Cairo Custom House Museum – Cairo, Illinois

Cairo Custom House Museum – Cairo, Illinois
Built in 1897 on the site chosen by Stephen A. Douglas the United States Custom House (now the Cairo Custom House Museum) has served the community in a number of different capacities. It has been the U.S. Post Office, Customs, the Weather Bureau, The Federal Court Room and the Cairo Police Department.

On the first floor of the building there are Civil War and local historical items. The Halliday Art Gallery and individual display rooms are located on the second floor.

On display is a desk used by General U.S. Grant, an 1865 Cairo fire wagon, a scale model of the gunboat U.S.S. Cairo, a historic hamburger/popcorn wagon and more. On the first floor you will see the U.S. Post Office which was third in importance in the nation at the time it was built because of the mail connections to and from the emerging West. Imagine how important those letters were to the families and friends separated by so many miles and in totally different living conditions.

The fireplaces in the building were built for ventilation rather than heat (although heat was welcome in the winter too). The interior wood is black and white walnut. Floors and hallways are white marble and black slate. The uprights in stairway banisters are made of iron with black walnut railings.

Location: 1400 Washington, Cairo, Illinois 62914

Phone: 618-734-9632

Hours: Hours:
Tuesday – Friday: 10 am – 12 pm and 1 pm – 3 pm
There is no charge to visit the Cairo Customs House.
  Other tours can be set by making an appointment. Call Louise Ogg at 618-776-5407 or Monica Smith at the Cairo Public Library 618-734-1840.