World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Pere Marquette State Park

Article Id: WHEBN0005154719
Reproduction Date:

Title: Pere Marquette State Park  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: List of protected areas of Illinois, Illinois State Park Lodges and Cabins Thematic Resources, Jersey County, Illinois, Pere Marquette (disambiguation), Sam Vadalabene Bike Trail
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Pere Marquette State Park

Pere Marquette State Park
Map showing the location of Pere Marquette State Park
Map of the U.S. state of Illinois showing the location of Pere Marquette State Park
Location Jersey County, Illinois, USA
Nearest city Grafton, Illinois
Area 8,050 acres (3,260 ha)
Established 1931
Governing body Illinois Department of Natural Resources

Pere Marquette State Park is an 8,050-acre (3,260 ha) protected area in southwestern Jersey County, Illinois, United States.[1] It is located near the city of Grafton, Illinois, at the confluence of the Mississippi River and the Illinois River. The park is located on Illinois Route 100, which at this location is also part of both the Great River Road and the Meeting of the Great Rivers Scenic Byway. The park is operated and maintained by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, and is Illinois' largest state park in area. The park is also part of the Confluence Greenway and is at the northwestern end of the 21.5-mile (34.6 km) Sam Vadalabene Bike Trail.


  • History of park 1
  • What they found 2
  • Amenities and Activities 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

History of park

The park was named in honor of Father (Père) Jacques Marquette, a Jesuit priest who was the co-leader, with his comrade Louis Jolliet, of a 1673 voyage of exploration on the Mississippi River.[1] Marquette was the first European to map the mouth of the Illinois River, which he and Joliet used to return from the Mississippi to the Great Lakes.

What they found

At the mouth of the Illinois River, the explorers found one of the richest and most densely settled regions of North America, fully utilized by Native Americans of the Illini Confederacy. Large catches of fish, shellfish, and waterbirds were yielded from the rivers and adjacent wetlands. On top of the river bluffs, fertile windblown loess and topsoil could be used to grow corn, beans, and squash.

During the years since 1673, many changes have taken place to this region. The beds of mussels and other shellfish have dwindled, harmed by over-harvesting and possible disease. Exotic fish, such as the Asian carps, have swum into the rivers and have partially replaced native species such as largemouth bass, bluegill, catfish, and crappie.

One signature Pere Marquette State Park species, the American bald eagle, has made a remarkable comeback, that started in the 1990s. Hundreds of eagles that nest in the wetland areas to the north congregate in and around the park areas in late winter to catch and eat fish during the cold months.

In the late 1950s through 1968 the area just north of the Lover's Leap lookout area was the site of an active Project Nike missile site, constructed for the defense of St. Louis during the Cold War.

Amenities and Activities

Pere Marquette State Park Lodge and Cabins
Location Box 158, Grafton, Illinois
Area 16 acres (6.5 ha)
Governing body State
MPS Illinois State Parks Lodges and Cabins TR
NRHP Reference # 85002405[2]
Added to NRHP March 4, 1985

Pere Marquette State Park was founded in 1931 as the Piasa Bluffs State Park, but was soon renamed. The park's heart is a Civilian Conservation Corps-built lodge, first built in the 1930s and later expanded in 1985 to contain seventy-two rooms. A visitor center, with exhibits on local ecology and history, opened in 1997. The lodge and surrounding cabins were listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.[2]

The park contains approximately 12 miles (19 km) of marked trails. Approximately 230 species of bird have been logged in the park, and a horseback riding stable operates during the warmer months. There is also a 2,000-acre (810 ha) public hunting area for deer, squirrel, wild turkey, and other target species. There are also several launching ramps for private boats to enter the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers.[1]

The park includes a geologic anticline, an upward arching of stratified rock dated to crustal movement circa 200 million years BP. The feature has been named the Lincoln Anticline. At Cap-au-Grès the two sides of the fold can be observed having parted and moved away from each other.[3]


  1. ^ a b c "Pere Marquette - State Park".  
  2. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places.  
  3. ^ Illinois Atlas and Gazetteer. Freeport, Maine: DeLorme Mapping. 1991. p. 11. ISBN 0-89933-213-7. 

External links

  • Pere Marquette Lodge & Conference Center
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.