National Register Listings in
Washington County, Kentucky

Barber, John R., House Beech Fork Bridge, Mackville Road Beechfork Presbyterian Church Berry, Richard, Jr., House Blackwell, William, House Brown, Stephen Cooke, House Caldwell, William, Kitchen Cartwright Creek Bridge Clements House Cocanougher House Conner, George, House Covington Institute Teachers' Residence Cusick, Ed, House Doe Run Trestle Duncan House Edelen House Elmwood Farmer's Bank of Mackville Fields' House Glenn Cottage Tract Gregory-Barlow Place Grundy Houses Hamilton Farm Hamilton, Thomas H., House Hatchett Tobacco Barn Holy Rosary Church Johnson's Chapel AME Church Kalarama Saddlebred Horse Farm Kendrick-Croake House Kendrick-Tucker-Barber House Lincoln, Mordecai, House Litsey, John, House Long Lick Creek Bridge Lyddan, Pat, House Mackville Historic District Maple Grove Mayes, Archibald Scott, House McChord, William C., House McElroy, T. I., House McElroy, Wilson, House Mount Zion Covered Bridge Parrot House Pile, Benjamin, House Pope, John, House Ray-Wakefield House Road Run School Round Stone Smokehouse Simms-Edelen House Simms-Mattingly House Simmstown Smith, Levi J., House Springfield Armory Springfield Baptist Church Springfield Graded School Springfield Historic Commercial District Springfield Main Street Historic District St. Catherine of Sienna Convent St. Dominic's Catholic Church St. Rose Roman Catholic Church Complex Tatham Springs Thomas, John, House Thompson, Dr., House Turner, S. F., and Company Steam Flouring and Grist Mill Walnut Street Historic District Walton Manor Cottage Washington County Courthouse Williams, Thomas H., House Willisburg Central Bank and Post Office Willisburg Historic District
The famous African-American author and poet, Langston Hughes, spent much of his childhood in Lexington, Kentucky.
Washington County, KY has a rich and diverse history that stretches back several centuries. Established in 1792, it was named in honor of George Washington, the first President of the United States. The area was initially inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Cherokee and Shawnee nations. The first European settlers arrived in the late 18th century, primarily from Virginia and Maryland, and began to establish farms and settlements.

Washington County played a significant role in the frontier history of Kentucky. During the American Revolutionary War, it was a strategic location and saw several skirmishes between Native American tribes and settlers. The Battle of the Cornstalk Gristmill, fought in 1780, was a notable conflict in the area. As the frontier expanded and more settlers arrived, the county grew and prospered.

In the early 19th century, Washington County experienced a period of significant growth and development. The county seat, Springfield, was established in 1793 and became the center of social and economic activity in the area. Agriculture, particularly tobacco farming, was a major industry, and the county became known for its high-quality crops. The construction of roads and the arrival of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad in the mid-19th century further stimulated trade and transportation in the region.

In the 20th century, Washington County faced both challenges and opportunities. The decline of tobacco farming impacted the local economy, but new industries emerged, such as dairy farming and limestone quarrying. The community has also worked to preserve its historical landmarks and promote tourism. Today, Washington County is a vibrant and welcoming community, proud of its heritage and focused on the future.

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

  • 1780s: Settlement begins in the area that would become Washington County as pioneers move westward in Kentucky.
  • 1792: Washington County is officially established as one of the first three counties in Kentucky.
  • 1793: Springfield is designated as the county seat of Washington County.
  • 1800s: The population of Washington County grows as more settlers arrive and establish farms in the area.
  • 1861-1865: During the American Civil War, Washington County sees military action and experiences the impact of the conflict.
  • Early 20th century: Washington County continues to be primarily an agricultural community with tobacco being the main cash crop.
  • 1937: The Great Flood of 1937 devastates Washington County, causing significant damage and loss of life.
  • Late 20th century: Washington County experiences changes in its economy, with a decline in agriculture and an increase in tourism.
  • Present: Washington County remains a rural county known for its historic sites and natural beauty.