Ashland Grounds as Public Park: The Formal Garden

YOU ARE HERE -> 1950s-today When Ashland opened as a museum in 1950 the estate featured seventeen acres open daily to the public.  Although the mansion was the primary focus, from the beginning the Henry Clay Memorial Foundation emphasized Ashland’s spacious grounds and encouraged visitors to “pause” before entering the mansion to see the grounds, … More Ashland Grounds as Public Park: The Formal Garden

New Life as a House Museum: Just Like A “Real Home”

YOU ARE HERE -> 1950-1970s SEE ALSO: Opening Day! Perhaps you will want to join the thousands who visit the historic old home of Henry Clay… In the 1950s the Henry Clay Memorial Foundation had begun to advertise, inviting Americans to Ashland, the new patriotic shrine. The public responded wholeheartedly to these invitations.  Not only … More New Life as a House Museum: Just Like A “Real Home”

Historic Homestead as College Campus

YOU ARE HERE ->1866-1879 After the Civil War, Kentucky University took ownership of Ashland.   (SEE ALSO: Clay Family Loses Ashland, University of Kentucky Predecessor Moves In.) Regent John B. Bowman believed that Kentucky University was to be permanently located at Ashland, so he made plans for the buildings and grounds to prepare them for University … More Historic Homestead as College Campus

Paying Tribute to Henry Clay at Ashland

YOU ARE HERE -> 1857 After Henry Clay’s death, his national historic-themed display at Ashland evolved into son James’s Henry Clay tribute display.  James and Susan continued the practice of displaying artifacts within the mansion for public viewing, but now the collection centered on those related to Clay’s life.  They honored Henry Clay’s collection by … More Paying Tribute to Henry Clay at Ashland

Ashland Restoration Raises Interpretive Questions

YOU ARE HERE -> 1990s The 1991-92 restoration was a major turning point in Ashland’s history.  Not only was the house repaired and renovated, but its interpretation was thoroughly examined, questioned, and redone.  The restoration project became a remarkable opportunity to consider the interpretation “from scratch,” curator Eric Brooks says.  For the first time people … More Ashland Restoration Raises Interpretive Questions

The Cottage At Ashland

It is the picturesque little building that most Ashland visitors first encounter: The Keeper’s – or Gardener’s – Cottage.  Adjacent to today’s modern parking lot, this original structure from Henry Clay’s time is a charmer. The Cottage was designed in 1846 by Thomas Lewinski, the Lexington architect who had helped Clay with some mansion remodeling, … More The Cottage At Ashland

Ashland Grounds as Public Park: The Formal Garden

YOU ARE HERE -> 1950s-today When Ashland opened as a museum in 1950 the estate featured seventeen acres open daily to the public.  Although the mansion was the primary focus, from the beginning the Henry Clay Memorial Foundation emphasized Ashland’s spacious grounds and encouraged visitors to “pause” before entering the mansion to see the grounds, … More Ashland Grounds as Public Park: The Formal Garden