Things to Do in Quincy, Illinois

If you are looking for things to do in Quincy, Illinois, you will be happy to find various activities, from museums to historic sites.

The most notable attractions include the Clat Adams Bicentennial Park, the All Wars Museum, the Quincy Art Center, and the Villa Kathrine. Each provides a unique experience for visitors.

Quincy, Illinois, is a gem of a city in western Illinois. The town is situated along the Mississippi River and offers family-friendly fun through entertainment hubs, museums, and historic buildings.

Best places to visit in Quincy, Illinois

Quincy is the seat of government for Adams County. In addition, it is the home of the Quincy Cathedral and Brewing Company, making it a perfect venue for special celebrations. For a complete look at the area’s history, visit the Quincy Museum.

Here, you can browse thousands of artifacts and exhibits spanning over a century. You can also check out the museum’s stunning fireplaces and displays on Native American culture and dinosaurs.

Quincy Museum

Located on Quincy, the Quincy Museum is part of the historic Newcomb-Stillwell mansion. This 14,000-square-foot building was constructed in the Richardson Romanesque Revival Style. The first floor has been restored to recreate Victorian mansion life in the 1890s.

Exhibits on the second and third floors focus on Native American cultures, wildlife, and the area’s natural history. Visitors can also view the collections of the Quincy Historical Society. These include manuscripts, pamphlets, photographs, and audiovisual materials.

Richard F. Newcomb House, Quincy Museum
Richard F. Newcomb House, Quincy Museum

Quincy’s History Shop, located in the History Museum on the Square, offers the most significant local history books. Items for sale include books about Abraham Lincoln, Stephen A. Douglas, the Underground Railroad, and more.

In addition to the museum’s exhibits, the Quincy Museum hosts a variety of educational programs. For example, its annual Folk Life Festival is free to attend. Visitors can learn about Quincy’s history during the festival and watch demonstrations. Also, a bounce house and old-time crafts will be featured.

John Wood Mansion

The Governor John Wood Mansion in Quincy, Illinois, is a fine example of Greek revival architecture. It was constructed by Quincy’s founding father, John Wood, in 1835-1837. The Historical Society of Quincy and Adams County now owns the house. This organization has restored the house over the years. Some of the original rooms remain.

Visitors can tour the house’s 14 rooms. The house was initially built with an octagonal shape but was later expanded to the rear.

There is an impressive Colonial Revival porch on the south side of the house. A visitor center is located on the first floor of the building. This center features audiovisual, library, and group meeting rooms. Also on the first floor is the Lincoln Gallery.

A partial view of the John Wood Mansion in Quincy.
A partial view of the John Wood Mansion in Quincy.

On the second floor is the Research Library. The lower level houses archives for the society’s permanent collection. On the front, a two-story Doric portico is a simple form. The gable end features a sizeable elliptical window. In the interior, there is a matching balcony behind the columns.

The building also features a ramped entrance. During the Civil War, John Wood served as the quartermaster general for Illinois. He married Mary Ann Holmes in 1863. They had a daughter, Ann Williams Black, who contributed to the funding for the house.

All Wars Museum

The All Wars Museum is one of the most famous museums in the city and for a good reason. It’s the kind of place where visitors don’t have to go far to get a jolt of edutainment. While it’s not as grand as the Smithsonian or the National Gallery of Art, the institution will keep you occupied for hours.

Best tourist attractions in Quincy, Illinois

The All Wars Museum isn’t just about oohing and aahing over exhibits. More practically, the museum has a deer park if you’re into such things. First, however, you should know that it’s also the home of the Illinois Veterans Home, the state’s largest veterans’ residence.

One of the first things you’ll notice is that the museum is on the grounds of the Illinois Veterans Home at Quincy. This is the largest of the four veteran’s homes in the state and is also one of the few that’s been around since the turn of the century.

Quincy Art Center

The Quincy Art Center, located at 1515 Jersey Street, has a variety of exhibitions and activities. It is open from 11 am to 6 pm, Wednesday through Saturday. You can also join an education class to learn about the visual arts. Some of the center’s events include free hands-on art projects, demonstrations, and a collaborative mural.

Things to do in Quincy, Illinois

A recent exhibition featured works by Carlos Zamora. He will be on hand at the center to talk about his work. Another event is the Art Center’s scavenger hunt. Those who participate can earn a spot in the art exhibit.

Located within the east-end historic district, the center of visual arts features contemporary midwestern art. The center hosts various events and is home to the Katharine Gardner Stevenson Gallery, the Jack W. Boge Library, and the Elizabeth M. Sinnock Gallery.

Villa Kathrine

Villa Kathrine is a unique castle built in 1900 and located on the bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River in Quincy, Illinois. This historic building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is home to the Tourist Information Center for the city of Quincy.

Although it’s not an official museum, this castle is open to the public and is the site of an educational tour. It’s also a site for scheduled tours. There are even volunteer guides who take visitors through the house.

Villa Kathrine, Quincy, IL
Villa Kathrine, Quincy, IL

The structure is based on a Moorish villa in Morocco. George Metz, a world traveler, constructed the building. He loved Mediterranean architecture.

George Metz lived at the house for twelve years. When he died, he was buried on the grounds. Many people have said that there was a ghost at the house. Others have reported objects disappearing and footsteps pacing around the pool.

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