Thursday, April 21, 2011

Home Sweet Home

Sometimes it's easy to focus on the historical aspect of a house like the Gardner House and to forget that many families called it home. Hart County Judge Terry Martin (right, below) and his brother Glen lived in the house as boys just a few decades ago.

WKU Folk Studies Graduate student Rachel Hopkin, joined by Hart County News editor Jerry Matera, recently interviewed the Martin brothers about their time in the house. This was the first time they'd been back to the house since 1970 and they were very interested to see all the restoration work that has been done.

The Martins showed Rachel where the added kitchen (now removed) had been situated and which upstairs bedroom they shared. They even laughed about falling down the steep, handrail-free staircase -- neither seems any the worse for wear, despite any possible tumbles.

To hear more about the history of this unique house, tune in to WKU Public Radio to hear Rachel's complete program, which will be airing in the last week in April. The program will also include:
  • how the Department of Folk Studies was honored with the task of restoring it;
  • how the Biology Department is involved;
  • first impressions from historic preservation craftsman Tonya Taylor, who coached students through restoration for two years; and 
  • the mysteries solved by archaeological detective work and archival research, or why the Gardner House might be going by the wrong name.

You can also come see the house in person, just like the Martin brothers did! We'd love to have you at our open house -- reserve your spot today by calling 941-626-0116 or byemailing

Photos by Jerry Matera

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Community Open House

Thanks for stopping by the Gardner Historic House blog! If you'd like to visit the actual house, now's your chance.

The Gardner House will be open to the public THIS SATURDAY, September 27, 2014 from 9:00am to 3:00pm. SEE YOU THERE! For more information, go to

We look forward to seeing you there!