Bryant Cottage State Historic Site

Bryant Cottage State Historic Site Hours

March - October
9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Thursday - Sunday

November - February
9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Thursday - Sunday

Hours Subject to Change

146 East Wilson
Bement, Illinois 61813

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The Bryant Cottage State Historic Site in Bement is part of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and is known as the location that Stephen Douglas and Abraham Lincoln met to discuss the famous 1858 Lincoln-Douglas Debates. Visitors can get a glimpse of what life was like when Abraham Lincoln visited the cottage.

The home was built by Francis E. Bryant, a Bement entrepreneur and friend of Stephen Douglas, in 1856. Marilyn Ayers,Manager of the Historic Site, has been giving tours, hosting events and educating visitors since July 1985.

In 2008, the site was privileged to acquire three Looking for Lincoln wayside exhibits. This is the only location in the state to have three exhibits in one location. For more information regarding Looking for Lincoln, go to their website at

Also in 2008, the Bryant Cottage State Historic Site was honored to be the site of the opening ceremony to celebrate the 150 Year Anniversary of the Douglas-Lincoln Debates.

The Bryant Cottage State Historic Site is open Thursday through Sunday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. from March through October and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. from November through February although days and times are subject to change. Annual events include a ham and bean lunch on Bement's homecoming, Old Glory Festival second Saturday of every June, Heritage Sunday and Ice Cream Social every July, a holiday open house in December, and they have also hosted a military timeline and other Lincoln related events. For more information visit the cottage at 146 East Wilson in Bement, Email Benjamin at or call 217-678-8184. Programs for all ages are encouraged.







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