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Cairo Illinois: Magnolia Manor

Updated on May 16, 2013

Magnolia Manor: Historical Mansion and Museum

Magnolia Manor is located in the historic park district in Cairo, Illinois. It lays between Twenty-seventh and Twenty-eighth streets on a street called Washington Avenue. This mansion was built in 1869 and is one of the historical landmarks inside of Cairo. Among this mansion are many other beautiful homes, some kept kept nice and some falling apart. Magnolia Manor is one of the ones that has been kept up and is open for tours. It is a must see for any history or architecture buff.

I took the main pictures of Magnolia Manor for this page on Feb. 28, 2009. It was dreary out and after the ice storm, the trees look sad. I will go back in the spring/summer and take some photos where I can actually get OUT of the car!

Learn EVERYTHING about the manor! - Get this local book

Galigher's Victorian Magnolia Manor
Galigher's Victorian Magnolia Manor

This book is an excellent resource for anyone wanting to learn more about this house. It is written locally. I have looked at the book it covers everything including:

- History

- Architectural features

- Antiques and collectibles

- Touring the rooms and what the rooms have in them



In 1869, Manolia Manor began its establishment by Charles A. Galigher. He was a rich man and wanted to build a big and strong home.

In 1872, it was finished. The Magnolia Manor was then a home to Charles Galigher, his wife Adelia Lippit Galigher, and their sons, Frank, Albert, and Charles Frederick. Magnolia Manor is a 17 room brick house. The walls of the house were built with double brick and a 10 inch air space to keep the dampness out from the usually humid southern Illinois summer.

Charles Galigher became friends with General Ulysses S. Grant, who stayed in the Magnolia Manor and had a big celebration for his presidential retirement. Cairo, IL was his headquarters during his siege of the south.


I don't have a list of all of the rooms but here is a list of some of the things inside of the house.

- A large hall was the gathering place for large crowds, entertained in the ballroom.

- Drawing room

- Stage

- Multiple dining rooms

- Sitting room, or Library

- Bedrooms

- Billiard Rooms

- Storerooms

- Sewing room

- Many more rooms. Visit Cairo, IL and take a tour!


Because of Ulyssess S. Grant's visit to the Magnolia Manor, and the beautiful antique home, Magnolia Manor has been nicely kept in its original form and is open for tours and visits. Much of the original furtiture is there, and it is one of the highlights of visiting Cairo, IL. The manor is decorated for the holidays and is really pretty when in the winter when it snows.

The room which now houses the museum was the sitting room, or library.

Magnolia Manor was added to the National Register of Historic Places on Dec. 17, 1969.

Magnolia Manor is open to the public daily.

Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Sunday 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The Museum is closed from

Christmas Eve to New Year's Day.

Take a visit someday! They love visitors because the people who keep this going are volunteers and want to help Cairo get back on its feet.

I have taken a video of the Manor and will have it up soon!!

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Have you been to Magnolia Manor?

Would you ever like to go?

What do you think of the old mansion?

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      We visited Magnolia in the 1980s, when we had family in the area, my father in law was a local native and my sister in law was one of the caretakers. Aside from the period furnishings and the beautiful woodwork were the grounds. I took several photos, some inside but the grounds are what attracted my camera. It was named Magnolia Manor for a reason and I can't imagine any reason for cutting down all of your trees! I have no desire to visit any time soon.

    • profile image

      Eric_Rogers 6 years ago

      Very beautiful home - we have a few similar properties located in one of Aurora's several historic districts, particular the Tanner Historic District on the city's west side.

    • hlkljgk profile image

      hlkljgk 6 years ago from Western Mass

      never been, but it looks pretty interesting

    • profile image

      tpoint 7 years ago

      I want to go there and take a tour sometime!

    • Zen Automat profile image

      Zen Automat 7 years ago

      I like this, can I buy it and move it to a cliff overlooking the ocean.... what great fun that would be... nice lens.

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      I've never been to Magnolia Manor but it looks lovely and so interesting. Lensrolled to my Southern Magnolia Tree lens.

    • Louis Wery profile image

      Louis Wery 8 years ago from Sarasota, Florida USA

      Beautiful historic house! Thank you for shring its history.

    • TopStyleTravel profile image

      TopStyleTravel 8 years ago

      Magnolia Mansion looks lovely, thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      Magnolia Manor looks like it should be a set in a film!

    • profile image

      tpoint 9 years ago

      I have been past the Magnolia Manor, but I have never taken a tour inside yet. I plan to do so on my next visit! Great job on your posting!