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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Historical Markers in Bell County, Kentucky

 
Clickable Map of Bell County, Kentucky and Immediately Adjacent Jurisdictions image/svg+xml 2019-10-06 U.S. Census Bureau, Abe.suleiman; Lokal_Profil; HMdb.org; J.J.Prats/dc:title> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Usa_counties_large.svg Bell County, KY (34) Clay County, KY (9) Harlan County, KY (33) Knox County, KY (7) Leslie County, KY (9) Whitley County, KY (15) Claiborne County, TN (18) Lee County, VA (31)  BellCounty(34) Bell County (34)  ClayCounty(9) Clay County (9)  HarlanCounty(33) Harlan County (33)  KnoxCounty(7) Knox County (7)  LeslieCounty(9) Leslie County (9)  WhitleyCounty(15) Whitley County (15)  ClaiborneCountyTennessee(18) Claiborne County (18)  LeeCountyVirginia(31) Lee County (31)
Adjacent to Bell County, Kentucky
      Clay County (9)  
      Harlan County (33)  
      Knox County (7)  
      Leslie County (9)  
      Whitley County (15)  
      Claiborne County, Tennessee (18)  
      Lee County, Virginia (31)  
 
Touch name on this list to highlight map location.
Touch blue arrow, or on map, to go there.
1Kentucky (Bell County), Clear Creek Springs — First Camp Site In Kentucky
Dr. Thomas Walker and 5 companions. employed by the Loyal Land Company, came into this region April 14, 1750, to locate lands for settlement in these western reaches of Virginia. His 1750 journal relates that he established a camp at this spot . . . Map (db m159751) HM
2Kentucky (Bell County), Clear Creek Springs — 1286 — Henderson SettlementSettlement is 17 miles west on Ky 190
Rev. Hiram M. Frakes founded this Methodist Settlement in 1925. Begun in a cabin with 13 students, it became an institution for spiritual and educational development of mountain youth. Frakes guided and influenced the entire Middle Laurel Fork . . . Map (db m162490) HM
3Kentucky (Bell County), Ewing — Indian Rock
Daniel Boone’s Trail from North Carolina to Kentucky 1775Map (db m177861) HM
4Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — "This American Gibraltar"
"Cumberland Gap is the strongest position I have ever seen except Gibraltar." These were Union General George W. Morgan's words after viewing the fortification around the Gap. On June 19, 1862, he wrote to Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton, "The . . . Map (db m35770) HM
5Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 521 — A Masterful Retreat
During the Civil War, Cumberland Gap was held alternately by Union and CSA armies. USA forces under Gen. George W. Morgan occupied it June 18 to Sept. 17, 1862. Cut off from supplies and surrounded, Morgan with 9,000 men retreated successfully to . . . Map (db m50230) HM
6Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 129 — Colonel Arthur Campbell
Grave of Colonel Arthur Campbell (1743-1811). Statesman, revolutionary soldier, justice, legislator, county lieutenant. Sons, James and John killed in War of 1812.Map (db m57938) HM
7Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 2450 — Cumberland Gap / Grant Visits Cumberland Gap
(side 1) Cumberland Gap Providing a viable transportation route through the rugged terrain of the Appalachian Mountains, the Cumberland Gap was valued by both Union and Confederate armies during the Civil War. Along with the East . . . Map (db m181079) HM
8Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Defense of the Gap
During the Civil War this earthwork - called Fort Rains by the Confederates and Fort McCook by the Federals - was one of many fortifications ringing Cumberland Gap. These defenses were considered too formidable to be taken by direct assault, which . . . Map (db m35733) HM
9Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Dirt-and-Log FortsCumberland Gap National Historical Park
Where you see a picnic ground today, imagine a seven-sided structure made of earth and wooden walls, approximately 40 feet by 70 feet. The outer walls of this Civil War fort were approximately five feet high with an earth-covered powder magazine . . . Map (db m88656) HM
10Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Gateway to Kaintuck
For travelers who had to walk, the Appalachian mountains seemed like an impenetrable wall, 600 miles long and 150 miles wide. Here at Cumberland Gap you could find both a good way in and a good way out of that rugged labyrinth of ridges, coves, . . . Map (db m35880) HM
11Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Invasion through the Gap
For the North, Cumberland Gap was a natural invasion route into the South - providing access to vulnerable railroads and valuable minerals and salt works in East Tennessee and southwest Virginia. For the South, the Gap was a gateway for an . . . Map (db m35703) HM
12Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Leave Nothing Useful BehindCumberland Gap National Historical Park
The long crater you see here is all that remains of the Union warehouse that stood here in 1862. Advancing Confederates had to wait 18 hours as scattered munitions continued to explode unexpectedly. By then the once-surrounded Union garrison of . . . Map (db m177860) HM
13Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 2217 — Lewis and Clark in Kentucky Cumberland GapCumberland Gap
Meriwether Lewis, coleader of the Lewis & Clark Expedition, with a party of Expedition veterans and a Mandan Indian delegation, went through Cumberland Gap in Nov. 1806 en route to Washington to report on the expedition. Over. Cumberland . . . Map (db m33299) HM
14Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Middlesboro Country Club
Founded 1889, this nine-hole golf course is claimed to be the oldest continuously played course in the United States. This semi-private club today has a pro-shop, concessions, and club and cart rentals.Map (db m181084) HM
15Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 1262 — Middlesboro Golf Club
One of the oldest in US, founded 1889. The present nine-hole course located on site where original was laid out by the English developers who came 1886 and brought the golf game to this mountain region. In 1899, a financial crash in England took . . . Map (db m181083) HM
16Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 2225 — Middlesboro Meteorite Crater Impact Site
Designated by the Kentucky Society of Professional Geologists as a Distinguished Geological Site. Middlesboro is one of only a few cities on the North American Continent located in the basin of a meteorite impact structure. Sometime over the . . . Map (db m33296) HM
17Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 832 — Middlesborough
English colony founded in 1886 by Alexander Arthur. Project financed by English company, the American Association, because of timber and rich mineral deposits here. Almost 100,000 mountainous acres in Va., Tenn., and Ky. purchased for the . . . Map (db m33297) HM
18Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 1227 — Mountain Vision
Alexander Arthur, 1846-1912, an outstanding figure in history of Middlesboro. He came here in 1885 to prospect, discovering coal and iron ore deposits. President of American Association, formed to carry out his plans for a mining and manufacturing . . . Map (db m33298) HM
19Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 1228 — Oldest House
Built about 1800 in Yellow Creek Valley, the second brick house in the county, and the oldest one still standing. The bricks were made from clay by slave labor. Home of Rev. John Calvin Colson, "Patriarch of Yellow Creek Valley," preacher, teacher, . . . Map (db m181081) HM
20Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Pinnacle Overlook
We started just as the sun began to gild the tops of the high mountains. We ascended Cumberland Mountain, from the top of which the bright luminary of the day appeared to our view in all his rising glory; the mists dispersed and the floating . . . Map (db m35906) HM
21Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — St. Mary's Episcopal Church
This is one of the finest examples of Carpenter Gothic architecture in the U.S. The cornerstone was laid in 1890 and the church was dedicated on February 11, 1891. The design is based o blueprints of St. Mary's Church in Middlesborough, England. . . . Map (db m181082) HM
22Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — The Emigrant's Dream
Cumberland Gap, the break in the ridgeline you see ahead, is far more than just a pass through a long, rugged mountain barrier. For a generation of American pioneers this was the gateway from their old lives and limitations out to a frontier . . . Map (db m35899) HM
23Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Two-Way TrafficCumberland Gap National Historical Park — National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —
Two hundred years ago, pioneers poured through Cumberland Gap on their way west to a better life. But not all the traffic on the Wilderness Road was westbound. By the 1820s, drovers pushed huge herds of hogs and smaller herds of cattle and sheep . . . Map (db m167001) HM
24Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — Waiting for the Battle that Never Came
A natural thoroughfare through the Appalachian Mountain barrier, Cumberland Gap assumed great strategic importance in the Civil War. Both sides sought to control the Gap. It changed hands three times, but no battles were fought. Troops garrisoned . . . Map (db m35745) HM
25Kentucky (Bell County), Middlesboro — 1402 — Watts Furnaces / Iron Made in Kentucky
Watts Furnace Stood ˝ mile SW. A pair of blast furnaces built by the Watts Steel and Iron Syndicate, Ltd., 1890-93, and operated until 1898. Each iron shell stack was 75 ft. high with a maximum inner diameter of 17 ft. Using coke fuel and . . . Map (db m170830) HM
26Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — Chained Rock
Chained Rock is a boulder formation of Pine Mountain, 2,200 feet above sea level. The Chain, 101 feet long with seen pound links, was carried here by a four-mule team in two trips. It is anchored to the rock with pegs 1˝ × 24 inches concreted into . . . Map (db m181126) HM
27Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — 1426 — Cumberland Ford
One of the most important points on the Wilderness Road marked by Daniel Boone in 1775. Ford first used by Indians, then by early explorers and the Long Hunters. After Boone opened the way west, more than 100,000 settlers used the crossing as a . . . Map (db m35831) HM
28Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — 683 — Invasion and Retreat
On route of Gen. E. Kirby Smith's Confederate invasion of Kentucky, fall 1862, concurrent with that of Bragg to the west. At Richmond Smith defeated USA, then occupied Lexington, Sept. 2. The Battle of Perryville prevented CSA plan to take central . . . Map (db m181124) HM
29Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — 198 — Joshua Fry Bell
Bell County formed from Harlan and Knox Counties, 1867. Named for Joshua Fry Bell, 1811-70, Congressman, Ky. Sec. of State, Comr. to peace conference in 1861 and State Legislator. He was g. grandson of Dr. Thomas Walker, explorer of Ky. . . . Map (db m35871) HM
30Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — Mountain Gateway
Bell County, named for Joshua Fry Bell (1811-1870), was formed just after the Civil War in February of 1867 from portions of Harlan and Knox Counties. Pineville, the county seat, being so near the site where pioneers on the Wilderness Road crossed . . . Map (db m35875) HM
31Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — 2045 — Naming of the Cumberland River
Near this site where the creek enters the river, on April 17, 1750, Dr. Thomas Walker first viewed the river he named for the Duke of Cumberland. Known as the "Narrows," this area became a significant gateway for travelers on the Wilderness Road. . . . Map (db m181163) HM
32Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — The Wilderness Road
Following in Their Footsteps The Wilderness Road was a 200-mil, overland route made famous by legendary frontiersman Daniel Boone. First mapped in 1750 by Dr. Thomas Walker, the route began as a series of braided trails, called traces, created by . . . Map (db m181125) HM
33Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — 1272 — Wallsend Mine
The first to begin operations in Bell County, starting in 1889, with 1500 acres of coal land. Extension of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad to this area in 1888 marked the beginning of a new industrial era. This mine was not a financial . . . Map (db m35854) HM
34Kentucky (Bell County), Pineville — Wilderness Road Cemetery
This cemetery was established by pioneers traveling along Boone's Wilderness Road during the late 1700's and early 1800's. These first settlers camped in the bottomland that is now Wasioto Golf Course while preparing to cross the Cumberland . . . Map (db m181156) HM
 
 
Dec. 7, 2021