State of Kentucky - KY

The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a U.S. state located in the Southern United States, although it is sometimes included, geographically, in the Midwest. In 1792, it became the fifteenth state to join the Union. Kentucky is known as the "Bluegrass State," a nickname based on the fact that bluegrass is present in many of the lawns and pastures throughout the state. Kentucky is well known for thoroughbred horses, horse racing, local bourbon whisky distilleries, bluegrass music, coal and college basketball.

Geography and Geology
See also: List of Kentucky counties
Kentucky Kentucky's regions (click on image color coding information.) Kentucky borders states of both the Midwest and the Southeast. West Virginia and Virginia lie to the east; Tennessee to the south; Missouri to the west; and Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio to the north.

The Commonwealth's northern border is formed by the Ohio River, and the western border is formed by the Mississippi River. Other major rivers in Kentucky include the Kentucky River, Tennessee River, the Cumberland River, the Green River, and the Licking River.

Kentucky is the only U.S. state to have non-contiguous parts exist as an enclave of other states. Far western Kentucky includes a small part of land, Kentucky Bend, on the Mississippi River bordered by Missouri and accessible via Tennessee, created by the New Madrid Earthquake. Also there is a section of Kentucky across the Ohio connected to Indiana near Evansville.

Kentucky has more navigable shoreline than any other state in the union, other than Alaska.[citation needed] This is thanks to Kentucky's intricate system of lakes and rivers, as well as being home to Kentucky Lake, Lake Barkley, and Lake Cumberland, all of which rank in the top 20 in size area of U.S. lakes.

Kentucky also has more farms per square mile than any other U.S. state. Despite being the 14th smallest state in terms of land area, Kentucky still ranks 5th in the total number of farms.

Rural Bluegrass sceneKentucky can be divided into five primary regions: the Cumberland Plateau in the east, the north-central Bluegrass region, the south-central and western Pennyroyal Plateau, the Western Coal Fields and the far-west Jackson Purchase.

The Bluegrass region is commonly divided into two regions, the Inner Bluegrass—the encircling 90 miles (145 km) around Lexington—and the Outer Bluegrass, the region that contains most of the Northern portion of the state, above the Knobs. Much of the outer Bluegrass is in the Eden Shale Hills area, made up of short, steep, and very narrow hills.

Kentucky has 120 counties, third in the U.S. behind Texas' 254 and Georgia's 159.[1]

Kentucky is a land with diverse environments and abundant resources. These features are some of the most prized treasures of Kentucky residents. Kentucky is well known for its varied geology, including expansive cave and karst systems. It has valuable coalfields, critical wetlands and lush forests. Kentucky’s 90,000 miles of stream system provides one of the most expansive and complex stream systems in the nation.

Significant natural attractions
Cumberland Gap, chief passageway through the Appalachian Mountains in early American history.
Cumberland Falls State Park, where a "moon-bow", the only such phenomenon in the Western Hemisphere, may be seen in the mists of the falls.
Mammoth Cave National Park, featuring the world's longest cave system.
Red River Gorge Geological Area, part of the Daniel Boone National Forest.
Land Between the Lakes, a National Recreation Area managed by the United States Forest Service.
Bernheim Forest a 14,000 acre (57 km²) arboretum, forest and nature preserve located in Clermont.
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site in Hodgenville.
Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area near Whitley City.
Trail of Tears National Historic Trail also passes through Kentucky.
Black Mountain, state's highest point. Runs along the border of Harlan and Letcher counties.
Bad Branch Falls State Nature Preserve, 2,639-acre state nature preserve on southern slope of Pine Mountain in Letcher County. Includes one of the largest concentrations of rare and endangered species in the state, as well as a 60-foot waterfall and a Kentucky Wild River.
Jefferson Memorial Forest, located south of Louisville in the Knobs region, the largest municipally run forest in the United States.
Green River State Park, located in Taylor County.
Lake Cumberland, 1255 miles of shoreline located in South Central Kentucky.

