• Our Blog

Step Back in Time at “My Old Kentucky Home”

My Old Kentucky Home, historic attractions in Bardstown, KentuckyWhen visiting historic Bardstown be sure to include a tour of My Old Kentucky Home. A 200 year old, fully restored mansion named to honor the iconic song, “My Old Kentucky Home.” History enthusiasts and neophytes alike will enjoy this journey back in time while touring the 1812 mansion and plantation. Your stay at Bourbon Manor Bed and Breakfast Inn will enhance your travels through history. Our centrally-located property includes two Pre-Civil War homes with luxurious guest rooms. Each room has its own charm with antiques and period inspired furnishings but include all the modern comforts. Book an escape to beautiful Bardstown and experience the finest in Southern hospitality at the Manor.

The History of “My Old Kentucky Home”

The property’s rich history comes to life while touring the beautiful Federal Style mansion. Talented tour guides, dressed in period clothing, tell the fascinating story of the Rowan family. Discover the the history of this celebrated home.

John Rowan Sr and Ann Lyle established the homestead in 1798. It began as a 325 acre farm with only a log home. Stephen Foster Story in Bardstown, KentuckyThe couple later had a single story, brick home built and named their property “Federal Hill.” In 1812 planning began to build a larger, three story Federal style mansion. In 1818 they completed the home and the property grew to 1,300 acres. Over the next few decades fatal illnesses and a devastating fire brought tragedy to the home. However the Rowan family endured and thrived.

In 1853 Stephen Foster composed the home’s namesake song “My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night”. The song was inspired by the abolitionist novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe.  Then in 1923 “Federal Hill” became Kentucky’s first state park and was renamed “My Old Kentucky Home.” Just a few years later in 1928 it became the state song of Kentucky.

Tours of “My Old Kentucky Home”

Learn details of life in the mansion from the knowledgeable tour guides. Explore the antique-filled rooms and walls covered with fine paintings and portraits. Hear colorful stories about a gentlemen’s duel and the family’s noble bloodline of race horses. The house and grounds are open for tours Wednesday through Sunday from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. Spend the day captivated by the fascinating past of Kentucky.

There are also fun specialty tours for groups of 10 or more:

  • Culinary Biscuit Tour – Your guide creates delicious southern beaten biscuits in the charming carriage house. Guests will make their very own ham biscuits using My Kentucky mint julepOld Kentucky Home’s smokehouse ham.
  • Mint Julep Tour – Sip this classic, southern drink, after touring the mansion and grounds.
  • Lemonade Tour – Work up a thirst touring the great house and property, then settle in for a lemonade picnic in the gardens.
  • Hot Apple Cider Tour – Learn about famous house guests while admiring the paintings and fine antiques. Then warm up with some hot apple cider and ginger snap cookies served in the historic kitchen.

After your excursion to Kentucky’s past return to our relaxing Bed and Breakfast. Stroll our lovely gardens and admire our Federal and Greek Revival style guest houses. Savor our award-winning gourmet breakfasts after a perfect night’s sleep. Plan your getaway to our warm and welcoming inn and let us pamper you.

Scroll to Top

Concerned about COVID-19 and travel?