A national event connected to Washington that occurred in 1833 did not manifest itself until the 1850s. That year Harriet Beecher visited her student Elizabeth Marshall Key at the Marshall Key home in Washington. The home was just a few doors away from the courthouse lawn, where slave auctions were held. Tradition holds that the sights Beecher witnessed on this visit, perhaps along with others, inspired some of the characters and scenes in Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852). The slave auction portrayed in Beecher’s chapter “Select Incident of Lawful Trade” mentions Washington and a slave auction before the “Court-house door.” (Quoted from pages 935-936 of THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF NORTHERN KENTUCKY THE UNIVERSITY PRESS OF KENTUCKY ISBN 978-0-8131-2565-7)

PDF version

Legend of graphics

3D Model

2020 Kentucky Heritage Council report

Marshall Key House’s Preservation and Conservation easement


Additional references

History of the Marshall Key House Interpretive Plan