- Butchertown, Louisville
Butchertown is a neighborhood just east of downtown
Louisville, Kentucky, USA. The first homes in the area were laid out in the 1820s along the newly completed Louisville to Lexington turnpike, referred to in that stretch as Story Avenue.
One of the first landowners in the area, Whig Party loyalist George Buchanan, had the new community's streets named after major Whig Party members, such as
John Quincy Adams, Daniel Websterand Henry Clay. In the 1850s Beargrass Creek was rerouted away from what is now downtown Louisville and through the area, making it an ideal area for butchers and stockyards because the animal remains could be dumped in the creek and such businesses were banned in the downtown area for sanitation reasons. The population swelled as waves of German immigrants entered the area. Bourbon Stockyards, built in 1836, was the first stockyard to locate in Butchertown — currently, parts of the original building house a bank. Due to the high German population, and resentment of them by supporters of the Know Nothingparty, Butchertown was where the " Bloody Monday" riots of August 1855 began as Know Nothings tried to prevent Germans and Irish from voting in an election. The riots killed 22 people.
For the first 100 years of its existence, Butchertown was a thriving residential and industrial area, though other Louisville neighborhoods regarded it as a haven for drunkards and brawlers. However, the area began declining after the great
Ohio River flood of 1937destroyed many of the homes there. Many other homes were demolished for the construction of the Ohio River flood wall, the construction of interstates and the Kennedy Interchangethrough the area, and the expansion of industrial land into formerly residential areas. Suburbanizationcontinued to bring the residential areas into decline, until the few remaining residents began lobbying for rezoning (the entire area was zoned as industrial), and fixing up vacant and underrepaired houses.
Since the 1990s the area has attracted many young professionals. In recent years, the east Market Street area of downtown Louisville has seen a great deal of revitalization, including the expansion of Waterfront Park,
Louisville Slugger Field, and the conversion of empty store fronts into new condominiums. This has helped spur further improvements in Butchertown itself, as many new antique shops and art galleries have opened off the Market Street corridor. Currently, a large condominium complex is planned near the Heigold house, and the former Big Four railroad bridge in the adjacent waterfront park is in the process of being converted into the longest pedestrian only bridge in the world. However, there are also plans as part of the Ohio River Bridges Projectto move the Kennedy Interchangefurther south when it is reconfigured sometime around 2018, meaning that more buildings will likely be razed. Butchertown contains several attractions, including the Louisville Extreme Parkand Thomas Edison House, a shotgun housenear where Thomas Edisonlived in 1866 on Washington Street. The remaining front facet of the former early 19th century Heigold house, which features a detailed sketch of important early Whig Party leaders, displays the words "dedicated the greatest man in history, George Washington" etched across its front. The rest of the Fulton Street house has been razed.
As of 2000, the population of Butchertown was 975 ref|1, of which Whites are 77.8%, Blacks are 15.2%, Hispanics are 2.3, and other races are 4.7%. Males of all races are 60.1% of the population, females are 39.9%. College graduates are 23.6, people having not graduated from high school are 28.8%.
History of the Germans in Louisville
# cite web|title=Community Resource Network|url=http://www.crndata.org/Neighborhoods/WEB%AD_NIGHBORHOODS/Butchertown.htm|accessdate=2005-11-18
* [http://www.ecentral.com/louisvillemaps/butchertown.gifStreet map of Butchertown]
* [http://www.courier-journal.com/reweb/community/placetime/eastend-butchertown.html Places in Time: Butchertown]
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