Kentucky Historical Society
NPS Explores Possibility of Kentucky Lincoln National Heritage Area
Frankfort, Ky. (Dec. 17, 2009)— The National Park Service (NPS) has announced the initiation of a feasibility study for establishing a group of Kentucky Lincoln-related sites as a National Heritage Area.
Lincoln, who was born in Kentucky and lived here until he was seven, formed important and lasting relationships within the Commonwealth. His early experiences in Kentucky and the lifelong ties he established influenced his personal and political life.
The feasibility study—the result of Congressional legislation—was initiated in 2008 by Sen. Jim Bunning, in consultation with Kentucky Historical Society (KHS). The legislation by Congress directs NPS to study sites associated with “Lincoln’s Kentucky” to determine if those resources meet the criteria for designation as a national heritage area.
National heritage areas are locally managed areas, designated by Congress, where natural, cultural, historic and recreational resources combine to form a cohesive, distinctive landscape. The national heritage area designation supports local residents’ efforts at preserving their area’s natural and cultural heritage without affecting individual property ownership rights.
Among the sites in the proposed area are the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History, the Old State Capitol and the Kentucky Military History Museum at the Old State Arsenal—all sites on the KHS history campus.
The study, which will take place over the next year, will assess local support, identify a potential local management entity and study the overall feasibility for the proposed heritage area. After the study is completed, findings will be reported to the secretary of the interior and to Congress.
To learn more about the project, join NPS for the following public meetings in January:
• Jan. 5, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.: Elizabethtown Tourism & Convention Bureau
• Jan. 5, 5-7 p.m.: Lincoln Museum Community Room, Hodgenville
• Jan. 6, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.: Farmington Historic Plantation, Louisville
• Jan. 6, 5-7 p.m.: Farmington Historic Plantation, Louisville
• Jan. 7, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.: Main Street Playhouse, Nicholasville
• Jan. 7, 6-8 p.m.: Lexington Public Library, Central Branch, Lexington
At these meetings, study team members will provide general information about national heritage areas and feasibility studies, answer questions from the public and gather ideas about the study. The meetings will be held in an open house format and will include a short presentation that will be given twice during each two-hour meeting.
To find out more about the criteria for this distinction and the Kentucky Lincoln Bicentennial, visit www.kylincoln.org.