Keeney's: An exhibit on the longtime sporting goods store in downtown Elgin and the Keeney Family!
Timed to the Stars: 100 Years of the Elgin Observatory
Permanent Exhibits The Museum has five permanent exhibits that tell the rich history of our community. Visitors learn about the City's beginnings, architecture, road race, Hiawatha Pageant and the Elgin National Watch Factory and industry. Temporary exhibits highlighting local history are regularly featured.
Elgin: From River to Rails presents the founding of Elgin and the earliest settlers, including the Gifford family, builders of the first cabin in Elgin and considered the city's founders. We also have a recreation of their cabin on the Museum grounds.
Explore Elgin Architectureillustrates the many building and design styles still evident throughout Elgin, and identifies prominent Elgin architects.
Elgin Road Raceshighlights the brief but colorful history of the Elgin Road Race, held here beginning 100 years ago.
In the permanent exhibit rooms, children can get behind the wheel of a reproduction road race car or have their picture taken with Ralph Mulford, winner of the first road race held in 1910. The Watch Factory room features a wall mural of the clock face that once graced the watch factory tower and the 13th watch produced on the famed assembly line.
Visitors are invited to view a 6-minute introductory video. The nationally distributed documentary, Circle of Time, the story of the Elgin Watch Factory, produced by the Society and Grindstone Productions in 2002, is also available in the Museum Store.
A brief tour of our Elgin National Watch Company exhibit
See the historical cooking presentation from our 2011 grand opening
Here's an interview with someone who survived the 1920 tornado that struck Elgin
360 Park Street, Elgin, Illinois 60120 847.742.4248