Visiting Louisville

Today was our visiting day for Louisville. Our original plans were to go to the Speed Art Museum and the Frazier History Museum. Those didn’t happen—the Speed Museum turns out to be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, and Erin was not interested in the Frazier.

So what did we end up doing? We started out by going to the gravesite of Zachary Taylor, 12th President of the US, which is in the Zachary Taylor National Cemetary. After that we had lunch over in Bardstown at the Twig and Leaf, an old greasy spoon, followed by ice cream at Graters. After that, we walked off lunch by exploring Bardstown for a bit.

Next up was Farmington Plantation, the home of Joshua Speed, a good friend of Abraham Lincoln. This was a very good plantation house tour, with lots of original and period artifacts. After that it started to rain heavily, but we did drive over and see Zachary Taylor’s home, as well as driving around Locust Grove, which was the last home of George Rogers Clark.

Dinner was at Lynn’s Paradise Cafe, which cemented the fact that Louisville is the Austin of the Mid-West (i.e., a hipster’s paradise, down to the “Keep Louisville Weird” slogan). It was a mixed dinner: my sandwich was great, but Erin’s ham steak was dry and oversalty. The sides were excellent.

As for the Bellarmine question of yesterday: We’re beginning to conclude that it’s not the place for Erin: the set of American History courses is too small, the 4-year retention rate is a red-flag, and the comments from students raise red-flags regarding how comfortable non-midwesterners might be. So far, Tulane is at the tops for this trip, although the west coast choices may get much more serious consideration.

Tomorrow it is off to St. Louis. I’m looking forward to this: I’ll get to see some family and friends who I don’t see often enough. Erin will get to visit Washington University and assess their history department and campus. We already have appointments to meet with both faculty and students.