Lewistown Society for Historical Preservation

The Lewistown Society for Historic Preservation is a non-for-profit 501(c)3 organization that maintains the Rasmussen Blacksmith Shop Museum, Rasmussen Museum, and the Fulton County Narrow Gauge Depot. The mission of the Lewistown Society for Historic Preservation is to discover, preserve, and share the history of Lewistown and the surrounding areas. All Museum hours are by appointment by calling 547-4301. Admission is FREE, but donations are accepted. Donations may be sent to P.O. Box 53, Lewistown, IL 61542.

For more information regarding the Museums or the Lewistown Society for Historical Preservation membership and meetings, please call 309-547-4301 or email: explore.lewistown.history@gmail.com.

PDF (Click image to download a museums brochure for more information).


The Museum has been closed to the public for the last 18 months as the Museum underwent a major renovation to save it for future generations. During those 18 months the building saw extensive brick repair and replacement. A large portion of the shop floor was renovated. Several windows have been replaced with quality reproductions using period glass and construction techniques. On Saturday, August 12, 2017 at 10:00 am the Museum will open its doors to once again allow the public to visit this historic business. We will have a blacksmith in the museum demonstrating the work that was so important to the early development of the United States. The adjacent museum building housing artifacts from Lewistown and Fulton County’s historic past will also be open. We will have food and drinks available from 11:00am to 1:30pm. A bake sale will also be held to raise funds to support the Museum.

The Rasmussen Blacksmith Shop Museum located on Main Street in Lewistown is one of a few historic blacksmith shops in the entire country in its original location.

The blacksmith shop was built in the mid-1830s and Nels Rasmussen purchased the shop in 1880. The sound of the blacksmith’s hammer could be heard until 1969, when the shop closed after the death of Don Rasmussen, Nels’ son. It was, at that time, one of the oldest operating proprietorship in Lewistown still in the same family.

The shop was acquired shortly after its closing by the Lewistown Society for Historic Preservation. Since that time, visitors have been able to experience the building’s long history and operation, including seeing blacksmiths in action. The Rasmussen Blacksmith Shop Museum is a popular stop during the annual Spoon River Scenic Drive Fall Festival.

This historic building has underwent extensive renovation in 2016 and 2017 and is once again available to the public. However, we still need to replace doors, a number of windows, and restore a number of exhibits in the Museum. Please send your tax deductible contribution to the Lewistown Society for Historic Preservation at P.O. Box 53, Lewistown, Illinois 61542.

Rasmussen Blacksmith Shop Videos

Rasmussen Blacksmith Shop