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 April 11, 2015 Limberlost will be closed on Sundays. 

Tours on demand. Last tour starts at 4 p.m.


Visit the Limberlost Visitor Center to purchase tour tickets.

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


Indiana State Museum members 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.




Discover the Limberlost 


August 27
10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
$5 per person
Reservations Required

Designed for home school academies. Parents and children move through learning stations that teach participants academic subject matter in a hands-on, interactive method. Call the site for details on the academic area selected for this year’s event. Pack a lunch and eat on the grounds.

Twilight Adventure 


September 12
7 - 9 p.m.
$4 per adult 
$3 per person
Ages 3 and under are free

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. 

Bluegrass Jamboree


September 20
2 - 4 p.m. 
Donations Encouraged

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 and sit back and enjoy the tunes.

Marsh After Dark


November 7
7 - 9 p.m. 
$4 per adult 
$3 per child
Ages 3 and under are free


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.

Limberlost Christmas Open House and Gift Shop Sale 


December 12
11 a.m. - 3 p.m. 
$2 per person for activities 

All items in the gift shop discounted 20% or more and includes complimentary refreshments. Enjoy Limber Jim’s Swamp Show in the Limberlost Cabin, make a holiday craft in the Carriage House and outdoor treasure hunt.

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 leading up to the countdown celebration at 8 p.m. which includes a balloon drop and plenty of New Year’s Hoopla and Hoop-tee-doo!

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.