- Illinois State Museum Second Floor Gallery
This major exhibition, in celebration of the State’s 200th birthday, features rare and rarely-seen artifacts from the Museum’s 13.5–million-object Illinois Legacy Collection to highlight the dynamic story of Illinois.
Bicentennial and Beyond! exhibits artifacts from a variety of disciplines, including art, anthropology, archeology, botany, decorative arts, geology, and zoology, chosen for the unique stories they tell about Illinois. Reflecting the fact that the complete story of Illinois goes well beyond the 200 years since statehood, artifacts will range from 400-million-year-old fossils to contemporary art. Visitors will see a helmet worn by a World War I soldier; a trunk brought by German immigrants in 1852; a core segment from Route 66; a piece of contemporary art created of cowhide; an Olney albino gray tree squirrel mount; and a portrait miniature done by an itinerant Illinois artist, among many other treasures. Visitors will explore, discover, learn, and share the history, prehistory, and natural history of Illinois through the featured objects and the fascinating stories behind them.