Main article: History of Kentucky
See also: Kentucky in the Civil War, Kentucky Historical Society
Daniel Boone Escorting Settlers through the Cumberland Gap (George Caleb Bingham, oil on canvas, 1851–52)Although inhabited by Native Americans in prehistoric times, when explorers and settlers began entering Kentucky in the mid-1700s, there were no permanent Native American settlements in the region. Instead, the country was used as hunting grounds by Shawnees from the north and Cherokees from the south. Much of what is now Kentucky was purchased from Native Americans in the treaties of Fort Stanwix (1768) and Sycamore Shoals (1775). Thereafter, Kentucky grew rapidly as the first settlements west of the Appalachian Mountains were founded, with settlers (primarily from Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania) entering the region via the Cumberland Gap and the Ohio River. The most famous of these early explorers and settlers was Daniel Boone, traditionally considered one of the founders of the state. Shawnees north of the Ohio River, however, were unhappy about the settlement of Kentucky, and allied themselves with the British in the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783). Kentucky was a battleground during the war; the Battle of Blue Licks, one of the last major battles of the Revolution, was fought in Kentucky.

After the American Revolution, the counties of Virginia beyond the Appalachian Mountains became known as Kentucky County. Eventually, the residents of Kentucky County petitioned for a separation from Virginia. Ten constitutional conventions were held in the Constitution Square Courthouse in Danville between 1784 and 1792. In 1790, Kentucky's delegates accepted Virginia's terms of separation, and a state constitution was drafted at the final convention in April 1792. On June 1, 1792, Kentucky became the fifteenth state to be admitted to the union and Isaac Shelby, a military veteran from Virginia, was elected the first Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Both Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis were born in Kentucky.While remaining loyal to the Union, Kentucky was a border state during the American Civil War. The state did not secede, and was officially neutral until a new legislature took office on August 5, 1861 with strong Union sympathies. The majority of the Commonwealth's citizens also had strong Union sympathies. On September 4, 1861, Confederate General Leonidas Polk broke Kentucky's neutrality by invading Columbus, Kentucky. As a result of the Confederate invasion, Union General Ulysses S. Grant entered Paducah, Kentucky. On September 7, 1861, the Kentucky State Legislature, angered by the Confederate invasion, ordered the Union flag to be raised over the state capitol in Frankfort, declaring its allegiance with the Union. In November of 1861, during the Russellville Convention, Southern sympathizers attempted to establish an alternative state government with the goal of secession but failed to displace the legitimate government in Frankfort. The "Confederate capitol" was located in Bowling Green and was represented by the central star on the "Stars and Bars"; Kentucky's ongoing neutrality prompted some Confederate officers to remove the central star from their battle flags (see the battle flag of General Braxton Bragg). On August 13, 1862, Confederate General Edmund Kirby Smith's Army of East Tennessee invaded Kentucky and on August 28, 1862, Confederate General Braxton Bragg's Army of Mississippi entered Kentucky beginning the Kentucky Campaign. Bragg's retreat following the Battle of Perryville left the state under the control of the Union Army for the remainder of the war. The Confederate Memorial Day is observed by some in Kentucky on Jefferson Davis' birthday, June Third.

On January 30, 1900, Governor William Goebel was mortally wounded by an assailant while in the process of contesting the election of 1899, initially assumed to be won by William S. Taylor. For several months, J. C. W. Beckham, Goebel's running mate, and Taylor fought over who was the real governor until the U.S. Supreme Court decided in May that Beckham was the rightful governor. Taylor fled to Indiana and was later indicted as a co-conspirator in Goebel's assassination.

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Government and politics
Currently, Kentucky's governor, Ernie Fletcher, both U.S. Senators, Jim Bunning and Mitch McConnell, and out of six Congressional Districts, five U.S. Representatives are members of the Republican Party. The Kentucky Constitution provides for three branches of government: legislative, judicial, and executive. Kentucky's General Assembly has two chambers: the Senate and the House of Representatives. The executive branch is headed by the Governor. The judicial branch of Kentucky is made up of trial courts, called District and Circuit Courts; an intermediate appellate court, called the Kentucky Court of Appeals; and a court of last resort, the Kentucky Supreme Court. The Attorney General is Greg Stumbo.

