Daniel Boone Home
In July 2009 I visited the Daniel Boone home near Defiance, Missouri. It's not too far from the famous explorer's gravesite (unless you reside in the Bluegrass state!). The house sits near a wooded hillside with many elm trees around it. There's free parking just outside the exhibits.
After a long day of traveling and sightseeing I was pretty hungry and thirsty. Fortunately for me the Boy Scouts were selling lunch outside the ticket sales and souvenir building. I got a hot dog, chips, baked beans, cookie, and a drink for less than $5. What a deal! Some of the actors were mingling about and answering questions. I went inside to buy my tickets and look around inside the souvenir store. The credit card sales machine wasn't operating so it was cash only. Several people were pretty rude to the clerk about it.
I bought my tickets and waited for my tour time. My group met behind the souvenir building and waited very briefly for our guide. The very well spoken young man was extremely polite and extremely knowledgeable. He gave a great Daniel Boone history lesson prior to explaining the ground rules and we began. We first made our way to the Judgement Tree where Daniel Boone held court and made legal decisions. The large tree has fallen over and not much is left of it.
We then went up to the house. We went to what I, and everyone else, thought was the front. It was the rear. We stood where horses and carriages would pull up to deliver guests and waited for the previous tour to exit. It's a four story Georgian style house with 30" thick limestone walls! There are rifle ports on each side of the lower story windows. We made our way inside. It was rustic on the interior and sparsely furnished by today's standards. Some of the furniture inside belonged to the Boone family. There were a couple of oil paintings of Daniel Boone that were originals. The ceiling beams and woodwork are black walnut. Daniel Boone carved the five fireplaces. You can enter the small bedroom where Daniel Boone died on September 26, 1820 at the age of 86. You can't enter the top floor rooms due to fire code regulations. We had to exit out onto the porches and go down the stairs to get to lowest level. It's partially underground and contained the kitchen, food storage areas, and eating area. A large wood stove supplied heat and a cooking fire. Several items on this level are passed around to be examined.
In addition to the Boone home there is a 1800's village complete with residents. The 1800's residents interact with you as if you were back in their era. There are quite a few buildings and most of them can be entered. Many of the residents are performing manual labor tasks and provide a friendly history lesson. On the day I visited there was a late 1800's baseball game. Both residents and tourists competed.
I went back to the souvenir shop and looked around. It contained a wide variety of items and price ranges. Obviously Boone items and Boone era items dominated. There were also US Civil War, Missouri history, farming, and Indian items available. There were some very nice Daniel Boone DVD's I picked up in addition to several other items. Most of the prices were very reasonable.
The Boone Home and 1800's village tickets were sold separately. Prices were reasonable and there were quite a few people visiting. The staff kept the tour groups down to about a dozen people which was great. It allowed you to move about inside the buildings and have time to ask questions of the guide and interact. You don't have to have a guide inside the village, just the Boone Home. No photography was allowed inside the Boone Home.
The Boone Home and property have been placed on the National Register Of Historic Places by the United States Department Of The Interior.