Generally regarded as one of America's greatest Presidents, Abraham Lincoln guided the nation (or half of it) through the dark and calamitous days of the bitter Civil War. Abraham Lincoln looms large in American history. Today his birthplace and early childhood homes are preserved in the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park. It is always important to remember the past and understand why things are the way they are and how we got to where we are now.


For those visiting Kentucky and would like to see a very unusual attraction. Consider visiting the life-sized Noah's Ark and Creationist Museum attraction with exhibits complete with humans with dinosaurs and giants!

About Abraham Lincoln's Historical Significance

Before Abraham Lincoln was president he was an American lawyer and statesman. As president, he belonged to the abolitionist and newly formed Republican Party (at the time the Democrat Party was largely against abolition). He is credited with preserving the Union and bolstering the powers of the federal government.

While he was born into poverty in what is known as Kentucky, he was mostly raised on the frontier mostly in Indiana before moving to Illinois and becoming a state legislator and then US Congressman from Illinois.

He accomplished many more things in these darkest days of American history as the country ripped itself apart. One of his greatest accomplishments was promoting the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution - that outlawed slavery throughout the nation. For another icon of American freedom and liberty, see here for the history of the Liberty Bell.

  • Birth Place: Sinking Spring, South Of Hodgenville, Kentucky
  • Boyhood Home: Knob Creek Farm, Northeast Of Hodgenville, Kentucky (Lived When He Was 2 to 7 Years Old)
  • Parents: Thomas And Nancy Lincoln
  • Birthday: February 12, 1809

Abraham Lincoln was one of four US presidents to be assassinated (two are largely forgotten in the public imagination). They are:

  • Abraham Lincoln: 16th President On April 14, 1865
  • James A. Garfield: 20th President On July 2, 1881 (Less than Four Months After Taking Office)
  • William McKinley: 25th President On September 6, 1901
  • John F. Kennedy: 35th President On November 22, 1963
  • Wounded: In Addition, Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagon Were Wounded In Assassination Attempts

Related: Kentucky Derby: Everything You Didn't Know About The Oldest Sporting Event In America

About The Memorial Park

The cabin preserved within the 1911 neoclassical memorial building is not the real cabin, but a symbolic one. The actual log cabin that Lincoln was born in is believed to have been dismantled long ago - before 1865.

There is symbolism in the sites. The Memorial Building e.g. runs on a theme of the number 16. It has 16 windows, 16 rosettes on the ceiling, and 16 fence poles - these represent Lincoln's status as the United State's 16th president.

  • Steps: There Are 56 Steps Leading To The Entrance - These Represent His Age When He Was Assassinated

Those visiting the site are surprised to see an improbable Greek-styled temple in the Kentucky woods. It was designed by the architect John Russell Pope and built between 1909 and 1911 and then gifted to the US government afterward.

Even though the Lincoln Cabin within it is a replica, it does show the president's humble origins. It is only a one-room cabin measuring 13 X 17 feet (the actual cabin is thought to be a little larger at 16 X 18 feet. It has only one door, a window, a stone fireplace, and a dirt floor.

As one approaches the entrance to the memorial building one will see the inscription:

"Here over the log cabin where Abraham Lincoln was born, destined to preserve the Union and free the slave, a grateful people have dedicated this memorial to unity, peace, and brotherhood among the states."

Visiting The Memorial

Abraham Lincoln Birthplace Unit

One should start their tour here. Exhibits include the original Lincoln Family Bible, Boundary Oak exhibit, Lincoln Overview, Pioneer Life, and much more. There is also a 15-minute educational video called Abraham Lincoln: The Kentucky Years. Facilities on-site include restrooms, an information desk, and water fountains (may be closed due to Covid-19).

  • Hours: Open Daily Between 9.00 am and 5.00 pm
  • Closed: New Year's Day, Thanksgiving, And Christmas
  • Entry Fee: Entry is Free of Charge

Related: What To Expect Visiting The Incredible Mammoth Cave National Park

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Abraham Lincoln Boyhood Home at Knob Creek

Over at his young boyhood home and memorial one will find fewer facilities. There are restrooms but they are closed to October for renovation. There are park brochures and local information.

  • Open: Grounds Are Open During Daylight Hours Year-Round
  • Note: The Boyhood Home Unit at Knob Creek will be closed from August 3, 2020, to October 9, 2021 (For Renovation)

There are also hiking trails located at both of the parts of the historical park. They vary in length from 0.3 miles to one-third of a mile at the Birthplace Unit. At the Boyhood Home Unit, there is a strenuous one-and-a-half-mile trail. On these trails, one can see some of the scenery and wildlife that surrounded Abraham Lincoln in his early formative years.

Next: The Appalachian Mountains Run Through Kentucky, And These Mountain Towns Are Calling To Us