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flag  History of Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Journey back in time to Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Visit Lexington, Kentucky, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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Lexington, Kentucky, USA - Hampton Court

Lexington, Fayette, Kentucky, USA

The first American performance of a Beethoven symphony was in Lexington in 1817.

There is MUCH more to discover about Lexington, Kentucky, USA. Read on!

Lexington Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

Hampton Court
Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Hampton Court
Post Office
Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Post Office
Morgan's Home
Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Morgan's Home

"John Hunt Morgan (June 1, 1825 – September 4, 1864) was a Confederate general in the American Civil War.

...He was killed at Greeneville, Tennessee in September 1864. "

Morgan's home was built in Lexington, Kentucky in 1814.

Discover Lexington: History, News, Travel, and Stories

Add informationAdd History/News/Story
1775 - Lexington, Kentucky founded
1854 - Lexington
Lexington, a handsome and wealthy city, capital of Fayette county, Kentucky, on the Town fork of the Elkhorn river, 26 miles S. E. from Frankfort, 81 miles S. from Cincinnati, and 94 miles E. from Louisville. Lexington is the second city of the state in population and importance. Few inland towns are more delightfully situated or more remarkable for the beauty of their general appearance. It is laid out in rectangular blocks ; the streets are well paved, and bordered with ornamental trees. Main street is 80 feet wide, and more than a mile long. Many of the public and private buildings are spacious and very handsome specimens of architecture. The surrounding country is undulating, highly cultivated, and dotted with elegant mansions. Lexington is distinguished for the excellence of its literary and scientific establishments. Transylvania University of this place is a flourishing institution: the departments of law and medicine are probably more frequented than any other in the Western... Read MORE...

1861 - August 6 - Lexington KY-Union miltary camp forms in neutral state
1862 - October 18 - Morgan's raiders capture federal garrison at Lexington, KY
1871 - Oyster Can Explodes
A sealed can of oysters carelessly left on the embers in a store at Lexington, Ky., the other day, exploded with tremendous force, bursting the grate to atoms, shaking the house, and severely injuring a bystander.
St Joseph Herald
Saint Joseph, Michigan
January 28, 1871
1894 - May 20 - A record late snow of two to eight inches whitened parts of central and eastern Kentucky. Lexington KY received six inches of snow.

The Weather Channel
1895 - Lexington
Lexington, a handsome city, the capital of Fayette co., Ky., is on the Kentucky Central Railroad, at its junction with the Louisville, Cincinnati & Lexington Railroad, and on the Cincinnati Southern Railroad, 29 miles E.S.E. of Frankfort, 77 miles S. of Cincinnati, and 94 miles E. by S. of Louisville. Lat. 38°6' N.; lon. 84° 33' W. The city is very pleasantly situated, and is surrounded by a fertile, undulating country. The streets cross one another at right angles, are well paved, and lighted with gas. Main street is 80 feet wide. Here is a monument to Henry Clay which cost about $50,000. He resided many years at Ashland, near this town. Lexington is the seat of the Kentucky University, which was organized in 1858 and has 9 instructors and about 100 students and a library of 20,000 volumes. A college of law and an agricultural and mechanical college are connected with this institution. This city also contains a state lunatic asylum, which occupies a large and handsome edifice, 17... Read MORE...

1896 - Mangled By A Trolley Car. Miss Masie Todd, Cousin of Robert Todd Lincoln, Killed.
Lexington, Ky., May 13.-Special Telegram-An electric street car ran down and killed Miss MASIE TODD, who was attempting to cross in front of it on her bicycle on South Broadway, at 6 o'clock this evening. She was horribly mangled, one wheel passing over her body. She was 20 years old, the youngest daughter of the venerable Dr. Lyman Beecher Todd. She was a cousin to Robert Todd Lincoln of Chicago. Her brother, Lee Todd, and sister, Mrs. Nellie Baldwin, live in Boston, from which city she recently returned, where she had been visiting them. She had been riding a bicycle only a week.
The Daily Inter Ocean
Chicago, Illinois
May 14, 1896
Lexington, Ky., May 14. - Fire broke out in the attic of the court house here at 9:45 a.m., and in a few minutes the upper story and dome were in flames. Hart's statue, "Woman Triumphant" bought by Lexington women for $5,000 was in the rotunda. The court house was completely burned, and in an hour nothing remained but walls. Hart's beautiful masterpiece was destroyed in an attempt to remove it. Many of the loose records were carried out and others are in a steel vault in the basement. The court house was built ten years ago and cost $125,000. The fire started in the jury room, which was vacant. The county school superintendent was conducting an examination of fifty school children in the court room, and they were all rescued.

The firemen were helpless in the beginning, and soon deserted the court house to save surrounding buildings. A high wind prevailed, and for a time the buildings to the northeast were in great danger from flying embers. Bucket and garden-hose brigades put out... Read MORE...

1902 - STATE SCHOOL BURNED. The 282 Children Confined There are Thought to Have Gotten Out Safely.
Lexington, Ky., March 20.- At 1 o'clock this morning was notified that the state school of reform six miles from the city and in which 282 children are confined was in flames. The inmates are thought to have all been gotten out safely. A fire engine was sent from the city. At 1:10 the boy's outbuildings collapsed.

The building in which the telephone is located was on fire and one of the guards answering the telephone declared that he must run as the heat and smoke made it impossible to remain. At 2 o'clock the building used as offices and dormitory for boys was in ruins and the flames attacked the manual training building. The engine was playing a stream of water on the flames. So far as can be ascertained no lives were lost. The origin of the fire is unknown.

Naugatuck Daily News, Naugatuck, CT 20 Mar 1902
The residence of Colonel Hart Gibson on the Harrodsburg pike was saved from burning by quick work on the part of the fire department early yesterday morning.

