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Did You Know: Octagon Hall

(Franklin, KY) Did you know that Octagon Hall in Franklin, Kentucky is not only a stunning example of unique architecture, but also a significant piece of history?


Octagon Hall is in the same city as the Senior Perspectives program at the Medical Center at Franklin. Built in 1859 by a wealthy planter named John B. Timberlake, Octagon Hall was designed as a family home and a place to showcase his wealth and status. The octagonal shape of the house was an unusual choice at the time and served both an aesthetic and practical purpose. Not only did it allow for better air circulation and natural lighting, but it also gave the home a distinctive and impressive appearance.


However, Octagon Hall's history is not just about its architecture. During the Civil War, the house played an important role as a Confederate hospital and safe haven for soldiers. Timberlake's daughter, Mary Elizabeth, was known for her dedication to caring for wounded soldiers and even took on the nickname "The Angel of Octagon Hall." It is said that her ghost still haunts the house to this day.


In addition to its role in the Civil War, Octagon Hall has also been the site of other significant historical events. In 1868, it was used as a Freedman's Bureau school for African American children. Later, in the early 1900s, it served as a home for orphaned children.


Today, Octagon Hall is a museum and a popular destination for history buffs and architecture enthusiasts alike. Visitors can explore the house and its grounds, learn about its rich history, and even attend events like Civil War reenactments and ghost tours.




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