National Register Listings in
Crittenden County, Kentucky

Available on Amazon
Kentucky is home to Mammoth Cave National Park, the world's longest known cave system with over 400 miles of explored passages.
Crittenden County, Kentucky, located in the western part of the state, has a rich history dating back to its establishment in 1842. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Chickasaw and Shawnee nations. European settlement began in the late 18th century, with early pioneers attracted to the fertile lands along the Ohio and Tradewater Rivers.

The county was named after John J. Crittenden, a prominent statesman from Kentucky who served as both Attorney General and Secretary of State under different U.S. presidents. It was officially established in 1842, carved out of neighboring Livingston County. Agriculture, particularly tobacco farming, played a significant role in the county's early economy.

During the Civil War, Crittenden County was a strategic location due to its proximity to the Ohio River and its abundant agricultural resources. The area was heavily divided, with some residents supporting the Union and others sympathetic to the Confederacy. The county experienced numerous skirmishes and raids throughout the war, causing significant disruptions and challenges for its inhabitants.

In the years following the Civil War, Crittenden County faced economic struggles as agriculture prices fluctuated and infrastructure development lagged behind neighboring regions. However, in the 20th century, the construction of dams along the Ohio River brought about economic growth, providing hydroelectric power and attracting industry to the area. Today, Crittenden County continues to be a rural community with a focus on agriculture, while also embracing tourism and outdoor recreational activities along the river.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Crittenden County, Kentucky.

  • 1825: Crittenden County is officially established.
  • 1830: The county is named after John J. Crittenden, a senator from Kentucky.
  • 1843: The county seat is established in Marion, Kentucky.
  • 1850s: Coal mining becomes an important industry in Crittenden County.
  • 1861-1865: Crittenden County residents serve in the Civil War.
  • 1873: The Ohio River flood devastates the county.
  • 1936: The Smithland Lock and Dam is completed on the Ohio River.
  • 1966: The Kincaid State Fish and Wildlife Area is established.
  • 1973: Crittenden County Historical Society is founded.
  • 1982: The 10,000-acre Crittenden County State Natural Area is established.