Explore Our History

Explore Our History

Are you fascinated by history?

Is your ideal day spent casually strolling through a museum or re-reading your favorite book about Abraham Lincoln? If so, you’re in the right place! Madison is sure to make any history buff’s wildest dreams come true!

With more than 133 blocks of outstanding architecture, Madison’s downtown business district is the largest Contiguous National Historic Landmark Districts in the country!  Madison’s founders brought with them their own history, which is displayed in the architecture of the homes and buildings that make up this historic gem. Travel America says, “Madison is an outdoor museum of architecture.”

There are 8 house museums that are open to the public during the season and several more open by advance appointment.  They range from the office of a horse and buggy doctor (kids love the skeleton), to a 19th century saddletree factory, to grand homes.

The crown jewel of Madison historic sites is Lanier Mansion State Historic Site – open all year with guided tours Wednesdays through Sundays. You can purchase your tickets at the Visitor Center! Beautiful formal gardens surround the mansion.

Walking Tours

Madison’s downtown walkability offers you time to explore Madison on foot. From Central, Eastside and Westside to all of Madison’s Treasures, find self-guided walking tour brochures at the Visitors Center – 601 W. First Street.

Prefer an app-based walking tour? All are now available on PocketSights, the free GPS Tour App.

These self-guided walking tours include:

  • Madison in the Movies
  • Public Art & Murals
  • Madison Trails
  • Fire Departments
  • Eastside Industry
  • Central Business District
  • Westside Architectural
  • Westside Industry
  • Historic Churches


Watch the History itinerary >

Featured on Great Day Live Hometown Proud Madison Segment

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