The Rock County Historical Society is a resource for historical research, thought-provoking programming, and one-of-a-kind historic sites. At its center is the Lincoln-Tallman House, an Italianate-style mansion that was constructed in 1857 and occupied by William Morrison Tallman, a lawyer and abolitionist. Abraham Lincoln visited in October of 1859 prior to his election in 1860. A variety of themed tours of the Lincoln-Tallman House are available. The Traditional Tour narrative will focus on how a prosperous Victorian family would have lived, weaving in stories about the Tallman family. In November and December, come for the Lincoln-Tallman House Holiday Tour with the house decked out in its holiday finery. NO HOLIDAY TOURS IN 2020. Instead, drive past or park and walk around the campus to view more than 100 brightly lit Christmas trees throughout the grounds.
The Helen Jeffris Wood Museum Center offers exhibit galleries that feature Pauline Pottery and Pickard China, as well as rotating exhibits celebrating the history and heritage of Rock County, including new exhibits in 2019. Parker Pen World features some of the most popular Parker pens in history, a collection of old ads and memorabilia, and music from the Parker Pen Band. The See Rock County! exhibit allows visitors to experience life as a Rock County tourist in the early 1900s. Selfies are encouraged at a host of stations, including in the 1923 Chevrolet Superior Series B Phaeton convertible and on an old-fashioned sleigh. Guests are also welcome to share their own stories and memories throughout the exhibit. A new Historic Campaign Memorabilia exhibit, running through January 31, 2021, showcases political campaign collectibles features national and local election buttons, posters, matchbooks, political handouts, letters and more ranging from 1897 through 2012, thanks to a collaborative effort between RCHS and the family members of George and Virginia Kowal (Kealey). Also visit the gift shop, which offers a variety of souvenirs and gifts, including postcards, books, Lincoln and Civil War memorabilia, 19th century toys and games, and more. The newly designed gift shop features dozens of art pieces from Janesville Art League members and other regional artists selling on consignment. Visitors will also discover unique holiday ornaments, bags of holiday gifts, an assortment of locally made masks, an entire section of 'recycled Santa' pieces, and a wide selection of jewelry including costume pieces, fine jewelry, and collectibles. The gift shop is open November 12 - December 23, Thurs & Fri 11 AM to 7 PM and Sat & Sun 11 AM to 5 PM, plus special hours December 21, 22 & 23, 11 AM to 7 PM, or call to make an appointment.
Next door, the Charles Tallman Archives & Research Center contains historical documents, photographs, and other resources for genealogy and historical research and inquiry.
See the Rock County Historical Society website for facility hours and tour times.
OPEN FOR EXHIBITS BY APPOINTMENT. THE CHARLES TALLMAN ARCHIVES STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS CONTINUE TO CONDUCT RESEARCH REQUESTS REMOTELY. IN THE MEANTIME, DRIVE PAST TO SEE THE CREATIVELY DECORATED HEARTS AND COLORFUL SIGNS DISPLAYED ON THE RCHS CAMPUS ACROSS THE STREET FROM MERCYHEALTH HOSPITAL AND TRAUMA CENTER, IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE JANESVILLE ART LEAGUE AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS.
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426 N Jackson St - Janesville - WI, 53548
(608) 756-4509 Fax: