Right in the heart of Danville you will find Constitution Square, where the movement to make Kentucky the fifteenth state in the Union began. More than 200 years after Isaac Shelby was named the first governor of the Bluegrass at the same location, visitors from across the country still come to Danville to feel the history of the Square.
Constitution Square can be a jumping-off point for several other historical attractions in the region. Across the street is historic McDowell House, site of the first successful abdominal surgery in medical history. The home is painstakingly restored and offers a terrific tour.
Next, take a quick, 10-mile trip west of Danville, and you’ll arrive at the Perryville Battlefield State Historic Site, the location of one of the Civil War's most notable battles. Described as one of the most unaltered Civil War battle sites in the nation, enjoy the beautiful vistas of the sweeping battlefield and check out the newly renovated gift shop and museum.
Another Boyle County treasure is Penn’s Store, a must-see for any history lover. Located in Gravel Switch, Penn's Store is the oldest country store in America run by thesame family since 1850. Penn’s Store is currently recovering from the recent flooding, but hopes to continue its celebrations soon.
You can’t miss out on a trip to Forkland, either. In scenic West Boyle County, you’ll find the Forkland Abraham Lincoln and Community Center Museum. For any fan of our 16th president, this attraction is something you have to see!
Looking for a taste of Hollywood history in the Bluegrass? Turn your attention to Pioneer Playhouse in Danville. Now celebrating its 61th birthday, the Playhouse is still going strong, offering plays throughout the entire summer. Pioneer Playhouse helped launch some of the biggest names in the business, including John Travolta, who spent a summer acting at the Playhouse beforedancing into fame in the hit film “Saturday Night Fever”! And stop by the historic Old Crow Inn right next door and enjoy some fantastic wines from our local winery.
The region surrounding Danville/Boyle County is home to several sites of historical interest as well. Locations such Ft. Harrod State Park in our neighboring town of Harrodsburg and Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, also in Mercer County, continue to draw thousands of history buffs year after year. Thank you for taking a moment to read about what Danville/Boyle County has to offer your historical interests. We hope to see you soon in Danville/Boyle County so that we may help you discover why “It’s better here…”