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About Us

Here's a brief history of Fairfield Farms and a little about the owners. If you need more information, feel free to contact us at your convenience. And, make sure to check out our gallery of photos from our property and the surrounding area.

About the Cottage...

Our stone cottage sits along the a buffalo trail, named Alanant-o-Wamiowee by the Shawnee, created by bison centuries before the arrival of Native Americans. It is the site of Martin's Station, named after the intrepid explorer John Martin who lived on the land in 1775. Five years later, Martin's Station was the site of the second-to-last battle of the American Revolutionary War in 1780.

In 1783, James Garrard arrived in Kentucky and settled along Stoner Creek at this site he named "Fairfield". Sometime between 1783 and 1785, he built the stone house at which was held, in 1785, the very first court meeting of the newly created Bourbon County, Virginia. Kentucky gained statehood in 1792, and James Garrard was elected governor in 1796. While his father was occupied with the business of building a new state, James Garrard, Jr. took over the agricultural responsibilities of Mount Lebanon and Fairfield and lived in the original stone house until his death in 1838.
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Image may be subject to copyright

And the Farm

Our great-grandfather Col. Ezekiel F. Clay bought Fairfield in 1867 when he returned to Kentucky after the Civil War. He set about breeding prized cattle and racehorses. He named his farm Runnymede and partnered with his brother-in-law, Col. Catesby Woodford of Raceland Farm, to breed champion racehorses.

In 1924, our grandmother and her brother inherited Runnymede. They split the farm, and she received the original Fairfield acreage. The Fairfield stone house burned in 1951. Part of the stone was used to build a four-room house on the bank of Stoner Creek directly in front of the site of the original structure that is now the Fairfield Farm Cottage. The remainder was used as facing for the Anne Duncan House at Duncan Tavern in Paris.

Now that is a lot of history, but History is what you experience when you stay with us at the Fairfield Farm Cottage.

Meet the Owner

Mary McClinton Clay is a real estate appraiser specializing in environmental damage studies, in addition to being a farmer. She loves Kentucky history and collecting southern antiques.

Her first job after college was working in Kentucky as one of the first two field researchers for the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts. She enjoys sharing her farm and knowledge of the area with her guests.

In addition to the cattle and calves, other animals that live on the farm include two English Setters, a Lab, two horses and a donkey named Bob.