Portrait of Samuel Oldham Churchill



Portrait of Samuel Oldham Churchill


Samuel Churchill moved from Virginia to Kentucky when he was eight years old. He owned 415 acres of land along Beargrass Creek. The Churchills enslaved thirty-six individuals whose labor created economic advantage and comfort for the family. He had an interest in horse breeding and was president of the Louisville Association for the Improvement of Breed of Horses. Samuel Churchill was one of seven founding trustees of the Oakland Racecourse in Louisville in early 1832, which was located on fifty-one acres of land purchased from Samuel and Abigail Churchill, as well as from other landholders. His sons, John and Henry, inherited land from Samuel, which they leased to his nephew Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr., founder of a new racecourse known today as Churchill Downs.


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Campbell, Thomas, “Portrait of Samuel Oldham Churchill,” The Filson Historical Society Digital Projects, accessed June 5, 2023, https://filsonhistorical.omeka.net/items/show/5810.