Last week we had 3 gorgeous days of weather. Since we arrived in Kentucky we’ve had mostly cold temperatures, rain, snow, and cloudy skies. On top of that a few of the Nomad bunch had gotten sick, and one Nomad kiddo took off to TX to visit one of his friends. Exploring the area had not went off the way I had originally planned. However, we do what we do……improvise, adapt, and overcome. Daddy Nomad was in The Marines, after all, and he has instilled this value into all of us. Finally, when I had all but given up on doing anything in KY, the sunshine came, and we even got temperatures in the 60°s. Not bad for February. We immediately took that opportunity to get out of the house.
We were able to adventure off for some family outings on Thursday, and Saturday; Friday was just me, and my babies though. Okay, they’re far from babies anymore, but they are forced to deal with me calling them babies F-O-R-E-V-E-R.
It was still a school day for us, so I wanted to find something to do that was educational. I settled on making the day about Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States. Being in KY, where he was born, we focused on the humble beginnings of his life.
First, we went to his birth place in Hodgenville. There they have the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park. This park is free to visit, but would be worth leaving a small donation if you can. It’s a great park. There is a visitor center that plays a short video, and has a small museum to walk through. You can do it in 20-30 minutes. Also there is the actual birthplace memorial. The first memorial ever built for a US President, I might add. Notice, I didn’t say first monument……first memorial. This was done before the Jefferson Memorial in DC, and by the same guy (John Russell Pope). This stop was THE friendliest National Park Service stop I have EVER had. These guys were awesome. I wish I could remember the names of the volunteers that greeted us, and told us stories…..they were the sweetest, and kindest guys, and they seemed to REALLY love what they were doing. I do remember one of them looked like Mark Twain. I’m a Missouri girl…..Mark Twain has a piece of my heart, so that stood out to me.
After we left the birthplace, we headed to Knob Creek to see Lincoln’s boyhood home. He often wrote about memories he had during his time at Knob Creek; one of them being how he almost drowned, and was saved by a friend. Crazy enough, on our way trying to find Knob Creek, I took a wrong turn, and ended up at the cemetery where Lincoln’s friend, who saved him from drowning, is buried, Austin Gollaher. Anyway, the Lincoln family lived at Knob Creek for only 7 years before moving on to Indiana. This park was a little disappointing only because there really wasn’t anything there. There are no park rangers, no visitor center; just a couple of signs, and cabins. We did venture down to the creek that Lincoln was said to have almost drowned in.
Lastly, we drove back to downtown Hodgenville to see the Lincoln Museum. The museum is located right in the middle of downtown; literally you can’t miss it. Across from the museum is a large statue of adult Lincoln, and one of little boy Lincoln. Finding parking was no issue; it’s street parking, and free. The museum is open Monday-Saturday, 8:30-4:30, and on Sunday 12:30-4:30. Keep in mind, this part of KY is in EST time. Admission is only $3 for 12 years old, and over; under 12 is only $1.50. I felt the museum was well worth the price. It was a great way to wrap up our day of Lincoln in KY. It’s a mostly wax museum with different scenes of Lincoln’s life portrayed. I found it very interesting, and we all enjoyed it quite a bit. It only took us an hour to walk through, and we looked at, and read everything. Definitely short, but sweet.
If you have interest in United States Presidents, and their history, this is an area that I would highly recommend making a quick stop. We seem to find our way to many Presidential homes, even when we don’t really plan it. I didn’t really have any expectations for the day or what we were going to see, but I was thoroughly impressed. Great place, great people, great time. If you find yourself in the Bluegrass State, Lincoln’s birthplace is worth a visit. Happy Trails, Y’all!