Where politics are concerned, Kentucky historically has been very hard fought and leaned slightly toward the Democratic Party. It was never included among the "Solid South," 59% of the state's voters are officially registered as Democrats, although that majority has slimmed substantially in recent election cycles. Kentucky has voted Republican in five of the last seven presidential elections but has supported the Democratic candidates of the South. The Commonwealth supported Democrats Jimmy Carter in 1976, and Bill Clinton in 1992 and 1996, but Republican George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004. Bush won the state's 8 electoral votes overwhelmingly in 2004 by a margin of 20 percentage points and 59.6% of the vote. The most solidly Democratic counties are in the mountainous eastern unionized coal mining region, especially Pike, Floyd, Knott, Menifee, Letcher, Perry and Breathitt, and the cities of Lexington and Louisville. The Jackson Purchase area in the far west was historically a Democratic stronghold but has moved Republican recently. Paducah author Irvin S. Cobb once wrote of the purchase area: "There was no doubt about our district. Whatever might betide, she was safe and sound - a Democratic Rock of Ages." The area was once referred to as the Gibraltar of Democracy.

Historical populations
year Population


2000 4,041,769
1990 3,685,296
1980 3,660,777
1970 3,218,706
1960 3,038,156
1950 2,944,806
1940 2,845,627
1930 2,614,589
1920 2,416,630
1910 2,289,905
1900 2,147,174
1890 1,858,635
1880 1,648,690
1870 1,321,011
1860 1,155,684
1850 982,405
1840 779,828
1830 687,917
1820 564,317
1810 406,511
1800 220,955
1790 73,677
As of 2005, Kentucky has an estimated population of 4,173,405, which is an increase of 31,570, or 0.8%, from the prior year and an increase of 131,120, or 3.2%, since the year 2000. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 77,156 people (that is 287,222 births minus 210,066 deaths) and an increase due to net migration of 59,604 people into the state. Immigration from outside the United States resulted in a net increase of 27,435 people, and migration within the country produced a net increase of 32,169 people. As of 2004, Kentucky's population included about 95,000 foreign-born (2.3%).

Demographics of Kentucky (csv)
By race White Black AIAN Asian NHPI
AIAN is American Indian or Alaskan Native - NHPI is Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
2000 (total population) 91.53% 7.76% 0.61% 0.92% 0.08%
2000 (hispanic only) 1.35% 0.10% 0.04% 0.02% 0.01%
2005 (total population) 91.27% 7.98% 0.58% 1.10% 0.08%
2005 (hispanic only) 1.80% 0.12% 0.04% 0.03% 0.01%
Growth 2000-2005 (total population) 2.97% 6.16% -2.21% 23.46% 9.78%
Growth 2000-2005 (non-hispanic only) 2.44% 5.94% -3.28% 23.07% 7.98%
Growth 2000-2005 (hispanic only) 37.97% 22.34% 13.51% 38.48% 19.80%
Kentucky Population Density MapThe five largest ancestries in the commonwealth are: American (20.9%), German (12.7%), Irish (10.5%), English (9.7%), African American (7.3%).

Blacks, who made up one-fourth of Kentucky's population prior to the American Civil War, declined in number as many moved to the industrial North in the Great Migration. Today they are mostly concentrated in the southwest (notably Christian County and the city of Paducah), the Bluegrass, and the cities of Louisville and Lexington. "American ancestry" is the largest reported ancestry group throughout most of the commonwealth in the Census and most of these people are of British or Scotch-Irish descent.

