Derbies Diversity Sluggers Bourbon Food Historic Architecture and Parks
Louisville is centrally located along the Ohio River and is one America’s most accessible cities within a day’s drive of more than half the nation’s population.
History this city has a colorful past, from its frontier founding at the time of the American Revolution, to early 19th century steamboats and as a Union base during the Civil War. Named for King Louis XVI of France in appreciation for his assistance during the Revolutionary War, Louisville was founded by George Rogers Clark in 1778 becoming Kentucky’s largest city by 1830. Strategically located at the Falls of the Ohio, Louisville was a major commercial center with river transportation supplemented by the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, chartered in 1850 and operating 1,800 miles by 1920.
A City of Firsts Louisville was first in the nation to introduce the secret ballot and adopt zoning and planning measures to control and shape urban growth, the first bridge designed exclusively for motor vehicles to cross the Ohio River, and birthplace of Mary Millicent Miller, the first woman in the United States to receive a steamboat master’s license. Famous citizens include President Zachary Taylor, two U.S. Supreme Court Justices, naturalist John James Audubon and boxing legend Muhammad Ali.
Neighborhoods Louisville’s earliest neighborhoods were incorporated river towns each with its own strong sense of neighborhood identity. The area saw an influx of German and Irish immigrants and, with the advent of streetcars, suburban growth. 1890-1930 streetcars marked the era of the beginning of the city’s suburbs combining rural ambiance with urban amenities.
Historic Architecture and Parks the local landscape includes six tree-lined parkways, 18 parks and more than 30 miles of bike lanes. Louisville’s large landscaped parks are connected by tree-lined parkways, smaller parks, playgrounds, and squares; historic treasures and valuable community assets.
Bourbon and Food Louisville is home to over 2500 restaurants that blend traditional Kentucky cooking with International cuisine including French, Italian, and Mediterranean fare, Mexican and American Southwest influences, and classic Barbecue.
A Classic Bourbon Lounge for an Old Kentucky Experience
Diversity as a center of culture and transport, Louisville is a multicultural city with cosmopolitan roots stretching back centuries. From the African American experience that predates the history of the United States to the arrival of Asian and Jewish communities in the early Twentieth Century, to the most recent immigration of Hispanic and Latino communities, Louisville’s unique character continues to be remade by each influx of new people.
Arts and Culture diverse arts and culture communities make the city come alive with creative energy, new ideas, and talent. As a city built on America’s first frontier, Louisville is home to a proud tradition of artisanal crafts including glass and ceramic arts, wood and metal work, and decorative domestic crafting with an original Louisville twist as well as home to more than a dozen venues and performance companies and the music traditions of blues, bluegrass, and rock & roll.
Where the American South and Midwest Meet the World
The Kentucky Derby Museum on the front steps of historic Churchill Downs, captures the pride, tradition and excitement of the greatest two minutes in sports. Main Street Museum Row is ten original attractions within four blocks: Frazier History Museum, Glass works, Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, Kentucky Science Center, the Kentucky Museum of Art & Craft, 21c Museum Hotel, the Muhammad Ali Center and the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience. The Belle of Louisville is the oldest Mississippi-style steamboat still in operation in the world; this National Historic Landmark has three decks and can carry over 600 passengers.