My Old Kentucky Home State Park To Accept Portrait of Historic Resident Judge John Rowan

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (June 29, 2023) – My Old Kentucky Home (MOKH) State Park will formally accept a portrait of Judge John Rowan, who was an original inhabitant of the home. Thomas James III, M.D., a direct descendant of Judge Rowan, is donating the painting.

The portrait of Judge John Rowan (1773-1843), painted in oils by notable Kentucky artist Matthew Harris Jouett (1788-1827), was painted in 1825 and shows a mature statesman looking at the viewer, reading glasses perched on his forehead. The family has previously made several other significant donations of Rowan-related items to the park in recognition of their history at the home.

The Federal Hill mansion was completed in 1818 and served as home for the Rowan family for three generations. The state purchased the property in 1922 through a combination of public and private funds. Renamed “My Old Kentucky Home,” the property opened to the public as a state historic site on July 4, 1923, and became a Kentucky state park in 1936.

The portrait donation will take place July 1 at 5 p.m. EDT during the MOKH’s Home Coming event, a celebration of the 100-year anniversary of the park. Presented in conjunction with the Bardstown Nelson Chamber of Commerce, this event will feature kids activities, food trucks, live music, fireworks and more.

Visitors can enhance their experience by attending The Stephen Foster Story at 8 p.m., with premium seating in the outdoor amphitheater, exclusive amenities and an unparalleled view of the stage. Theatergoers will have ideal seats for the fireworks display following the performance. Tickets can be purchased at

My Old Kentucky Home is located at 501 East Stephen Foster Ave. in Bardstown, Kentucky, and is open 9 a.m.-5 p.m., seven days a week. Tours are given every hour on the hour from 9 a.m. until the last tour of the day at 4 p.m.

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Kentucky is home to 44 state parks, including 17 resort parks and 13 golf courses. For more information about Kentucky State Parks, visit