Of Kentucky's 4,041,769 residents in 2000, 33.68% were members of evangelical protestant churches, 10.05% were catholics, 8.77% belonged to mainline protestant churches, 0.05% were members of orthodox churches and 0.88% were affiliated with other theologies - and 46.57% were not affiliated with any church.[2]

Those churches with 1% or more of the population were the Southern Baptist Convention (979,994 members, 24.25%), the Catholic Church (406,021 members, 10.05%), the United Methodist Church (208,720 members, 5.16%), the evangelical Independent Christian Churches/Churches of Christ (106,638 members, 2.64%), the mainline Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) (67,611 members, 1.67%), and the evangelical Church of Christ (58,602 members, 1.45%).[2]

Religious movements were important in the early history of Kentucky. Perhaps the most famous event was the interdenominational revival in August 1801 at the Cane Ridge Meeting house in Bourbon County. As part of what is now known as the "Western Revival", thousands began meeting around a Presbyterian communion service on August 6, 1801, and ended six days later on August 12, 1801 when both humans and horses ran out of food. The service was originally scheduled for August 8, but people began arriving two days earlier on a rainy August 6. The meeting was hosted by Barton Stone. Presbyterians, Methodists and some Baptists were present, as the services attempted to be interdenominational as possible. As the days wore on, some counted as many as seven preachers preaching at the same time from tree stumps or wagons.

Today Kentucky is home to several seminaries. Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville is the principal seminary for the Southern Baptist Convention. Louisville is also the home of the Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary. Lexington also has a seminary. In addition to seminaries, there are several colleges affiliated with denominations. Transylvania in Lexington is affiliated with the Disciples of Christ (Christian church). In Louisville Bellarmine and Spalding are affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. Louisville is also home to the headquarters of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and their printing press. Louisville is also home to a sizable Jewish population (One of the largest in the South).

The total gross state product for 2003 was US$129 billion. Its per-capita personal income was US$26,575, 41st in the nation. Kentucky's agricultural outputs are horses, cattle, tobacco, dairy products, hogs, soybeans, and corn. Its industrial outputs are transportation equipment, chemical products, electric equipment, machinery, food processing, tobacco products, coal, and tourism.

There are 5 income tax brackets, ranging from 2% to 6% of personal income. The sales tax rate in Kentucky is 6%. Kentucky has a broadly based classified property tax system. All classes of property, unless exempted by the Constitution, are taxed by the state, although at widely varying rates. And many of these classes are exempted from taxation by local government. Of the classes that are subject to local taxation, three have special rates set by the General Assembly, one by the Kentucky Supreme Court and the remaining classes are subject to the full local rate, which includes the tax rate set by the local taxing bodies plus all voted levies. Real property is assessed on 100% of the fair market value and property taxes are due by Dec. 31. Once the primary source of state and local government revenue, property taxes now account for only about 6% of the Kentucky's annual General Fund revenues.

Kentucky imposes a tax on intangible personal property held by a taxpayer on Jan. 1 of each year. Intangible property consists of any property or investment which represents evidence of value or the right to value. Some types of intangible property include: money market accounts, bonds, notes, retail repurchase agreements, accounts receivable, trusts, enforceable contracts sale of real estate (land contracts), money in hand, money in safe deposit boxes, annuities, interests in estates, loans to stockholders, and commercial paper.

Historically, a major problem with Kentucky's economy has been the fact that outside the Ohio River towns and Lexington, most rural counties never developed a widespread and localized industrial economy; meaning that up until World War II most families still depended on subsistence farming for survival. This is also the reason that most rural counties have only one sizable town and still have median household incomes that are often half the U.S. national average.

"Unbridled Spirit"
The "Unbridled Spirit" logoTo "boost Kentucky’s image, make it consistent through all the ways we reach people, and help Kentucky stand out from the crowd" the Fletcher administration launched a comprehensive branding campaign with the hope of making its $12 - $14 million advertising budget more effective. The "Unbridled Spirit" brand was the result of a $500,000 contract with New West, a Kentucky-based public relations, advertising and marketing firm to develop a viable brand and tagline. The administration has been aggressively marketing the brand in both the public and private sectors. The "Welcome to Kentucky" signs at border areas have Unbridled Spirit's symbol on them. [3]

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See also: List of Kentucky State Highways
Five major interstate highways service Kentucky.