The roof was on fire when the chemical engine started, and upon arrival a hole had burnt in the roof. The flames were extinguished before much damage had been done. It is believed that the fire started from a flue.

Our household desires to return thanks to the fire department for its ready response to the fire call Sunday morning. The admirable discipline and intelligent action of the department enabled it to reach the ground and extinguish the fire in less than ten minutes after the call. The "Chemical" is worth its weight in gold.
The Morning Herald
Lexington, Kentucky
March 31, 1902
Lexington, Ky., Oct. 28 - Passengers on the Louisville Southern train No. 9, due here at 7 p.m., had a narrow escape when the train was hurled from a bridge seven miles from here into a creek forty feet below. Twelve persons were injured, but none was killed.
The seriously injured are:
W. L. HERNDON, mail clerk.
JOSEPH THOMPSON, express messenger.
J. W. HUGHES, Lexington.

The tender, mail and baggage coaches and smoker were splintered and thrown into the creek, and the bridge which was 150 feet long, entirely destroyed.
Daily Telegram
Eau Claire, Wisconsin
October 28, 1905
1908 - CHRIS. LILLARD HURT IN FALL FROM A CAR. Knocked Unconscious While Attempting to Alight From Moving Car.
Chris. Lillard, who resides at 141 East Fourth street, met with an accident about noon yesterday which will no doubt confine him to his home for some time. While attempting to alight from a moving street car at the corner of Fourth and Limestone streets yesterday, Mr. Lillard in some way lost his balance and fell violently to the pavement.

The fall rendered him unconscious, causing the blood to flow freely from his ears, mouth and nose. He was taken to his home and Dr. Scott was hastily summoned.

Mr. Lillard is a well known business man of this city, at present being in charge of the furniture department at the department store of J. D. Purcell & Company.

Mr. Lillard was resting easily at a late hour last night.
The Lexington Herald
Lexington, Kentucky
February 3, 1908
Fire that might have attained serious proportions in the second floor of the South Broadway Inn, at 343 South Broadway, at 8 o'clock last night, was extinguished by the Fire Department before great damage was done.

The firebox under a great, apparently defective, ignited the wood work near it. With a chemical engine the department ended the fire. The wood work about the fire place and the hearth was consumed. The loss is estimated at $50.
The Lexington Herald
Lexington, Kentucky
February 3, 1908
1910 - Eye Burned Out By Red Hot Iron. Blacksmith Cahill Victim Of A Serious Accident While At Work.
George Cahill, a blacksmith, living on Jefferson Street, met with an accident yesterday afternoon by which his eye was burned out. He was at work in Kroghan’s blacksmith shop on West Short Street on a small piece of red hot iron when it jumped from the anvil and struck him in the eye.

After seeing a doctor, he went to St. Joseph’s Hospital.
Morning Herald
Lexington, Kentucky
July 3, 1910
Lexington, a city, the capital of Fayette co., Ky., is on the Louisville and Nashville, the Queen and Crescent and other railroads, 29 miles ESE. of Frankfort. Lat. 38° 3' N. ; Lon. 84° 33' W. It is surrounded by a fertile, undulating country. It is the seat of the Kentucky University and of a state agricultural and mechanical college, and has also the Hamilton and McClelland Female Colleges, St. John's and St. Catherine's Academies, and the Sayre Female Institute. The city contains a state lunatic asylum, state reform school, court-house, public library, etc. A fine monument to the memory of Henry Clay has been erected here. The city has extensive manufactures of distilled and malted liquors, flour, foundry-products, carriages, soap, etc. It is in the centre of the Blue Grass Country" and has a large trade in grain and live-stock. The Lexington race-track is famous. Lexington was formerly the capital of Kentucky. It was founded in 1775 and incorporated in 1782. Pop. in 1880, 16,656 ; ... Read MORE...

1917 - Auto Damaged in Collision
An automobile driven by George Calvin, of this city, collided with a horse and buggy driven by James Ecton, colored, at the corner of Main and Washington streets Sunday. The machine was considerably damaged by the impact. The windshield was broken and glass was scattered over Mr. Calvin, who suffered several slight cuts on the face. The other The other occupants of the car, his wife and three children, were injured. The shafts of the buggy were broken and the vehicle otherwise damaged. The horse was knocked down but was not injured. Mr. Calvin's injuries were attended by Dr. Isaac Browne.

Mr. Calvin and his family were en route to Mt. Sterling to spend the day when the accident occurred.
The Lexington Herald
Lexington, Kentucky
December 25, 1917
1955 - March 15 - WLEX TV channel 18 in Lexington, KY (NBC) begins broadcasting
2023 - Here's a list of places to go and things to do in Lexington:
1. Keeneland: If you're in Lexington, you have to experience the world-famous Keeneland Race Course. It's not just for horse racing; the picturesque grounds are open for tours and events year-round. The architecture and landscaping are simply stunning, and there's a sense of tradition and history that pervades the place.

2. Horse Farm Tours: Lexington is renowned for its horse farms, and you can't visit without taking a tour of some of the most famous ones. Companies like Horse Country offer guided tours of various farms where you can get up close and personal with these majestic creatures.

3. The Kentucky Horse Park: This is a must-visit for equine enthusiasts. It's both a working farm and an educational theme park dedicated to the history and care of horses. The museum, the Hall of Champions, and the beautiful grounds are a treat for horse lovers.

4. Bourbon Distilleries: While bourbon is more closely associated with other parts of Kentucky, you can still explore some great ... Read MORE...

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Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Lexington, Kentucky, USA

We currently have information about 8 ancestors who were born or died in Lexington.

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Updated: 10/15/2023 9:21:51 PM