Stanford was a big surprise. Driving into town, I saw a big Super Walmart, which tends to be the death knell for any sort of cool downtown area. But Stanford is an amazing little downtown. Perhaps you could chalk it up to it being the oldest Main Street in Kentucky (because it's on the old Wilderness Trail), or perhaps its due to the fact that there are tractors parallel parked across from the courthouse. Whatever it may be, there's only one word to really describe Stanford -it's charming. I sat on a park bench right in front of the courthouse and enjoyed a few minutes of the afternoon.
The courthouse pictured above is the fourth courthouse on this spot, built in 1909. Lincoln County is named after Revolutionary War hero Benjamin Lincoln, and is one of the original three Kentucky counties. According to materials from the Lincoln County tourism folks, the architecture is classical Beaux Arts influenced, and its archives are "a genealogy goldmine" as their records date back to 1780. These are the oldest records in the state.