Macktown Living History Educational Center
The remnants of Winnebago County’s earliest settlement will be found on a forested bluff overlooking the Rock and Pecatonica Rivers in Rockton, Illinois at the Macktown Living History Educational Center. It was founded in the mid-1830’s by Stephen Andrew Mack, Jr., and his wife, Mary Hononegah. Macktown, then known as Pekatonic, represents a time and place of change on the Illinois frontier when the fur trade collided with a progressive world.
In prosperous times, Pekatonic boasted of the Mack’s two-story home and store, a furniture store, a school room, a shoemaker’s shop, a tavern, a trading post, fur trapper’s cabins, and other homes belonging to the population of 200-300. A ferry and bridge traversed the Rock River.
Following Mack’s death in 1850 and the destruction of the bridge in 1851, the Macktown settlement area failed to thrive. The northern part of the settlement prospered and officially became known as Rockton in 1846 or 1847.
The Winnebago County Forest Preserve District, which owns the land on which Macktown and the trading post once sat, and the Macktown Living History Education Center are working to restore Macktown to its 1830 – 1846 historic condition. last full weekend of april with both a sat and sun in april