The Limberlost marsh was the perfect laboratory for author Gene Stratton-Porter to study nature. At a time when most women were homemakers, Porter created a lasting legacy of northern Indiana’s vanishing natural history through her writings and photos.

In the early 1900’s the Limberlost Swamp was described as a “treacherous swamp and quagmire, filled with every plant, animal and human danger known — in the worst of such locations in the central states.” Stretching for 13,000 acres the vast forest and swampland was legendary for its quicksand and unsavory characters. The swamp received its name from Limber Jim Corbus, who went hunting in the swamp and never returned. The familiar cry locally was “Limber’s lost!” To famed Indiana author Gene Stratton-Porter, the swamp was her playground, laboratory and inspiration for her acclaimed articles, fiction and photographs. Geneva (Gene) Grace Stratton was born in1863, near Wabash. Her parents passed along a love of the unspoiled outdoors — a love she kept throughout her life as a respected author, naturalist, photographer and illustrator. In 1886 Gene married Charles Porter, owner of a drug store in Geneva. After the birth of their daughter, Jeannette, they moved to Geneva, near the Limberlost Swamp, in 1888. Gene designed a 14 room, Queen Anne rustic log “cabin” completed in 1895. The interior is finished in both Victorian and Arts and Crafts styles. The Porters lived here until the swamp was drained in 1913. She then built a new home on the shore of Sylvan Lake near Rome City. It is also a state historic site.

In the 18 years that she lived at Limberlost, she wrote six of her 12 novels and five of her seven nature books, including the best-selling Freckles and A Girl of the Limberlost. An estimated 50 million people world-wide have read her works, and many of her novels were produced as motion pictures.


Limberlost Home



Limberlost State Historic Site is open:
Tuesday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m.

Closed Mondays.

From December 14, 2014 through March 31, 2015 Limberlost will be closed on Sundays and Mondays.


Visit the Limberlost Visitor Center to purchase tour tickets.

Adults $5
Seniors* $4
Children* $2
Children under 3 FREE


Indiana State Museum members and members of other State Historic Sites Friends Groups get FREE admission and a 10 percent discount in the gift shop!

*Child: ages 3 through 12
*Senior: age 60 and older

Group/School Tours: Special rates are available for groups of 10 or more and for school groups. Call 260.368.7428 to schedule your group.


Get directions to Limberlost State Historic Site.

Where to park

The Limberlost parking lot connects with U.S. Hwy 27, and is free to all visitors. The Limberlost Visitor Center is located within easy walking distance of the parking lot. If you are bringing someone with limited mobility, the Limberlost Visitor Center and the Limberlost Cabin are both handicap accessible.




Twilight Adventure


September 13
7 - 9 p.m.
$3 per person



Come explore the marsh as the sun goes down. Take a twilight hike, enjoy an animal presentation and roast marshmallows around a campfire. 


Event starts at Loblolly Marsh Pavilion .

Guided Tour of the Loblolly Marsh


September 20
10 - noon
$3 per child
Must pre-register



Attend a wetlands restoration overview at 10 a.m. in the Limberlost Visitor Center classroom, followed by a guided tour of the marsh.  

Bluegrass Jamboree


September 21
2 – 4 p.m.



Volunteer musicians gather on the site to play a variety of bluegrass, gospel and folk music. Bring an instrument and join the musicians or bring a lawn chair, sit back and enjoy the tunes. 


Event takes places at Limberlost Cabin.

Walk Like a Naturalist


September 24
9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
$3 per child
Pre-registration required



Preschoolers can "Walk like a Naturalist" by moving from station to stationed enjoying hands-on presentations about wetland wildlife and the home of famous Indiana naturalist Gene Stratton-Porter.


Event takes places at Limberlost Cabin.

Loblolly Bird Hike


October 5
9 - 11 a.m.
$3 per person



Join a Limberlost naturalist for a leisurely hike along the Loblolly Marsh Trails to observe both resident and migratory birds. 


Event takes places at Loblolly Marsh.

Creature Feature


October 18
11 a.m. - Noon
$3 per person



Spend time with a Limberlost naturalist or guest speaker. Get up close and personal with some of Indiana's wildlife. 


Event takes places at Limberlost Visitor Center.

Marsh After Dark


November 8
7 - 9 p.m.
$3 per person



Take a night trail hike. Enjoy an animal presentation and meet live animals. Listen to animal stories told around a campfire. Participate in the Firelight Theater Variety Show. Finish off a night of nocturnal adventure with a marshmallow roast. 


Event starts at Loblolly Marsh Pavilion. 

Passenger Pigeon Program by Joel Greenburg


November 9
2 - 3 p.m.



Author and birder Joel Greenberg presents a program on the extinction of the passenger pigeon, once the most numerous bird species in North America with a population in the billions. The year 2014 is the 100th anniversary of the death of the last passenger pigeon in the Cincinnati Zoo.


Event takes places at Limberlost Visitor Center.

Limberlost Movie Matinee


November 22
2 – 5 p.m.
$7 with advance registration 
$5 per Friends of Limberlost with advance registration
$10 at the door 



Enjoy a Saturday afternoon showing of 2 movies based on the books of Gene Stratton-Porter. An intermission will occur between the movies Laddie (1940) & A Girl of the Limberlost (1934). Refreshments are included in the admission price. Discounted tickets and guaranteed seating with advance reservations.


Event takes places at Limberlost Visitor Center.

Limberlost Christmas


December 13
11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
$3 per person



Families can visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus, enjoy Limber Jim's Swamp Show at the Limberlost Cabin, make holiday crafts in the Carriage House and  take part in the outdoor "Treasure Challenge."


All items in the gift shop will be discounted 20% or more, and the Limberlost State Historic Site will be providing complimentary refreshments from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Event takes places at Limberlost Visitor Center.

Limberlost New Year's Eve


December 31
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
$2 per person



Families can enjoy crafts, games, activities, and refreshments in the Visitor Center. A countdown celebration leads up to a noon balloon drop and plenty of New Year’s Hoopla and Hoop-tee-doo!


Event takes places at Limberlost Visitor Center.

Contact us


Randy Lehman
Site Manager


Curt Burnette
Naturalist/Program Specialist


Limberlost State Historic Site

202 East 6th St.
Geneva, IN 46740


Phone: 260.368.7428
Fax: 260.368.7007




The Limberlost marsh was the perfect laboratory for Gene Stratton-Porter to study nature. In a time when most women were homemakers, Stratton-Porter created a lasting legacy of northern Indiana's vanishing natural history through her published novels, nature studies and photographs.  


Academic topics covered:

  • Natural History 
  • Environmentalism 


Grades K – 12

Limberlost Cabin Tour


Learn about the home and natural environment that inspired Gene Stratton-Porter to write her bestselling books. Students can also learn about Indiana's original ecosystem, Gene's role as a naturalist and how technology, culture and family life have evolved since the late 19th century.  

Grades PreK – 12

Limberlost Wetland School Group Tour


Discover the plants and animals that inspired Gene Stratton-Porter to become a leading naturalist of her time. 



Grades 3 – 12

Discover Nature

Fee: $4 per person
Reservations required



August 28 from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Homeschool students and their families move through stations uncovering the fascinating world of author Gene Stratton-Porter and the natural science behind the famous Limberlost Swamp. 


Rental Information


Large Meeting Room
Located in the Limberlost Visitor Center, this space is great for large professional gatherings.

Small Meeting Room
Located in the Limberlost Visitor Center, this space is great for any small group.

Limberlost Cabin Grounds
The grounds surrounding Limberlost Cabin provides a picturesque backdrop for any gathering.