Springfield Illinois is known as the Land of Lincoln for good reason. It was here in the capitol city that Lincoln married, raised his family and practiced law before heading off to Washington DC after winning the presidency. The Lincoln-Herndon Law office is located in the heart of downtown at 6th & Adams Street on the south side of the square facing the Old State Capitol.
On the Illinois Historic Preservation website they state that, “The Lincoln-Herndon Law Offices are within the only remaining building in which Abraham Lincoln maintained a law office. The site consists of the surviving portion of a three-story brick commercial block constructed in 1840-41.”
The office was built by Seth M. Tinsley in the Greek Revival architectural style. The building although when Lincoln was there was a law office, also served other purposes. During Lincoln's time the federal government rented the first floor for a post office and the second floor for a district courtroom, judge's chamber and clerk's office. Abraham Lincoln and his second law partner Stephen T. Logan rented offices on the third floor, which at that time was located above the federal courtroom.
The partnership with Lincoln and Logan ended in 1844 and then Lincoln took William H. Herndon as his junior partner. Abraham Lincoln worked from this building as an attorney from 1843 until around 1852. While serving as a US Congressman, his partner William H. Herndon (1818-1891) maintained the practice.
The building is rather plain and cramped, but the stories during the tour make it easy to see the Abraham Lincoln painted over the years as the doting father, the down home honest man that later became the nation’s 16th president. Visit and see where Lincoln lived and worked.
The Lincoln-Herndon Law Office building has been listed as part of the National Register of Historic Places since 1978 and is one of over 50 sites operated by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency (IHPA).
The Lincoln-Herndon Law Offices State Historic Site is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. from May through Labor Day. After Labor Day to May it is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The last tour begins 45 minutes before closing. The site is closed major holidays and is handicapped accessible. Donation suggested. The site phone number is 217/785-7289. Groups of 20 or more should make reservations. Call the Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau at 1-800-545-7300 or 217/789-2360.