A 1775 treaty with Cherokee tribes opened Kentucky for colonial settlement. Daniel Boone was among the first to arrive. The country was wooded and wild and skirmishes with Indians were a frequent worry, but immigrants from Scotland and Ireland soon came.
- The eastern part of Kentucky is rich in soft bituminous coal, while western Kentucky contains deposits of coal near the surface. Both areas have suffered from environmental damage because of the mining.
- In 1893, two sisters from Louisville wrote the song”Happy Birthday to You.”
- Horse breeding and horse racing are big business in Kentucky. Churchill Downs, in Louisville, is one of the most famous horse tracks in the world.
- Darby Pie, a chocolate and walnut dessert, was created in the 1950s at the Melrose Inn, in Prospect.
- Underground caves extend through much of Kentucky. The Mammoth Cave System runs more than 367 miles under the ground.
- Post-it notes are made in Cynthiana, Kentucky—the only place in the world where these sticky notes are produced.
- The United States Bullion Depository in Fort Knox is a vault containing a huge reserve of gold—260 billion dollars’ worth!
- President Abraham Lincoln, Muhammed Ali, and many country singers are from Kentucky.
Kentucky Quick Stats
State Capital: Frankfort (population, 25,527)
Largest City: Louisville (population, 597,337)
Largest Metro: Kentuckiana
State Bird: cardinal
State Flower: goldenrod
Admission to Union: June 1, 1792
Questions and Answers
Question: Why is Kentucky called the “Bluegrass state?”
Answer: Kentucky’s official name is the Commonwealth of Kentucky, but its nickname came from the blue pasture grass that grows there.
Watch a video about Kentucky.