guide to the
Alton Museum of History and Art
2809 College Avenue
Alton, Illinois

Street Parking Accessible Interpretive Exhibits Accessible Illinois Historic Site

The Alton Museum of History and Art was founded in 1971 to preserve the rich heritage of Altonís past. Through a variety of exhibits visitors can discover the people, places, and events that helped shaped the city of Alton and its neighbors. The museum is housed at two locations. The first is Loomis Hall (photo above) and is the oldest building in the State of Illinois that has been continuously dedicated to education. Founded in 1832 by the Baptist Church, the building became part of Shurtleff College and then the dental school of Southern Illinois University of Edwardsville.
There are several exhibit spaces on the first floor of Loomis Hall. The Wadlow Room pays tribute to one of Altonís most cherished citizenís Ė Altonís Gentle Giant, Robert Pershing Wadlow, the tallest man on record. The interactive exhibit is a favorite with visitors of all ages and is the only exhibit approved and supported by the Wadlow family. A life size statue of Wadlow is located just across the street (photo right.) The Pioneer Room explores history from the Lewis and Clark Expedition to the end of the Civil War. The early nineteenth century found Alton at the center of national events with the assassination of Elijah Lovejoy, the final Lincoln-Douglas debate, and the establishment of the Underground Railroad. Through the museumís collection of art and artifacts the visitor will feel the impact of this pivotal time in American history.
The Grace Monroe Classroom is dedicated to education but is also used as an art gallery where fine art of diverse media is on display. Images and objects presented by local and regional artists range from abstract to realism and reflect the rich multi-cultural heritage of the Riverbend region. Special exhibits organized by artists such as the annual ArtEast show are permitted from time to time. Additional exhibits on the second floor include a small river room filled with memorabilia of the Eagle Packet Company, Streckfus Steamers and other boats. Included is the ornate cash register from the Eagle Boat Store, the engine room bell from the Streckfus steamer, Captain Buck Leyheīs cap and megaphone and more. The stairway to the second floor is dedicated to the local legend of the Piasa Bird.
The first floor is handicap accessible for the Wadlow Exhibit, the Pioneer Room, the Grace Monroe Classroom, and the Gift Shop. The Koenig House, located at 829 E. Fourth Street, is the museumís second facility.

Visiting the Alton Museum of History and Art
     Visiting Hours
Wednesdays - Saturdays: 10 am - 4 pm
          Sundays: 1 pm - 4 pm

          Please call in advance to confirm that the museum is  open

Admission:  Adults: $5, Children: $1, Senior Citizens $2.50 on Wednesdays

Directions: The Alton Museum of History and Art is located at 2809 College Avenue. Coming from Missouri over the Clark Bridge turn right and get in left lane. Turn left at the stop light. This will take you into Broadway. Go to the traffic light on Washington, turn left and go to College Ave. Take a right on College Avenue and go approximately 3 blocks to the museum. From IL-3 North: Exit at the College Avenue (IL-140) exit and travel west approximately eight blocks to the museum. There is limited parking in back of the museum and parking on the street.

GPS Coordinates
N  38  54.219
W 90  08.666

Visit the art trail section for more art related attractions and events in the Middle Mississippi River Valley.

Learn more about the Alton area. - Official site of the Alton Museum of History and Art

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