Battle of Athens State Historic Site

Park Information

Battle of Athens State Historic Site is a place of peace and serenity. Its historic buildings, tree-studded landscape, and mile of Des Moines River frontage make the site a perfect place to hike, picnic or camp. But today’s peace belies the site’s history as the place where the most northern battle fought west of the Mississippi occurred, when about 500 Union soldiers repelled nearly four times their number of pro-Southern State Guardsmen. The site includes interpretation and tours of the battlefield as well as a number of historic buildings, including one that was pierced by a cannonball during the battle.

Park Hours

Historic Site Grounds:

  • April through October
    Sunrise to 10 p.m.
  • November through March
    Sunrise to sunset

Thome-Benning House (Cannonball House) hours


  • Temporary Tour Hours for April 2017
    10 a.m. - 4 p.m. (prior appointment if available), Wednesday through Sunday
    No tours, Monday and Tuesday
  • April through October
    10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday
  • November through March
    Available by prior arrangement only

Park Office hours

  • April through October
    8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., daily
  • November through March
    Office not regularly staffed; telephone is monitored for messages Monday through Friday