One of the oldest operating hotels in Illinois has seen presidents, celebrities, war, and financial trouble but is still in operation today and beautiful to stay at.

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The DeSoto House Hotel is one of those hotels you wish the walls could talk. Located in Galena Illinois, this hotel is rich with history. First opened in the 18050s and in operating for over 170 years, this hotel has been through it all. Multiple owners, economic ups and downs, and Presidential speeches.

Perhaps its most notable visitor was President  Abraham Lincoln, who spoke from its Main Street balcony on July 23, 1856, in support of John Fremont’s bid for presidency.  Just two years later, on July 25, 1858 Senator Stephen A. Douglas spoke from the same balcony.

When it was first built, the hotel was known as being the "Largest Hotel in the West." Now, I've never been to Galena (I know I have to go), but this hotel seems to be the place to stay when you visit. It has a four-story atrium courtyard used for meals and private banquets, Generals' Restaurant (named for the nine Civil War Generals), and Green Street Tavern which has been in that location since 1883.

Galena itself is a magical place to visit for a quick getaway. Known for its architecture and history, the DeSoto Hosue Hotel just adds to the coziness of the town and seems to be the place to stay when you visit the historical town.

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