horizontal banner with Preserve America logo and images of a historic downtown, farm, courthouse, and mountain

Preserve America is a national initiative in cooperation with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; the U.S. Departments of Defense, Interior, Agriculture, Commerce, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, and Education; the National Endowment for the Humanities; the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities; and the President's Council on Environmental Quality.

Preserve America Neighborhood:
Bell Court - Lexington, Kentucky

The Bell Court neighborhood is one of Lexington’s significant early 20th century neighborhoods. It developed around the historic Bell House, designed by famed Lexington architect Thomas Lewinski, which combines elements of the Greek Revival and Romanesque styles. The house was purchased by the City of Lexington in 1940 and is now part of a public city park.

When first developed, the location of this beautiful residential area was pivotal, because it allowed residents to walk to their jobs downtown prior to the wide availability of automobiles. Most of the homes in the district reflect the Victorian and Queen Anne styles that were popular around the turn of the 20th century, and there are also many Arts and Crafts style houses that dot the development.

The Bell Court Neighborhood Association has been in existence in one form or another since 1962 and has a long history of volunteer efforts to revitalize this downtown historic neighborhood. Each year, the Bell Court Porch Party is held to raise funds for neighborhood projects.

Current major projects of the Neighborhood Association include publication of a neighborhood cookbook, traffic calming installations, and implementation of a landscape master plan for the park surrounding Bell House. Development of the plan represents a partnership between the Association and Lexington’s Park and Recreation Planning Department.

Listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1982, Bell Court is a featured historic neighborhood stop on the National Register of Historic Places travel itinerary, “Lexington, Kentucky: The Athens of the West.”

For more information

Bell Court Neighborhood Association: bellcourt.wordpress.com

Bell Court National Register Travel Itinerary Description: www.cr.nps.gov/nr/travel/lexington/bel.htm#essays

National Register Travel Itinerary: www.cr.nps.gov/nr/travel/lexington

Posted August 16, 2011

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