Historical Markers in
Adams County, Illinois

A National Cemetery System A Quincy "Copperhead" A Victorian Cemetery Archaic Augustine Tolton Changing Slavery Charles Henry Bull House Charley's Run Crockets from Portico Douglas' Disciple Downtown Quincy in 1858 Dr. Thomas Edgar Musselman Dred Scott Decision Ernest M. Wood Office and Studio His Friends Rest Here Historical Society of Quincy and Adams County Honoring Soldiers In Honor of Those Who Gave the Ultimate Sacrifice In Memory of the Potawatomi Indian "Trail of Death" Indian Mounds Park Indian Removals - A Memorial John Wood 1798-1880 John Wood Mansion Limestone Capitals Lincoln Correspondent Lincoln Promoter Lincoln Recuperates Lincoln-Douglas Debate Lincoln's 1854 Visit Lincoln's Confidante Lincoln's Friend Johnston Lincoln's Honored Friend Lincoln's Quincy Lorado Taft (1860 - 1936) Madison Park Marquette & Jolliet Mississippian Morality of Slavery Navy Reserve Niemann Building Original Site of Quincy College Original Site of St. Peter Church Paleoindian Permanency of Slavery Political Allies Political Campaigning in 1858 Potawatomi Trail of Death Quincy Quincy National Cemetery Quincy Senior High School Quincy's Early Environment Quincy's German Heritage Quincy's Judge Douglas R. F. Newcomb House Racial Equality Ruff Brewing Company Search for Equality Spire Section Spread of Slavery Into The Territories St. Boniface Catholic Church St. John's Episcopal Church Steamboats and Railroads Stephen A. Douglas in Quincy Stone Smokehouse The Browning House The History of South Park The J. H. Brockschmidt Building The Latter-Day Saints in Quincy The Lord's Barn The Lord's Cabin The Monument The Mormons in Quincy Thomas Scott Baldwin 1858-1923 Trail of Death Tri-State Business Center Ulysses S. Grant Warm, Sincere Friendship Washington Theater Welcome to Illinois William L. King Building Woodland World Trade Center Artifact
The word "Illinois" comes from a Native American word meaning "tribe of superior men." The Illinois were a confederation of several Native American tribes that lived in the region.
Adams County, Illinois has a rich and storied history dating back to its origins in the early 19th century. The county was established on January 13, 1825, and named after the sixth President of the United States, John Quincy Adams. The area was initially inhabited by indigenous Native American tribes, including the Illini and Mesquaki tribes, before European settlers arrived.

In the early years of settlement, Adams County played a significant role in the development of Illinois as a state. The first permanent European settlers in the region were French traders, who established trading posts along the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. As American settlers began to arrive, the county quickly grew in population and economic activity.

The city of Quincy, which is the county seat of Adams County, became a major hub for steamboat traffic on the Mississippi River during the mid-19th century. The river served as a vital transportation route, connecting the area to larger markets in St. Louis and New Orleans. This led to the rise of industries such as lumber, brick making, and manufacturing in the county.

During the Civil War, Adams County played a critical role in supporting the Union cause. Quincy became a strategic location for military recruitment and supply, and many residents joined the Union Army. The county also served as one of the many stops on the Underground Railroad, providing a safe haven for escaped slaves seeking freedom.

In more recent years, Adams County has continued to thrive as a center for agriculture, manufacturing, and healthcare. The county is known for its fertile farmland, producing a variety of crops including corn, soybeans, and wheat. Quincy has also become a regional hub for healthcare, with numerous hospitals and medical facilities serving the area.

Today, Adams County remains a vibrant and diverse community, with a rich history that is celebrated and preserved through its numerous historical sites and museums. The county's strategic location on the Mississippi River, its contributions to the Union cause during the Civil War, and its agricultural and industrial sectors continue to shape its present-day identity.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Adams County, Illinois.

  • 1825: Adams County, IL is established
  • 1839: Quincy becomes the county seat
  • 1841: The Mormon Temple is built in Nauvoo
  • 1861-1865: Adams County residents serve in the American Civil War
  • 1871: Quincy suffers a destructive fire
  • 1898: The Adams County Courthouse is completed
  • 1920: The Lock and Dam No. 21 is constructed along the Mississippi River
  • 1940: The Great River Road is established in Adams County
  • 1954: Interstate 172 is completed, connecting Quincy to the Interstate Highway System
  • 1979: The Quincy Notre Dame High School is founded
  • 1993: The Great River Bridge is opened between Quincy and West Quincy