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Come visit Hardin County!
Hardin Co. ILGenWeb Coordinator
C ome on down, or up as the case may be.

Genealogy is interesting, but you need to see the old homeplace or cemetery with your own eyes. Hardin County may be one of the smallest counties in the state, in terms of both population and physical size, but it has to be one of the most scenic and historic.

The Shawnee National Forest covers much of the county with approximately 20 percent of the land owned by the U.S. Forest Service. The State of Illinois owns smaller sites at Cave-in-Rock State Park and the Rose Hotel State Historic Site.

If your ancestors came to Hardin County from just about anywhere, they probably crossed the Ohio River at one of the many ferry locations. The best way to get an idea of what that was like is to take a trip on the Shawnee Queen, the local river taxi started by Rides Mass Transit District last August. In 2002, the plans are to offer two-hour tours starting in Rosiclare. The first will go downriver from Rosiclare to Golconda and back. The second will go upriver from Rosiclare to Cave-in-Rock and back. Of course, spend some extra time and take the car ferry across the river at Cave-in-Rock as well.

As far as lodging goes, Hardin County doesn't have any chain motel, but it does have a number of smaller lodges and rooms available, many with views of the Ohio River. Here is a short list that I know is not complete as there are some new sites just developing.

Read Chameleon Illinois for a description of the Illinois on the Ohio National Scenic Byway which runs through Hardin County.

Lodgingthe list starts at Cave-in-Rock and goes downriver.
Cave-in-Rock State Park Lodge (618) 289-4545
Cave-in-Rock Motel (618) 289-3296
Tower Rock Rd — between Cave-in-Rock and E'town
Pirates Cove B&B
Arrowhead Lodge (6 mi. N. of E'town) (618) 287-8574
River Rose Inn (618) 287-8811
Rose Hotel State Historic Site
Grand Rose Hotel B&B
(618) 287-2872
Cissy's (sleeping rooms) (618) 285-3665
Shetlerville — Pope-Hardin County Line
San Damiano Shrine (618) 285-3507
Hardin County also has some wonderful hiking trails including the eastern leg of the River to River Trail that stretches from Grand Tower on the Mississippi to Battery Rock on the Ohio River

©2000-2004 Jon Musgrave
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