Gardens to Gables

Seduction by Shakers: Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill

I am easily seduced by sense of place. I’m a Kentuckian (sixth generation of a family with chronically long generations ), so part of that may be genetic. Plus, I’m a nerd for history, and the tantalizing mixture of building, feature, landscape and memory with Read More

Cynthiana’s Handy House: The Complications of Preservation

I first visited the Handy House in Cynthiana, Kentucky, on a sunny and mild day in February 2005. It wasn’t, at first glance, a straightforward building. Like a frothy wedding cake, the house presented multiple layers of stories, people, and varying ideas of style and Read More

Lola (not the Ray Davies version)

Lola, Livingston County, Kentucky One of the significant historic aspects of Kentucky is its numerous crossroad communities and hamlets, located scant miles apart along a county’s road or waterway networks. This collection of buildings, surrounded by farmland, may indeed be located at the juncture of Read More

Dragons & winged lions – the Holborn Viaduct

The Inns of Court in London have long fascinated me, and though their history, ritual, and shadowy recesses reveal something new every time I am in London – sometimes what catches my eye is much more pedestrian – and is simply there, along my route. Read More

Awakening and Building: A look at the Progressive Era and Architecture (Part 1)

Election season in Kentucky…barbs, innuendos and bluster hang as heavy in the air as does pollen during the spring and fall. And like the pollen, all of the posturing makes me want to sneeze repeatedly to clear my head and stop the onslaught of buzzwords. Read More

Sentinels of Memory: Kentucky’s Tobacco Barns

I am child of frame tobacco barns, heavily laden with burley tobacco, dust and dry bits of leaves dancing together in the air. These barns, with their straightforward appearance, clad in vertical boards, spread out across the farms of my childhood. Located on hills, to Read More

Kentucky Country Stores

When I began researching my thesis (ages ago), which focused on two antebellum farms and their landscape, I realized that my Kentucky was a state with many souls, and personalities. Her landscape, I discovered, was one of “enormous geographic contradictions.” These disparate elements, from east Read More

Layers of History at the Tower of London

Popular culture teems with the notion that all young girls love horses. It makes for a good book and/or movie, I suppose – but I didn’t quite fit into that demographic. Granted, I liked horses, but since my daily chores involved cleaning out stalls, and Read More

Emperors, walls and money

There are no Roman emperors in Kentucky, even if we must endure politicians who act like ancient despots (or just idiots). We can, however, claim miles of beautiful drylaid stone fences and walls. Scots-Irish stone masons immigrating to the Americas brought their craft for drylaid Read More

Bus Collisions and Discoveries on the Interwebs

One of my favorite stories from my time spent in London during college was the day I was almost hit by a bus. Not that I relish the adrenaline rush of narrowly avoiding death from such an ignoble source, but that it was me hitting Read More