Hardin County Lincoln Sites

Lincoln Heritage House and Sarah Bush Johnston Memorial Cabin

Location: Freeman Lake Park, Elizabethtown, KY
Phone: (800) 437-0092
Contact the site for visit information.
Online resources: An online brochure offers information about the Johnson cabin. The Lincoln Heritage Trail web site includes information about both sites.
Related online KET video segments:
Stepmother Sarah Bush’s Impact on Lincoln

Hardin County History Museum

Location: 201 West Dixie Avenue, Elizabethtown, KY 42701
Phone: (270) 763-8339
Costs: Contact site for information.
Online Resources: The museum’s web site includes a virtual tour of exhibits, as well as sections on the Civil War, Lincoln’s family and friends, and John Hunt Morgan.

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The story of Abraham Lincoln would not be completed without a study of Sarah Bush Johnston Lincoln, his stepmother. The Hardin County sites help to document the life of this lady who provided love and support for her stepson in the years after the death of his mother Nancy. These sites help complete the circuit of sites related to Lincoln’s Kentucky connections. Unfortunately, the Lincoln Heritage House, on which Thomas Lincoln did the carpentry, was gutted by a fire in May 2009; however, plans are underway to rebuild the site using salvaged timbers. The Sarah Bush Johnston Memorial Cabin is a replica of the cabin Sarah Bush lived in when she married Thomas Lincoln in 1819.

Hardin County is also home to the Helm family, into which Mary Todd Lincoln’s sister Emilie married. It was Emilie Helm’s visit to the White House during the Lincoln years that contributed to concerns about Confederacy loyalties in the White House.

The Hardin County History Museum offers a variety of exhibits, including a tribute to Lincoln’s family and friends. The Abraham Lincoln Family and Friends section of the museum’s web site includes images of the interpretative markers that can be found in Hardin County. A video presentation offers a very comprehensive history of Thomas Lincoln’s time in Kentucky. The site also includes lesson plans for grades one through five that will be very helpful for pre-visit and post-visit activities.