JACOBS HALL MUSEUM:
A beloved historic landmark at Kentucky School for the Deaf
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Unfortunately, we did not have enough interest in the tour to Jacobs Hall Museum to make it possible for us to reserve a bus, so the tour is cancelled. If you have reserved a spot on the bus, you will be contacted individually about refund of your ticket.
Jacobs Hall was continuously, from 1857 until 1962, the residence for female deaf students enrolled at the first state residential school for the Deaf in Danville, founded in 1823. The Museum has been open since 2007. Many of the rooms have been restored to their nineteenth century look and several are furnished as they were in the late 1800’s – dormitory rooms, superintendent’s quarters with two parlors, dining room, study, The furnishings are late Victorian, many donated by the family of John Jacobs (teacher and superintendent from 1826-1869) and his daughter and son-in-law, Ann and Samuel B. Cheek. This tour will include an hour bus ride from your hotel to Danville and back to your hotel. A light meal will be provided. (A minimum 30 with maximum of 55 people can participate in this tour)
Kentucky Educational Television and the American Institute of Architects named Jacobs Hall, which is located on the Kentucky School for the Deaf campus, one of the “10 Best Kentucky Buildings.”
ABOUT JACOBS HALL MUSEUM
Jacobs Hall was designed by Thomas Lewinski – who designed Ashland and White Hall, which are the homes of Henry and Cassius Marcellus Clay – and was built by John McMurtry in 1857. The building originally served as a girls’ dormitory for KSD. The school’s superintendent lived on part of the first and second floors, with other staff residing on the third and fourth floors. Female students (27 per floor) lived in their own quarters in the building, with separate entrances on all four floors.
The building’s eye-catching, six-story open foyer was not designed, as is commonly thought, to allow sign language communication among the different floors, but was actually a ventilation system. With the two-story octagonal glass cupola open, the foyer drew warm air up and out of the building, keeping it cool in the summer months.
The building’s distinguished past and rich architectural character earned it the designation as a National Historic Landmark in 1967. Kentucky School for the Deaf superintendents resided within its walls until 2002, when it became a museum. As one of the most handsome remaining buildings from the first school for the deaf west of the Alleghenies, Jacobs Hall stands as a distinctive reminder of Danville’s and Boyle County’s long tradition of progress and innovation.
For more information about Jacobs Hall, visit www.ksd.k12.ky.us.
OTHER FACTS ABOUT JACOBS HALL
- Jacobs Hall’s foundation was constructed from hand-cut field stones.
- Every single one of its bricks was handmade and fired on site.
- Its ceilings get progressively shorter on the higher floors of the building.