Interstate 24 crosses from Illinois at Paducah and exits at Oak Grove for Tennessee.
Interstate 64 enters the state from Indiana at Louisville and exits the state at Catlettsburg for West Virginia.
Interstate 65 enters from Tennessee near Franklin and exits for Indiana at Louisville.
Interstate 71 begins at the junction of Interstate 64 at the Kennedy Interchange in Louisville and exits the state for Ohio with Interstate 75 at Covington.
Interstate 75 enters from Tennessee near Williamsburg and exits for Ohio at Covington. It is Kentucky's longest interstate highway.
Three bypasses and spurs also serve the state.

Interstate 264, also known as the Shawnee Expressway and the Henry Watterson Expressway, is an inner-loop of Louisville.
Interstate 265 is an outer-loop of Louisville.
Interstate 471 is a spur from Interstate 275 at Highland Heights and leaves the state for Cincinnati, Ohio where it ends at Interstate 71.
There are nine parkways that serve Kentucky.

Audubon Parkway (Henderson to Owensboro)
Bert T. Combs Mountain Parkway (Clark County to Magoffin County)
Edward T. Breathitt Pennyrile Parkway (Henderson to Hopkinsville)
Hal Rogers Parkway (London to Hazard)
Julian M. Carroll Purchase Parkway (Fulton to Calvert City)
Louie B. Nunn Cumberland Parkway (Barren County to Somerset)
Martha Layne Collins Bluegrass Parkway (Elizabethtown to Versailles)
Wendell H. Ford Western Kentucky Parkway (Elizabethtown to Eddyville)
William H. Natcher Parkway (Bowling Green to Owensboro)
Kentucky and Missouri are the only two states to share a boundary with no road directly connecting the two states. This is a result of the multiplexing of US Highways 51, 60, and 62 crossing the Ohio River between Illinois and Kentucky, and the multiplexing of US Highways 60 and 62 crossing the Mississippi River between Illinois and Missouri, rather than US Highways 60 and 62 crossing the Mississippi River directly from Kentucky to Missouri.

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Main article: List of Kentucky railroads
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Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport
Louisville International Airport
Blue Grass Airport (Lexington)
Owensboro-Daviess County Regional Airport
Barkley Regional Airport (Paducah)
See also: Comair Flight 5191
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Important cities and towns
30 Largest Cities [4] 2005 Population
Louisville 556,429
Lexington 268,080
Owensboro 55,459
Bowling Green 52,272
Covington 42,811
Richmond 30,893
Hopkinsville 28,821
Henderson 27,666
Frankfort 27,210
Florence 26,349
Jeffersontown 26,100
Paducah 25,575
Nicholasville 23,897
Elizabethtown 23,450
Ashland 21,510
Radcliff 21,961
Georgetown 19,988
Madisonville 19,273
Independence 19,065
St. Matthews 17,309
Erlanger 16,852
Winchester 16,494
Newport 15,911
Fort Thomas 15,592
Murray 15,538
Danville 15,409
Shively 15,212
Glasgow 14,062
Berea 13,230
Somerset 12,136
Downtown Louisville at night Downtown LexingtonKentucky's largest cities and most of the fast growing counties are concentrated in what is referred to as the Golden Triangle, which is almost entirely in the Bluegrass region, with the exception of Hardin, Meade and LaRue counties which are in the Pennyroyal region.

The largest city in Kentucky is Louisville Metro, with a 2005 census estimated population of 556,429. The Louisville Combined Statistical Area (CSA) has a population of 1,342,918 (with 1,120,039 within Kentucky). The second largest city is Lexington with a 2005 census estimated population of 268,080 and its CSA having a population of 635,547. The Northern Kentucky area (the seven Kentucky counties in the Cincinnati CSA) had an estimated population of 403,727 in 2005. The metropolitan areas of Louisville, Lexington, and Northern Kentucky have a combined population of 2,159,313 as of 2005, which is 51.7% of the state's total population.

