United States



Joliet Area Historical Museum

Your visit to the Joliet Area Historical Museum is a journey through time. Here you will experience how people lived, worked, traveled and built the foundation for today’s thriving community.

Walk through a life-size replica depicting the building of the historic Illinois Michigan Canal.

Stroll down a turn-of-the-century street past store fronts showcasing fashions of yesteryear.

Browse through a hardware store.

Take a virtual ride on a replica trolley.

Along the way, meet life-size models, interact with touch-screen visuals, view award-winning audio-visuals and learn how the past shaped the world you now enjoy.

Permanent Collection

Song of the Patriot – American Sheet Music Covers of World War I
April 6 through July 8, 2007
Relive America’s wartime homefront through lyrics and cover illustrations of popular World War I songs and sheet music. The exhibit also explores the booming sheet music industry, early chromolithography, and the significance of piano playing as home entertainment. This exhibit includes local WWI memorabilia, including photos, letters, and uniforms of Joliet’s veterans. Located in the Special Exhibit Gallery

Forthcoming exhibitions


Illinois Lincoln Highway Coalition Traveling Exhibit
July 8 through August 26, 2007
This beautiful eight-panel interactive exhibit, on loan from the Illinois Lincoln Highway Coalition, tells the story of the Lincoln Highway while depicting interesting facts and folklore about the road as its popularity grew across the nation.

Asian Games: The Art of the Contest
September 1 through October 5, 2007
"Asian Games: The Art of Contest" explores the role of games as social and cultural activities in the diverse societies of pre-modern Asia. Games from ancient China and ancient India set the rules for games played today, including Backgammon and Monopoly, as well as sports including polo and field hockey. Using a collection of art reproductions, text panels and actual historic games, the exhibit portrays the social functions of various board, card and ball games in Asia, and charts their spread to other regions and cultures. The exhibit also explores issues such as the changing role of games as they were adopted into new cultural contexts; how power, class and gender were reflected in them; intellectual, moral and spiritual associations; and games as competitions and analogues of warfare.


$5 Adults
$4 Seniors (60+)
$4 Full-time students with valid school ID
$3 Youth (age 4-17)
FREE-Members and children under 3

Opening hours

Closed Mondays (except school holidays)
10 am - 5 pm
Sunday, Noon - 5 pm
Closed: New Years Day, Easter Sunday
Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day

Getting there

The Joliet Area Historical Museum is located at 204 N. Ottawa Street in downtown Joliet. Free parking is available in the Museum parking lot located 1 block north of the Museum at the corner of Ottawa and Webster Streets. The Museum is also accessible via the PACE bus system

Museum internal and external photos (1)

Click on the images to enlarge


Call or e-mail the Education Department
Educator Kim Shehorn-Martin
(815) 723-5201, ext. 235

Please have the following information ready:

* School/organization name, address, and phone number
* Contact person’s name and name of other teachers
* Program that you would like to schedule
* Date and time requested for program
* Age/grade of students, number of children, if you have special needs patrons that will need accommodations, and if any of the classes are special education classes
* If you will be having lunch on-site
* Whether or not you would like to schedule a gift shop visit

A confirmation notice will be sent in the mail. Please read it carefully and call us immediately if there are errors. If there are no errors, please mail your 25% deposit to the following address:

Joliet Area Historical Museum
Education Department
204 N. Ottawa St.
Joliet , IL 60432

We look forward to working with you and your students!!!