Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

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Illinois Historic Preservation Agency sites map (2012)

The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency is a governmental agency of the U.S. state of Illinois. It is tasked with the duty of maintaining most State-owned historic sites within its borders, as well as the State's history library, and maximizing their educational and recreational value to visitors or on-line users. In addition, it manages the process for applications within the state for additions to the National Register of Historic Places.

Amy Martin is the current Director of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.

History of agency[edit]

The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency (IHPA) was created by State law in July 1985. The agency's oldest bureau, the Illinois State Historical Library, was created in 1889, but the origins of the agency could be said to date back to the creation of Lincoln's Tomb for the burial of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln in Springfield, Illinois, in 1865.

During the 20th century, the state of Illinois acquired and restored a wide variety of historic properties throughout the state. One key asset, Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site in Menard County, a reconstruction of a village where Abraham Lincoln lived in the 1830s, was established in the 1930s. The agency also administers the Cahokia World Heritage Site which includes the largest pre-columbian construction in the Americas north of Mexico.

The IHPA continued to grow after its creation in 1985, largely because of continued public interest in Lincoln as the bicentennial of his birth approached in 2009. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, also in Springfield, Illinois, was dedicated in 2005. Unlike most presidential libraries, the Lincoln Library is state-owned.

The proposed 2016 budget of Governor Bruce Rauner would eliminate the agency, assigning its duties to the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Opponents of the move claim that the Commerce Department has neither the expertise nor the interest to carry out the agency's functions and that any savings from the agency's 2015 budget of $15 million would be minimal.[1]

List of Illinois State Historic Sites[edit]

The following is an alphabetical listing of the more than 50 Illinois State Historic Sites that are under the jurisdiction of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency:[2]

In addition to those above administered by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, other historic sites operated by Illinois state agencies include:


  1. ^ "Illinois Historic Preservation Agency fights for survival". Chicago Tribune. April 16, 2015. Retrieved May 8, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Illinois Historic sites". Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. Retrieved 2013-02-21. 

External links[edit]