The two other fast growing urban areas in Kentucky are the Bowling Green area and the "Tri Cities Region" of southeastern Kentucky, comprised of Somerset, London, and Corbin.

Although only one town in the "Tri Cities", namely Somerset, currently has more than 10,000 people, the area has been experiencing heightened population and job growth since the 1990s. Growth has been especially rapid in Laurel County, which outgrew areas such as Scott and Jessamine counties around Lexington or Shelby and Nelson Counties around Louisville. London is currently on pace to double its population in the 2000s from 5,692 in 2000 to 10,879 in 2010. London also landed a Wal-Mart distribution center in 1997, bringing thousands of jobs to the community.

In northeast Kentucky, the greater Ashland area is an important transportation and manufacturing center. Iron and petroleum production, as well as the transport of coal by rail and barge, have been historical pillars of the region's economy. Due to a decline in the area's industrial base, Ashland has seen a sizable reduction in its population since 1990. The population of the area has since stabilized, however, with the medical service industry taking a greater role in the local economy. The Ashland area, including the Kentucky counties of Boyd and Greenup, is a part of the Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH, Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). As of the 2000 census, the MSA had a population of 288,649. About 20,000 of those people reside within the city limits of Ashland.

Population growth is centered along and between interstates I-65 and I-75.
Main article: Education in Kentucky


College Sports
See also: Kentucky Wildcats and Louisville Cardinals
U of L has dominated the football rivalry, winning 70% of the games in the Modern Series which began in 1994 UK has dominated the basketball rivalry, also winning 70% of games in the modern series which began in 1983As in many Southern states, especially those without major league professional sport teams, college athletics are very important. This is especially true of the state's two Division I-A programs, the Kentucky Wildcats and Louisville Cardinals, who have combined for nine NCAA Men's Basketball National Championships. (seven at UK, two at UofL).

A 2002 Sports Illustrated'poll found that 63% of Kentuckians are Kentucky Wildcats fans, while 16% are Louisville Cardinals fans. [2] However, in recent years the gap has closed considerably. A 2006 Lexington Herald article stated that interest in U of L sports is surging across the state of Kentucky, especially in Hopkinsville and Owensboro. [3] An October 21, 2006 Louisville Courier Journal article also stated that the total sales of U of L merchandise has tripled since 2001 and that the school now ranks 32nd nationally in sales, up from 41st in 2001. U of L ranks 2nd in the Big East Conference and the 3rd Highest among all urban universities (to Southern California and Miami) in merchandise sales. [[4]]

UK's merchandise sales have steadily remained around 14th in the nation, by far the best in the state.

U of L now has more registared collegate license plates than the University of Kentucky (18,300 to 17,000); a four fold increase since 2004. In 1995 UK had a 15,000 plate lead on U of L [5]

College Basketball: Eras of Dominance
UK: Rupp's Early Years The Kentucky Wildcats were the most dominate team in the early history of the NCAA Tournament. From 1942 to 1958 the Wildcats won five national titles, with an additional Final Four in 1949.

U of L: The Team of the 1980s The Louisville Cardinals were dubbed "The Team of the 1980's", winning two national titles (equaled only by Indiana), being the only team to go to four Final Fours, and having more wins than in other team during the decade. Darrell Griffith won the John Wooden Award in 1980 and in 1986 "Nervous" Pervis Ellison became the first freshman to ever be named NCAA Final Four MVP, a feat only equalled by Syracuse's Carmelo Anthony.

UK: The Team of the 1990s The Kentucky Wildcats were the most dominate team of the 1990's, winning two national titles, with three straight trips to the NCAA Championship game and four total trips to the Final Four. UK's 1996 team National Championship team is considered one of the best NCAA teams of all time, as evidenced by the nine players on the roster which played in the NBA.

In 2004, UK played Michigan State in the Basketbowl, the game that set the all time record for attendance at a basketball game.

