How large is Paducah? It is large enough to have a “downtown”, a Lower Town”, a “mid-town”, a “South side”, a “West end”, and a “Fountain Avenue area”. I’m surprised someone hasn’t identified an “out of town” area. Maybe they have, and called it the “county”.
Exploring the city as I have been doing over the past few months has given me a greater appreciation of Paducah and its many neighborhoods. Individually, and collectively, they convey a sense of intimacy that has deep roots in the city’s history. This is evident by the grouping of houses and the shells of what were once thriving neighborhood stores and shops.
It has occurred to me that Paducah could appropriately be called the “city of homes”. They are present everywhere, in well defined neighborhoods or scattered willy-nilly along the streets and highways. Reflecting their owners, they may be large, elegant, and imposing, proudly showing “their stuff”. Or their elegance is quiet and simple, with no need to stand out and demand attention. Then there are the houses that find out of the way places to avoid curious eyes, they don’t need attention, and they don’t want attention. Some of these houses are small, even humble, and hide as if embarrassed by their plight. But occasionally they are anything but small and humble, like the house below.
This Victorian classic is well hidden, less than a block off of one of Paducah’s busy streets in the Mid-town area. It took me over 10 years to notice it after driving by countless times.
|Quick sketch - Lower Town home|
The challenge ? What to include in the portfolio and what to leave out.