Designated a National Monument by President Clinton in 2000 and restored by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Lincoln's Cottage
served as President Lincoln's family residence for a quarter of his presidency and is the most significant historic site directly associated with Lincoln's presidency aside from the White House
. In addition to the cottage - which is really a 34-room Gothic Revival style house - the adjacent Robert H. Smith Visitor Education Center offers related exhibits and interactive media presentations. Some special artifacts include a signed copy of the Emancipation Proclamation, the pen Lincoln used to sign it, the inkwell he used to draft it, and a signed copy of the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery.
Guided tours (with a limit of 15 people) of President Lincoln's Cottage and a portion of the Soldiers' Home grounds are offered hourly. Advance ticket purchase is recommended. Several more in-depth programs are available for school groups, including one where students write down their ideas and then store them in their top hats, as Lincoln was known to do.