Situated on more than 2,000 acres of farmland in Nelson County, Kentucky lies The Abbey of Our Lady of Gethsemani. Catholics recognize Gethsemani as the mother house of all Trappist and Trappistine monasteries in the United States. It's the oldest monastery still in use in this country.
Gethsemani's fame emerged when the monk Thomas Merton, an acclaimed author and poet, moved there to live out his life. Merton passed away on December 10, 1968 by accidental electrocution in Bangkok, Thailand, while attending a meeting of religious leaders. He is buried on the monastery grounds.
Today, the monks of Gethsemani support the monastery by producing Port Salut cheese, fruitcake, Kentucky Bourbon Fudge and through royalties received from sales of Thomas Mertons' books.