The Waukegan Historical Society, a not-for-profit volunteer organization, was formed in 1968 by a group of residents to preserve and promote the long and varied history of Waukegan. If you have an interest in local history or that of your family, consider becoming a member. We would welcome your participation with us.

The Society and the Waukegan Park District jointly operate the Waukegan History Museum located amidst the gently rolling landscape of Bowen Park in northeastern Waukegan. The Museum resides in two historic structures on Bowen Heritage Circle, the Haines House (home of the Waukegan History Museum) and Lilac Cottage (home of the Raymond Library).

One of the earliest surviving structures in Lake County, the Haines House has been restored to reflect the décor of the late 1800’s when it was the home of John C. Haines, an early mayor of Chicago. It also houses important Waukegan artifacts, and both permanent and short term exhibits. 

The Waukegan History Museum is open Tuesday and Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Saturday from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Group tours may be scheduled by appointment.

The Raymond Library houses the Society’s extensive research collection of photos and documents on all aspects of Waukegan’s history. It is open Wednesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Shop the Holiday Catalog

Our catalog includes books, photographs of historic Waukegan and other holiday gifts. Great for history buffs and those that just want to reminisce.

Download the catalog and order form.

Holiday Greetings

As the year ends, we think about the things we are grateful for. We think of you and your support of our programs and events throughout the year. Thank you for your commitment to preserving and presenting the history of Waukegan for the enjoyment and education of our community and beyond.

We wish you and yours a very happy and healthy holiday season and all the best for a wonderful 2014.

Happy holidays!




Current Exhibits

Back to School (opens October 12) 

The Kennedy Assassination in Print (opens November 2)