Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois

In addition to the Victorian Village and old doll house exhibit at Rockford’s Midway Village, another museum stands out among the attractions. Midway Village Museum is a small museum at 20,000 square feet that packs in exhibits that explore the history of the area. One of the featured, and most popular, exhibits is called The Missing Link: Socks, Monkeys and Rockford’s Industrial Past, a showcase of sock monkeys and their history. That’s right Silly Americans, a sock monkey museum!

Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois

Sock monkeys are iconic stuffed animals made famous by the red-heeled socks that make up their bodies. Rockford’s sock-knitting industry played an important part in their creation and formation, from the 1870s until all the way through the 1990s.

The Road Trip Journal & Activity Book - Everything You Need to Have and Record an Epic Road Trip! By Valerie Bromann

The Road Trip Journal & Activity Book

Everything You Need to Have and Record an Epic Road Trip!

Enjoy fun games and challenges to pass the time on your next road trip and have a keepsake to look back on for years to come with this entertaining must-have for your next vacation.

From 1932 to 1992, Rockford’s Nelson Knitting Company of Rockford manufactured and sold Rockford Red Heel socks. The sock monkeys were born in the Great Depression as folk art. The company acquired the patent for the sock monkey doll in the 1950s and placed a pattern in each pack of socks.

The Midway Village exhibit features a plethora of the stuffed sock monkeys: some decked out in costumes and some in their own naked glory. Some vintage, some brand new. There’s even a giant sock monkey made of fiberglass or three! The museum exhibit also has plenty of chances to learn about the history of the red-heeled sock, the history of the sock monkey, and to see historical documents, including the original patents.

Want more? Every March, the museum celebrates Sock Monkey Madness Festival with costumes, games, vendors, performances, and a Make-A-Monkey Workshop. And be sure to look outside for Soxanne: a giant fiberglass sock monkey!

More photos from the Rockford Sock Monkey Museum

Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois
Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois

While traveling through Rockford, be sure to also check out another nearby Illinois roadside attraction: Gertrude the Cow, a giant fiberglass statue in Lockwood Park Trailside Equestrian Centre and Children’s Farm.

Sock Monkey Museum at Midway Village Museum Center

Location: 6799 Guilford Road, Rockford, IL 61107
Cost: Main Museum Center Exhibits are $9 Adults, $7 Child (ages 5-12), $8 Senior (62+). Free admission for museum members and children ages 0-4.
Summer Hours: Tuesday- Saturday, 10am – 4pm; Sunday Noon – 4pm
Fall Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 10am – 4pm; Sunday Noon – 4pm
Date of Photos: May 9, 2008

Visit the museum’s official website for up-to-date hours and admission costs.

Pin this Illinois Roadside Attraction to save for your road trip itinerary!

The Sock Monkey museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois celebrates the famous stuffed animals and the town's sock-knitting industry. It features vintage stuffed monkeys and a giant sock monkey made from fiberglass! Visit this weird roadside attraction and museum on an Illinois road trip or Rockford vacation and add it to your travel itineraries and bucket lists!
#IllinoisRoadsideAttractions #IllinoisRoadsideAttraction #RoadsideAttractions #RoadsideAttraction #RoadTrip #IllinoisRoadTrip

The Sock Monkey museum at Midway Village in Rockford, Illinois celebrates the famous stuffed animals and the town’s sock-knitting industry. It features vintage stuffed monkeys and a giant sock monkey made from fiberglass! Visit this weird roadside attraction and museum on an Illinois road trip or Rockford vacation and add it to your travel itineraries and bucket lists!


Valerie Bromann

Founder & ROad Trip Expert

Valerie Bromann is a a website manager, content creator, and writer from Chicago, Illinois (currently living in Dallas, Texas). As an avid road tripper who has visited hundreds of roadside attractions, Val always pull over for a world’s largest thing. Founder of Silly America and author of The Road Trip Journal & Activity Book, she visits, photographs, and writes about all the weird tourist destinations she visits and offers road trip planning advice and inspiration based on her own travels so you can hit the road for yourself.

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Last modified: December 29, 2023
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The Road Trip Journal & Activity Book - Everything You Need to Have and Record an Epic Road Trip! By Valerie Bromann

The Road Trip Journal & Activity Book

Everything You Need to Have and Record an Epic Road Trip!

BY Valerie Bromann

Enjoy fun games and challenges to pass the time on your next road trip and have a keepsake to look back on for years to come with this entertaining must-have for your next vacation.

The road trip you’ve been dreaming of starts here! Journal about your stops and get to know your fellow passengers with activities and exercises designed to pass the time and bring you closer together. Instead of “Are we there yet?” you’ll find yourself asking, “We’re there already?”. Complete with prompts you can turn to while driving between locations, this journal will one day be a memento of your life-changing trip.