Skip Navigation

end of KET nav
About the Series | KY Life Host | Paw Pals | Contact/DVD Info
Program 617

1. Abe’s boyhood home
2. Lexington’s starting point
3. fighting airplane fires
4. log cabins, then and now
Season 6 Menu

Larue County

For more information:
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site, 2995 Lincoln Farm Rd., Hodgenville, KY 42748, (270) 358-3137

Producer, videographer: Dave Shuffett
Editor: Dan Taulbee

Abraham Lincoln Toddled Here

Knob Creek Farm

In Larue County, just outside Hodgenville, a marble monument marks the spot where Abraham Lincoln came into the world. (That’s not the actual Lincoln family log cabin inside, but a facsimile representing historians’ best guess at what it probably looked like.) That place is a National Historic Site, and tourists dutifully stop off to pay homage to the president who led America through the Civil War.

But about ten miles down the road, there’s another, lesser-known stop on the Lincoln Trail: Knob Creek Farm, where the family lived during Abe’s early childhood. The Lincolns moved there when baby Abraham was 2 and lived there until moving to Indiana when he was 7. So this Kentucky Life visit to the farm lets history buffs see the same vistas that greeted Lincoln as he was first exploring the world around him.

At the time this segment was taped, Knob Creek Farm was not a national park, but a group of local citizens was working to raise the money to buy the property and donate it to the National Park Service. Their efforts paid off on November 6, 2001, when Knob Creek Farm officially became federal property. It is now administered as part of the Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site.

Kentucky Life paid a second visit to Knob Creek in Program 1118. To further explore Lincoln’s family roots in Kentucky, you can visit Lincoln Homestead State Park in Washington County, which preserves the house where Lincoln’s parents met and courted.

By the way, Kentucky does have a Lincoln County, too—but it’s not connected with Abe’s family. In fact, it predated the future president’s birth by 29 years. Created during the Revolutionary War, it was named for Benjamin Lincoln, an American general who was a prisoner of the British at the time.

Fayette County

For more information:
Friends of McConnell Springs, P.O. Box 12196, Lexington, KY 40581, (859) 225-4073

Producer: Ernie Lee Martin

Where Lexington Sprang Into Being

McConnell Springs

And speaking of the Revolutionary War ...

Our next segment continues the theme of “beginnings” with a visit to McConnell Springs, site of the founding of Lexington. In 1775, William McConnell and a group of fellow frontier explorers were camped by a spring in what is now Central Kentucky when they got the word that the first battle of the Revolution had been fought in Massachusetts at a town called Lexington. Then and there, they christened their campsite Lexington in its honor. The permanent spring made it a natural place for a settlement, and eventually Lexington would become Kentucky’s second largest city (and one of the largest cities in America not located on a more substantial body of water).

Over the next two centuries, the grounds of the original campsite hosted, in succession, a mill, a gunpowder factory, a distillery, and a dairy farm. Abandoned in the mid-20th century, McConnell Springs was “rediscovered” in the mid-1970s, when author Carolyn Murray-Wooley published her book The Founding of Lexington. In 1993, the Friends of McConnell Springs was formed to buy the land and begin turning it into a center for education in both history and nature. After removing hundreds of tons of trash, the Friends created a hiking trail, stabilized the ruins of past buildings, and built an amphitheater and an Education Center. McConnell Springs is now a park administered by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

McConnell Springs is located just outside downtown Lexington off Old Frankfort Pike.

Fayette County

For more information:
• Blue Grass Airport Fire Training Center, (859) 425-3101

Producer, videographer: Treg Ward
Editor: Dan Taulbee

Where There’s Smoke

Airport firefighter training

Things are heating up at Lexington’s Blue Grass Airport, where Kentucky Life visits an unusual training session for firefighters. Designed for crews responding to an airport emergency, this training focuses on fighting blazes on and around airplanes, where the presence of jet fuel creates special hazards. Our visit features dramatic footage of crews practicing at night, using a mock airplane fuselage.

Rockcastle County

Producer: Ernie Lee Martin

Home Sweet Cabin

Log cabins

In a way, the final segment in this episode circles back around to where we started, with a salute to the humble log cabin. At Renfro Valley, the entertainment complex dedicated to traditional country music, developer Jerry Hayes and Gov. Paul Patton talk about the inspiration behind the Brush Arbor Appalachian Homestead, a historical exhibit featuring several log cabins that were rescued from various parts of the state. We also meet an artist who just likes coming home to walls made of logs.

SEASON 6 PROGRAMS: 601602603604605606607608: The Dixie Highway609
610: Along U.S. 68611612613614615616617618619620621622623

< Previous Program | Next Program >

Sadie and Charlie Kentucky Life Home
Past Seasons
Browse by TopicAbout the Series
Our HostsPaw PalsOnline VideosContact/DVD Info
Kentucky Screensavers

600 Cooper Drive, Lexington, KY 40502 (859) 258-7000 (800) 432-0951