One of the unintended consequences of the partial shutdown of the federal government is a surge in attendance at the Illinois State Military Museum. Local tourism officials are directing groups there these days, and the museum has the shutdown – and subsequent closure of the Lincoln Home National Historic Site – to thank. “I’d be hesitant to use the word thank,” corrects the museum’s director, Stewart Reeve, a retired brigadier general.
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“Since Oct. 4, we’ve had eight additional tour buses, totaling about 320 students that have visited our place, all for the first time.” Reeve says the newcomers will tell friends and also make the museum a future stop. Reeve says the museum, adjacent to Camp Lincoln in Springfield, tells the story of the Illinois National Guard. It recently hosted a “Rosie the Riveter” exhibit and is now promoting a World War I encampment in November. You can contact the museum at (217) 761-3910.