Lexington, Ky., is a pretty city. Sweetums and I visited last year and enjoyed our walking tour of sites related to Mary Todd Lincoln’s family.
I posted about a couple of sites since then but I am just now getting around to showing you some photos of the historical homes we visited.
The most historically important home was one were Mary Todd Lincoln lived before marrying Abe Lincoln. She was born in a nearby home in Lexington that was difficult to see through foliage and appeared to be privately owned. The home purchased by her father Robert Todd in 1832, however, is open to the public part of the year as a museum. It is closed in winter so check dates here. It was built in 1806 as an inn. Mary lived in the home until 1839 when she went to Illinois, where she met Lincoln. She and the president returned to the Lexington home to visit her family at least once.
A history on the home’s website says, “Mary was the daughter of a prominent Lexington native Robert Smith Todd and his first wife Eliza Parker, who died when Mary was six years old. Mary was the fourth of the eventual sixteen children born in her father’s two marriages. A businessman and politician, Robert provided his children with social standing, education, and material advantages that Mary’s future husband, Abraham Lincoln, lacked in his own youth.” Visitors can pick up maps for a walking tour to other sites visited by Todd and Lincoln.
READ MORE ON LEXINGTON, KY
- The historic Lexington Opera House
- Lexington’s Transylvania University
- The fork in the road
- The man who was president for a day
- The World’s Largest Dixie Cup
(Story continues after photos)
We also took photos of the Maria B. Dudley House, an ornate Victorian at 215 N. Mill Street in the Gratz Park Historic District.
GratzPark.org says, “The castle-like townhouse of Mrs. Maria B. Dudley was built around 1879, designed by architect Phelix Lundin. Mrs. Dudley, who grew up in Loudoun House on Castlewood Drive, is said to have wanted a ‘small city house.’ The land on which it stands was earlier part of the Hunt-Morgan garden next door. The house is Victorian Eclectic in style, featuring an octagonal tower and etched glass at the entry.” The home stands out among the Federal-style houses on the street.
The National Park Service says, “The Hunt-Morgan House, historically known as Hopemont, was built by John Wesley Hunt in 1814. Hunt was known as the first millionaire west of the Alleghenies and earned his fortune from the mercantile business shortly after Lexington was established. Other notable personalities have also resided at Hopemont. Hunt’s grandson, General John Hunt Morgan, was a dashing general in the Confederate Army who gained the nickname “The Thunderbolt of the Confederacy” through his many raids and daring military feats. John Wesley Hunt’s great grandson, Dr. Thomas Hunt Morgan, was born in the house in 1866. Dr. Morgan became famous for his work in genetics and is one of a very few Kentuckians to have won the Nobel Prize.”