Attractions History & Heritage

John Deere Historic Site

Grand Detour, IL - Ogle County
Home / What to Do / Attractions / History & Heritage / John Deere Historic Site

Hours:

  • Monday: CLOSED
  • Tuesday: 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday: 9 am - 5 pm
  • Thursday: 9 am - 5 pm
  • Friday: 9 am - 5 pm
  • Saturday: 9 am - 5 pm
  • Sunday: 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Amenities:

  • Family Friendly
  • Free
  • Self Guided Tour
  • Gift Shop
  • Open to the public
  • Bus/RV/Trailer parking

Details

Open April 1 to October 31

The company John Deere founded has a presence around the world, but it all started right here in Grand Detour, Illinois. When you step foot on these grounds, it will feel like stepping back in time. Hear the floorboards creak as you walk inside John Deere’s home. Take in the beauty of the picturesque landscape. And feel the heat of fired steel inside a working blacksmith shop. Whether you’re a school group, a John Deere fan, or a history buff, it’s an experience you can’t miss. 

Archeological Site

When the man became a legend in 1963, an archeological team uncovered the exact location where John Deere forged his first self-scouring steel plow and how it helped open the emerging American West to settlement. While looking over the preserved site and seeing firsthand the artifacts excavated, listen in as John Deere describes how he built a thriving manufacturing business.

John Deere’s Home

Built in 1836, the original John Deere home gives you an intimate glimpse of pioneer life. You’ll see how the Deere family raised eight children, not to mention live-in apprentices, in their six-room home. See the rooms as the Deere family would have known them, furnished with period household items that show how pioneers cooked, cleaned, bathed, and spent their few leisure hours.

Demonstrations

Watch live blacksmith demonstrations in a replica of John Deere’s original shop. Learn how he created the first commercially successful steel plow and changed the world of agriculture forever.

Tours

Tour the original John Deere family home and get an intimate glimpse of pioneer life in 1836. Explore rooms as the Deere family would have known them, furnished with household items that show how pioneers cooked, cleaned, bathed, and spent their leisure hours.

Artifacts

Stand in the exact location where John Deere forged the first self-scouring steel plow. Explore the site, view excavated artifacts, and listen as Deere himself describes how he built a thriving manufacturing business.

Gift Shop

Right next door is the gift shop, where you can find items forged in our blacksmith shop as mementos of your visit. If you’re looking for something specific, custom ironwork can be done on request. There’s also a selection of clothing, hats, and other John Deere Historic Site merchandise. Shop a while. After you’re done shopping, relax on our covered porch and take in the beauty that is Grand Detour.

Admission is FREE

Get ready for a night of nostalgia! #JeffLudin brings his acoustic magic to the Savanna Museum & Cultural Center on Feb 23 at 7:30 pm. Don't miss this chance to hear your favorite tunes from yesteryear & today! 
Go to our Events calendar in bio.
Hugs to all our friends and visitors. Let's make it last the whole year!❤🥰
#VisitNWillinois #middleofeverything #enjoyillinois #valentineslove
#nailjunkie #nails4today #nwillinoisirl
#ChocolateRendevous--2/17/24. Bring your sweetheart or bestie out for a night of gourmet appetizers, over 100 different desserts, premium bourbon tastings, and entertainment. ALL of which are included in the price of your ticket. Your ticket includes 3 #free top-shelf drinks, a parking shuttle, and FIREWORKS!
Shopping in NW Illinois is next level! 💼🛍️ Don't miss out on the best deals and steals in four amazing counties. https://swiy.co/nwilretail #ShoppingNirvana #VisitNWIllinois #BargainHunters #middleofeverything
Shopping in NW Illinois is next level! 💼🛍️ Don't miss out on the best deals and steals in four amazing counties. https://swiy.co/nwilretail  #ShoppingNirvana #VisitNWIllinois #BargainHunters #middleofeverything

TRAVEL GUIDE

Request a free copy or view our latest guide online.

PLAN YOUR TRIP

Ideas and resources to help plan your next real getaway in NW Illinois.