Gower House

Gower House
Water Street
Smithland, Ky 42081

Some believe it to have been built in 1780, by John Bell. He sold it to Stanley P. Gower in 1836.
Slaves made the brick to build the two story building. It was built with hand hewn timbers and has
15" thick walls. It contains 14 rooms and 13 fireplaces with only half of the building remaining
after a fire in 1857 destroyed a part of it. It was used as an Inn, also as a meeting place for The
Louisville Conference of the Methodist Church with over 100 ministers in attandence at this
Conference in 1857. The Masonic Lodge received their Charter and held their meetings at Gower
House. It was also used for court proceedings between 1842 and 1844. It is reputed to have been used
as a part of the underground railway to hide runaway slaves until they could escape to free states.
Many noteable people have been associated with Gower House, among them Andrew Jackson,
Henry Clay, Ned Buntline, Clara Barton and many, many others. It has even been said by some
that on a warm summer's night while passing the Gower House that they thought they could hear
the beautiful voice of Jenny Lind once again gracing the old inn with one of her sweet songs.

Much of the history of Gower House can be found in the book Echoes of Yesteryear by Leslie McDonald.

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Gower House
On the National Register of Historic Places