Why There’s a Goat on Top of an Old Western KY Lodge Hall
My penchant for taking drives through the countryside knows no bounds, and one of my favorite parts of western Kentucky in which to drive THROUGH is Dundee, Kentucky. This is one of those "if you know, you know" situations.
QUIRKY KENTUCKY ATTRACTIONS
Because if you KNOW about the unusual landmark in Dundee, then you KNOW why this unincorporated town is part of my route. And I really love showing the landmark off to people for the first time.
When they've seen the goat atop the old white building, the reactions haven't varied too much. It's either, "that's creepy" or "that's cool." And sometimes, I get a "that's creepy but cool." I'm in the latter camp.
THE GOAT OF DUNDEE
It's always a lot of fun to take advantage of a beautiful day and drive up (or down) Kentucky State Road 69 between Fordsville and Hartford and tell my passengers, "Check out the goat." When I inevitably get a "Where" in response, I tell them, "Well, up on top of that church, of course." No, I know it's not a church, but it certainly looks like one to those who've never seen it. It's actually the Dundee Masonic Lodge No. 733 and it will be there for as long as it can withstand the elements and comes down on its own, which I hope is never.
Structures on the National Register of Historic Places have a lifetime guarantee, and this lodge has been "guaranteed" since 1901.
But why a goat? Also (and here's a question I bet you didn't think you needed to ask), why is this community called Dundee, which is also the name of a large city in Scotland?
WHY THERE'S A GOAT ATOP A LODGE HALL
Well, learning about the goat led me to the story behind the town's name. and, believe me, learning about the goat wasn't easy. There are very few precise accounts online, but I found a couple. Preservation Kentucky's Facebook page is one, and it informs us that the "Dundee goat" is the only surviving weathervane (of three) that came from Dundee, Scotland in the 1890s. It's hollow, made of zinc, and weighs about 10 pounds.
What I found most interesting is that Dundee isn't even the town's original name. That would be Hines Mill. But according to the Ohio County Historical Society, the name was changed to Dundee BECAUSE the goat weathervane came from the Dundee in Scotland.
How very "which came first, the chicken or the egg."
It adds so much character to a quick, last-minute, afternoon getaway and is even BETTER when you have someone with you who's never seen it before.
So if you're driving down 69 in Ohio County and you get to Dundee, DO look up...if you're not driving.