Team All Time Record All Time Wins Rank All Time Winning Percent Winning Percent Rank National Titles Final Fours NCAA Tourney Appearances NCAA Tourney Wins NCAA Tourney Wins Rank
Kentucky Wildcats 1,926-596 1 76.3% 1 7 13 46 96 1
Louisville Cardinals 1,505-806 15 65.1% 12 2 8 32 53 7

UK Championships U of L Championships UK Final Fours U of L Final Fours
1942 1942
1948 1948
1951 1951
1958 1958
1978 1978
1980 1980
1986 1986
1996 1996
1998 1998

Professional sports teams
The Purple People Bridge between Newport and Cincinnati, Ohio.Kentucky is home to no major league sports team but several minor league teams. However, the northern part of the state lies across the Ohio River from Cincinnati, Ohio, which is home to a National Football League team, the Bengals, and a Major League Baseball team, the Reds. It is not uncommon for fans to park in the city of Newport, Kentucky, and use the Newport Southbank Pedestrian Bridge, locally known as the "Purple People Bridge" , to walk to these games in Cincinnati. Many restaurants and stores in Newport rely on business from these fans. Also, Georgetown College in Georgetown is the location for the Bengals' summer training camp.

The state is home to several minor league sports teams. The Louisville Bats of the International League are the AAA affiliate of the Reds. The Lexington Legends are a Class A minor league baseball team affiliated with the Houston Astros in the South Atlantic League.

Minor league baseball
Louisville Bats (Triple-A International League affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds)
Lexington Legends (Single-A South Atlantic League affiliate of the Houston Astros)
Florence Freedom (Single-A Frontier League independent)

Lexington Horsemen (United Indoor Football)
Louisville Fire (arenafootball2)
Louisville Bulls (Mid Continental Football League)

Kentucky Colonels (American Basketball Association)

Auto racing
NASCAR Busch Series race team Brewco Motorsports, based in Central City

Miscellaneous topics

Main article: Cuisine of Kentucky
While Kentucky's pastimes are distinctly those of the South, the state's cuisine is considered to be a synergistic blend of Midwestern cuisine and Southern US cuisine. One original Kentucky dish is called the Hot Brown. It is a layered dish normally in this order: bread, tomatoes, ham, bacon, and topped with melted cheese. It was developed at the Brown Hotel in Louisville.

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Origin of name
According to The Kentucky Encyclopedia, the origin of Kentucky's name has never been definitively identified. Some possibilities include:

a Wyandot name meaning "land of tomorrow"
an Iroquoian name meaning "place of meadows"
an Algonquian term for a river bottom
a Shawnee term for the head of a river
Some theories have been debunked. Kentucky's name does not come from the combination of "cane" and "turkey," nor does it come from a Native American phrase for "dark and bloody ground."

The name Kentucky referred originally to the Kentucky River and from that came the name of the region.

State symbols
See also: Flag of Kentucky
2001 commemorative quarterState bird: Kentucky Cardinal
State flower: Goldenrod
State tree: Tulip Poplar (formerly the Kentucky coffeetree)
State horse: Thoroughbred
State fish: Kentucky Bass
State fruit: Blackberry
State wild animal: Gray Squirrel
State butterfly: Viceroy Butterfly
State gemstone: Freshwater Pearl
State fossil: Brachiopod
State song: "My Old Kentucky Home" by Stephen Collins Foster (1853)
State bluegrass song: "Blue Moon of Kentucky" by Bill Monroe (1947)
State drink: Milk
State honey festival: Clarkson Honeyfest
State motto: "United We Stand, Divided We Fall"
State slogan: "Unbridled Spirit"
State dance: Clogging
State rock: Kentucky Agate
State soil: Crider soil series
State mineral: Coal
State arboretum: Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest
State botanical garden: University of Kentucky-Fayette County Arboretum
State Science Center: Louisville Science Center
State musical instrument: Appalachian dulcimer
State theatre pipe organ: Kentucky Theatre's Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Pipe Organ
State Latin motto: "Deo gratiam habeamus"
State outdoor musical: "Stephen Foster -- The Musical"
State center for celebration of African American heritage: Kentucky Center for African American Heritage

