A museum owner works to get a building associated with Abraham Lincoln the respect it deserves.


ATHENS - People pass by the two-story, wood-frame building at 200 S. Main St. in Athens every day without knowing that the structure has major connections to Abraham Lincoln.
 
And that’s the frustration: They don’t know, and they do pass by.
 
Especially on the outside, the building that houses the Abraham Lincoln Long Nine Museum hasn’t changed much in the last 175-plus years. It’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is a stop on the Looking for Lincoln Story Trail and has a prime location between two hubs for Lincoln tourism - Springfield and Petersburg.
 
But the Long Nine Museum often goes unnoticed by sightseers and central Illinoisans both.
 
"The Col. Matthew Rogers building has been overlooked as one of the greatest original Lincoln sites," said owner John Eden, a Lake Petersburg resident who retired in 1991 from the Illinois Department of Transportation.