Our family toured Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park over spring break. Located in Hodgenville, Kentucky, the park is about 2.5 hours south of Cincinnati. One of several national parks celebrating Abraham Lincoln, this park is located where he was born and lived as a young child before moving to Illinois. I love how National Historical Parks bring history to life for the kids. It is much easier to relate to important historical events when you can see the actual artifacts and locales instead of just reading about them.
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park: Visitor Center
Our first stop after entering the pretty park was the Visitor Center where we watched the 15 minute movie about Lincoln’s early years. We then picked up Junior Ranger books for the kids before touring the exhibits inside the small center which included the Lincoln family Bible, a replica of the inside of a period cabin, Lincoln Logs to play with, and a cross section of a tree that had been on the property during Lincoln’s life before it recently died. We spent about a half hour inside looking at everything.
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park: Memorial Building
It was a beautiful spring day so we took our time exploring the outside part of the park. There is a gorgeous Memorial Building which houses a symbolic birthplace cabin with 56 granite steps leading to the entrance, one for each year of Lincoln’s life. We stopped to read the several interpretive signs around the memorial telling about the area and Lincoln’s early life.
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park: Sinking Spring
Located right next to the Memorial Building is the Sinking Spring which was the water source for the Lincoln family while on the farm. We walked down the stairs to the spring and read the various interpretive signs. The park grounds are peaceful and beautiful with large trees interspersed throughout and many benches to stop and sit while out exploring. Maya and Garrett completed their Junior Ranger badge requirements while we walked around the area.
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park: Knob Creek
After touring this section of the park we drove about 10 minutes to Knob Creek which was where the Lincoln family moved after a land dispute forced them to leave his birthplace cabin. Here was another symbolic cabin and also the namesake creek in which Lincoln almost drowned as a young child before he was pulled out of the water by his friend. It is hard to imagine what our country would be like if Lincoln had drowned and never become President!
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park: Junior Ranger Program
Once we had viewed all of the exhibits we headed the 7 miles back to the Visitor Center so that the kids could get their Junior Ranger badges. All in all we spent about 2 hours at the park which was plenty of time to leisurely tour the park. It was a very nice way to spend a beautiful spring afternoon.
Have you been to Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park? I’d love to hear about your visit!