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U.S. Grant Birthday Weekend

April 12, 2019 - April 14, 2019

Each year the museum celebrates the birthday of Galena’s favorite citizen, Civil War hero and our 18th president, Ulysses S. Grant. Did you know that U.S. Grant lived in Galena prior to the Civil War and ran for president while living in Galena? Learn more about his life here during our annual Grant birthday celebration, which includes a state dinner on Saturday, April 13.  See more details about Dinner with the Grants and the schedule for Friday, April 12 through Sunday, April 14 below, and check back at galenahistory.org for updates.


Dinner with the Grants

Saturday evening, April 13, the Historical Society presents President Grant’s State Dinner at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa ballroom. President and Mrs. Grant invite friends to join them for this grand occasion. The event includes a five-course meal inspired by dishes the Grants served at the White House. Semi-formal or period attire are appropriate.


Tickets are available for $75 at the history museum website, www.galenahistory.org. A limited number of seats are available at the President’s Table for $95 by calling the Historical Society at 815-777-9129. RSVP by April 9.


“We are excited to have the Americana Band join us, adding live music and dancing to the Grant Birthday activities, creating an immersive experience throughout the weekend,” says Historical Society Executive Director Nancy Breed. “President Grant’s State Dinner is a unique opportunity to dive into the history, stories, even the food of Grant’s time.”


Complete Event Schedule

The schedule for President Grant’s 197th Birthday Celebration offers numerous opportunities to join in on fun. Unless specified, the activities are free of charge.


Friday, April 12

5 p.m.to 6 p.m. – The popular Grant Home Lamplight Tour, at the Grant Home State Historic Site, 500 Bouthillier St., gives participants the opportunity to see Grant’s home as he and his family saw it – by the soft light of gas lamps.


Saturday, April 13

9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. –  Galena & U.S. Grant Museum, 211 S. Bench St., free admission and refreshments.

10 a.m.& noon – Main Street Walking Tour with General Grant; meet in DeSoto House Hotel lobby, 230 S.  Main St.; $15 per person.

11 a.m. – Home Front Pie Auction at Gateway to History; dozens of locally donated pies will be up for auction.

Noon – The trial of the “Nefarious Plot to Capture General U.S. Grant ,” and more events to come at the History Museum.

6 p.m. – Social Hour for President Grant’s State Dinner, Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa; 7 p.m. dinner.; 8:30 p.m. concert and dancing.


Sunday, April 14

9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. – Birthday cake and refreshments at the History Museum.

10 a.m.& Noon – Main Street Walking Tour with General Grant; meet in Desoto House Hotel lobby, 230 S. Main St.; $15 per person.

10:30 a.m. – Historic Methodist Service, with circuit-rider preacher, at the Galena Untied Methodist Church, 125 S. Bench St., where the Grant family worshipped. Potluck to follow service.


“As the weekend approaches, connect with us on our website, www.galenahistory.org, and follow how Grant Birthday Weekend develops on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram,” Breed said. “This is an exciting time of year as we kick off Galena’s busy season, and look forward to welcoming visitors from near and far. This is a time to see Galena shine, and Grant Birthday Weekend is a major part of that.”


April 12, 2019
April 14, 2019


Galena History Museum
211 S. Bench Street
Galena, IL 61036 United States
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