National Register Listings in
Grant County, Kentucky

During the Civil War, Kentucky was officially neutral, but the state was divided in its loyalties, with many citizens fighting on both sides of the conflict.
Grant County, located in northern Kentucky, has a rich history dating back to its formation in 1820. The area that would become Grant County was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Shawnee and Cherokee. European settlers began arriving in the late 18th century, attracted by the fertile farmland and abundance of game.

The county was named after Colonel John Grant, a prominent lawyer and politician at the time. Grant County saw its first significant growth with the completion of the Cincinnati Southern Railroad in 1877, which connected the region to the bustling city of Cincinnati and sparked economic development. This led to the establishment of several rail stations and the growth of small towns along the railroad route, including Williamstown and Crittenden.

During the Civil War, Grant County experienced both Union and Confederate presence, as it was located on a major transportation route between Kentucky and the South. The Battle of Williamstown took place in 1864, where Union forces successfully repelled a Confederate raid. The war had a profound impact on the county, with many local men joining the Union Army to fight for their beliefs.

In the 20th century, Grant County continued to evolve and modernize. The construction of interstate highways improved transportation access, bringing more industries and businesses to the area. Today, Grant County is known for its vibrant agriculture and tourism industries, thanks to the presence of attractions like the Ark Encounter, a life-sized replica of Noah's Ark, which draws visitors from all over the world. Grant County's history, from its early settlement to its thriving present, is a testament to the strength and resilience of its community.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Grant County, Kentucky.

  • 1792: Grant County is established as a county in the state of Kentucky.
  • 1812: The first courthouse in Grant County is built in Williamstown.
  • 1820s-1850s: Grant County experiences growth due to the construction of the Lexington-Covington turnpike.
  • 1862-1865: Grant County residents participate in the American Civil War, with the county divided in its loyalties.
  • 1886: The Cincinnati Southern Railway extends its line through Grant County, bringing economic opportunities.
  • 1906: The Williamstown Lake is created to provide water supply for the growing city of Williamstown.
  • 1923: Grant County experiences a significant population growth due to the discovery of oil and gas.
  • 1967: Interstate 75 is completed through Grant County, improving transportation connectivity.
  • 1997: The Ark Encounter, a full-scale replica of Noah's Ark, opens in Williamstown, attracting visitors from around the world.