Notable Natives
See also: List of famous Kentuckians
Both the president of the Union (Abraham Lincoln) and the Confederacy (Jefferson Davis) during the Civil War were born in Kentucky.
Kentuckian Franklin Sousley is one of six soldiers in the picture "Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima"
Garrett Morgan, born to former slaves in Paris, Kentucky, developed a concept of the gas mask and patented a type of traffic signal.
Famed wildlife artist John James Audubon, who operated a general store in Louisville for about two years, spent much of his career painting in Henderson.
Paris, Kentucky native George Snyder is credited as inventing the first modern bait casting fishing reel.
Tony Snow, the White House Press Secretary, was born in Berea, Kentucky.

Interesting facts about Kentucky
The Old Louisville neighborhood is the largest Victorian Historic neighborhood in the USThe University of Louisville School of Medicine has been part of a number of notable firsts:
The first hosptial with a trauma care center, today known as an Emergency Room
The first emergency vehicles equipped with medical supplies and trained nurses, today known as an Ambulance
The first established blood bank in the United States
Developed the Pap Smear test for HPV
Developed the first HPV Vaccine
Did the first Hand transplant in the US
Did the first wireless Artificial Heart Transplant in the world
The Purple People Bridge connecting Newport and Cincinnati is the longest pedestrian-only bridge in the world. In 2007, the Big Four Bridge in Louisville will be converted into the world's second longest pedestrian only bridge, meaning Kentucky will be home to the two longest pedestrian only bridges in the world and the only two in the United States connecting two states.
The Old Louisville neighborhood is the largest historic preservation district in the U.S. featuring Victorian architecture and the third largest overall. The neighborhood was also home to the Southern Exposition (1883-1887), which featured the first public display of Thomas Edison's light bulb. It was also the setting of Alice Hegan Rice's "The Cabbage Patch" novel
The largest outdoor art show in the US is the St. James Court Art Show, which is held annually in Old Louisville and draws more than 300,000 people.
Lexington, Kentucky ranks 10th among US cities in percent college educated [6]
The roll-top desk was invented in Henderson by the original owners of Alles Brothers Furniture.
The first public library open to African Americans in the United States was the Western Branch of the Louisville Free Public Library.
The Song "Happy Birthday" was written by three Louisville sisters
Rainey Bethea was the last condemned prisoner to be publicly executed in the United States. The sentence was carried out on August 14, 1936 in front of an estimated 20,000 spectators in Owensboro.
Bourbon whiskey was first produced in Kentucky, purportedly by Baptist minister Elijah Craig.
Mother's Day was originally celebrated in Henderson.
The World Peace Bell, located in Newport, is the largest free-swinging bell in existence.
Several U.S. Navy ships have been named USS Kentucky in honor of the state. The USS Paducah and USS Louisville also served as naval vessels. Also, in honor of their massive and record-breaking contributions to scrap drives in World War II, the small town of Stearns got a ship named after itself.
William Goebel became the only governor of a U.S. state to be assassinated when he was shot by a sniper as he walked to the State Capitol in Frankfort.
Kentucky ranks 4th among U.S. states in the number of automobiles and trucks assembled. The Chevrolet Corvette, Ford Expedition, Ford Explorer, all Ford F-series trucks, and the Toyota Camry are all assembled in Kentucky.
The Eastern Kentucky Coal Fields are recognized as being one of the most productive in the nation.
Eastern Kentucky is famously known for the Hatfield-McCoy feud. A major trail spans the historical sites of the feud through West Virginia and Kentucky.
Kentucky is not actually a continuous state. There is a small tract of land just south of New Madrid, Missouri that is Kentucky land, yet is completely isolated from the rest of Kentucky. It is bordered by Missouri to the West, East, and North and Tennessee to the South. Map


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