Old Governor’s Mansion

Frankfort, Kentucky

Client: Commonwealth of Kentucky

Scope of Services: Condition Assessment; Abbreviated Historic Structure Report; Interior/Exterior Rehabilitation; Addition

The third residence for a governor built in the United States and the first west of the Alleghenies, the 1797 Governor’s Mansion of Kentucky now plays a dual role. The first level of the house is open to the public daily as a state museum, though it sometimes serves as a state reception area; the first level of the attached kitchen building serves as the complex’s kitchen with state staffing. The second level of house is the private residence of the Lieutenant Governor’s family; the second level of the kitchen building is the office for the Lieutenant Governor’s staff.

The mansion had been extensively modified in the late-nineteenth century with doors and windows elongated, porches added, trim replaced, all to match Victorian taste. In the 1960s the house was again remodeled using Williamsburg as the model for trim and style, though the Victorian size of doors and windows remained the same. JKOA conducted building archaeology to gather evidence of the original design, restored the fenestration, and rehabilitated the building for its modern uses. Part of the rehabilitation included removing the modern connector between mansion and kitchen building and redesigning a replacement more compatible with the character of the original mansion and kitchen building.

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