Historical Wayne County

Monticello and Wayne County are two of the most interesting historical sites in south, central Kentucky. We hope this information inspires you to come, visit, and experience our rich heritage. Please feel welcome to stay and enjoy the warm hospitality of the people of Monticello and Wayne County.

Historical Facts:

On December 13, 1800, Wayne County was formed from Pulaski and Cumberland Counties.
This 43rd Kentucky county was named for General “Mad Anthony” Wayne,
a hero of the Revolutionary War,
(March 16, 1801). The county seat, Monticello, was named for the home of Thomas Jefferson.
Wayne County and Monticello has 7 sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places plus 1 pending:

(1.) Battle of Mill Springs Historic Areas at Mill Springs,
(2.) Mill Springs Mill off KY 90 at Mill Springs,
(3.) Monticello Historic Commercial District located at Main and Columbia Streets,
(4.) Hotel Breeding (Home of the Wayne County Historical Society) on North Main Street,
(5.) Fairchild House (Home of Fairchild’s Bed & Breakfast) on South Main Street,
(6.) Adkins – Hurt Mill,
(7.) West – Metcalfe House near Mill Springs,
(8.) and Wayne County High School (pending acceptance).

Historical Monticello

* The Wayne County Historical Society is located in the old Breeding Hotel. This hotel was constructed in 1939 by R. G. Breeding to replace the Ramsey Hotel. Now housed in this building is the Historical Society Museum and Genealogy Library.

* Located in the middle of the intersection of Main and Columbia Streets, one will find the Doughboy Memorial.”Doughboy” is the name given to WWI infantrymen. This statue was dedicated on April 8, 1923 to honor the 23 Wayne Countians who died in WWI.img_2632

* Located on South Main Street is the Fairchild House. This historical house was the first in Wayne County to have been built using an architect with plans. Housed in this building is the business of Fairchild’s Bed & Breakfast.

* Beside the Christian Church on Michigan Avenue is the“Raccoon” John Smith Cabin. This cabin, originally located in Horse Hollow, was home of Elder John Smith. John Smith established the original church in 1831.

* Behind the current Historical Library and Museum is the Three R’s Museum and One Room Schoolhouse. Oak Grove School was moved here to become a museum. Retired teachers established this museum and was opened in 1986.


Historical Wayne County

* One of the best kept secrets in this area of the United States is Mill Springs Park.The first mill at this site was built in 1817 and replaced in 1877 by Lloyd Lanier. The Battle of Mill Springs was fought in this vicinity.


At the Mill Springs battlefield, the most historic spot in the Lake Cumberland region, nearly 150 men lost their lives on January 19, 1862.

*Across from the entrance of Mill Springs Park is Dunagan’s Country Store. This store founded by James E. Dunagan used to house the Mill Springs Post Office. This store is currently open for business on select days.

* Near the entrance of Mill Springs Park is the Brown-Lanier House. This impressive house was built by Thompson Brown and then sold to Lloyd A. Lanier, a riverboat pilot. The Brown-Lanier House was used as a field hospital after the battle of Mill Springs.

* The West-Metcalfe House, the oldest brick house in the region, was built by Isaac West, a revolutionary soldier. This house was used as a Confederate hospital and a nearby cemetery has Confederate graves.

A barn located near Dunagan’s Store.

Wayne County Historical Society
P. O. Box 320
Monticello, KY 42633
Located at 65 N. Main Street
William Crenshaw Kennedy, Jr.
Memorial Museum
Web site: www.waynecountymuseum.com