The Quest for Land
Why did so many people brave the dangers of frontier life to come to Clark County and the Bluegrass? The answer is land -- cheap land, fertile land. The quest for land drove the settlement of Kentucky.
John Findley was a hunter and fur trader who, in 1752, spent several months at the Shawnee town Eskippakithiki in Clark County. Findley returned to the eastern colonies with tales of rich land. It was Findley who told Daniel Boone, then 21, of the beautiful, fertile land teeming with game.
Seventeen years later, Boone finally reached the Bluegrass. It was the "second Eden" Findley had described and Boone decided to settle his family there as soon as possible. He was not the only one. The reports of Kentucky's riches brought back by Boone and others fueled the rush to this "promised land."
The dangers of reaching Kentucky, the threat of Indian attack, and the realities of harsh life on the frontier did not slow the wave of settlement. Land in Kentucky was fertile, and it was cheap compared to land in the east. It could be bought on easy terms and was even given away if certain conditions were met.
Every settler came in the hopes of making a better life. Many came to escape the hardships created by the Revolutionary War.
In just fifteen short years, between 1775 and 1790, the population of Kentucky rose from just 150 to over 73,000. More than 11,000 of the new residents were black, of whom only 114 were free. Almost all of these settlers lived in the Bluegrass or on its edges. The face of Kentucky was changed forever in those years.
Because of its close proximity to Fort Boonesborough, present-day Clark County was well known to early hunters and explorers, and many who settled in Clark County first passed through Boonesborough. At least nineteen early settlements have been documented within the present boundaries of Clark County, although the location of some remains elusive.
2. Fort Boonesborough
3. John Strode's Station
4. Stephen Boyle's Station
5. William Bramblett's Station
6. William Bush Settlement (Lower Howard's Creek Settlement)
7. John Constant's Station
8. Elijah Crossthwait's Station
9. John Donaldson's Station and related settlement
10. Dunaway's Station
11. Frazier's Station
13. David McGee's Station
14. Tracy's Station/Stoner Settlement
15. William Scholl's Station
Erected by The Winchester/Clark County Tourism Commission.
Location. 37° 53.401′ N, 84° 15.607′ W. Marker is near Winchester, Kentucky, in Clark County. Marker can be reached from Ford Road/4 Mile Road (Kentucky Route 1924) 1.2 miles south of Boonesboro Road (Kentucky Route 627), on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. The exhibit can be reached from the parking area on KY Route 1924. The trailhead is at the edge of the parking area here. This wayside exhibit can be found partway up the trail that leads to the fort at the top of the hill. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1250 Ford Road, Winchester KY 40391, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Eye of the Rich Land (a few steps from this marker); A Long, Steep Road (a few steps from this marker); Roads in the Wilderness (a few steps from this marker); Rock and Man (a few steps from this marker); Defending the Kentucky River (within shouting distance of this marker); Three Confederate Raids Common Cliffside Plants (within shouting distance of this marker); Thomas B. Brooks, Army Engineer (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Winchester.
More about this marker. This marker is part of the historic site known as the "Civil War Fort at Boonesboro." CAUTION: The climb up the hill is VERY steep.
Also see . . . Civil War Fort at Boonesboro. (Submitted on June 25, 2014, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.)
Categories. • Colonial Era • Settlements & Settlers • War, US Revolutionary •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 24, 2014, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 325 times since then and 27 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on June 24, 2014, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.