Who We AreThe Office of Tourism, City of Pontiac, Illinois, USA
How To Reach UsPhysical Address: 115 West Howard St. Pontiac, IL, USA, 61764
Phone: (815) 844-5847
Fax Machine: (815) 842-3885
LocationPontiac, Illinois is 644 feet above sea level, and located in the central plains of the United States. It is 100 miles southwest of Chicago along Interstate 55.
WeatherPontiac, Illinois Weather Averages
City PopulationThe 2010 US Census lists a city population of 11,931.
- By road - 100 miles southwest of Chicago on Interstate 55 or Historic Route 66
- By rail - Amtrak passenger service
- By air - Private planes at Pontiac Municipal Airport. The nearest commercial service at Central Illinois Regional Airport (CIRA) in Bloomington IL (35 miles south of Pontiac).
HistoryPontiac is named after Chief Pontiac, an Ottawa chief and the leader of "Pontiac's Rebellion" in the 1760s. Founded in 1837, Pontiac is the county seat for Livingston County. While agriculture has always been the basis for the local economy, Pontiac has some light industry, a growing tourism sector, as well as a thriving retail community. With both rail and highway connections, Pontiac as been the commercial focus of the region for many years. Pontiac experienced significant growth spurts with the coming of two important transportation infrastructures: The Chicago and Alton Railroad in 1854, and Route 66 in 1926. The City is currently a popular stop for national and international Route 66 heritage travelers.
Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum - Owned by the Route 66 Association of Illinois, the museum features artifacts, photographs, and videos that help to tell the story of America' Main Street and its impact on the nation.
Pontiac-Oakland Automobile Museum and Resource Center - The world's finest collection of Oakland and Pontiac cars. Classics, original barn finds, and rare prototypes make up the assortment of vehicles on display. Includes a library with books, magazines, owner's manuals, service manuals, and other historic paper artifacts.
Museum of the Gilding Arts - Dedicated to the art and craft of using gold, silver and other metal leaf in art, decor, and architecture. Created by the Society of Gilders, the museum puts the history and the modern day use of precious metals on display. Tools, samples, and a re-created gold leaf factory are some of the featured presentations at the museum.
Livingston County War Museum - Staffed by veterans and honoring the men and women from the area who served in the nation's armed forces. Artifacts, uniforms, and stories all provide context to appreciate our local heroes.
Abraham Lincoln Story Trail - a walking tour visiting the sites in Pontiac associated with the city's many connections to the humble prairie lawyer who became one of the world's most admired statesmen.
Murals on Main Street - a collection of more than 20 colorful, outdoor, painted murals that help to tell the stories associated with the city's political, commercial, and social history.
The Bob Waldmire Experience - Waldmire was one of the most unique characters devoted to the preservation, appreciation, and promotion of Route 66. As an itinerant artist, Bob spent most of his adult life traveling up and down the Mother Road, making and selling his art, and serving as an advocate for the highway. His Road Yacht home, his 1972 VW van, and many of his artworks are on display at the Pontiac Museum Complex.
Activities in Pontiac
- Disc Golf
- Historic Walking Tours
- Nature Walks
- Skateboard Park