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Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Crab Orchard

Main Street Crab Orchard

 Sunday morning traffic -  Amish Buggies 

Historic home on Main St. 

"William Moor enters 400 acres by virtue of certificate on waters of Dicks River and known by the name of the Crab Orchard. Lincoln County Entry 33 12/23/1779. " At this date Kentucky has not become a state yet. In fact, it is still part of the Kentucky County of Virginia. In 1780 it will be divided into what will be known as the three original counties of Kentucky, Lincoln, Fayette and Jefferson encompassing the known Commonwealth.  In 1792 Kentucky becomes the 15th State. So you can see that the little town of Crab Orchard is one of the tap roots of Kentucky. 

  A month, or so ago, I received a letter from my bank in Crab Orchard notifying me that it was closing. Monday there was only drive through service. On the 31st of August 2011, the bank will close entirely. It is the only bank in town. Patrons will have other options at local banks in Stanford and Lancaster. It is definitely a sign of the times. Crab Orchard, although a richly historical town has been bypassed by the new Highway 150 and most of those who speed past will not imagine the little town's history, as I do. 

This is Daniel Boone country folks! Fort Boonesborough was attacked by Indians in April of 1777. Daniel wrote that in October of the same year, a party [of Indians] made an excursion into the district called the Crab Orchard. From this account we know there were settlers in the area that early. 

Just a few miles from town is Col. William Whitley's brick home which was built in 1782 and the William Whitley State Park. Whitley County Kentucky is named for him. 

Lincoln Entry#4648 Samuel Davis settlement from William Moore called the Crab Orchard, 1788.

Crab Orchard is on that branch of the Wilderness Trail that travelers trod to the Falls of the Ohio, now known as  the city of Louisville, Kentucky.  The first fork of the trail was at Hazel Patch in present Laurel County, which led settlers to Boonesborough. Settlers could also depart for Fort Boonesborough from Crab Orchard. 

  It's not only a historical town, it is one of my genealogical towns, a part of my family history.  I've been sending mail, or receiving mail from Crab Orchard, Kentucky for many years. I even had a Crab Orchard address myself back in the 1980's. My parents have a Crab Orchard address. My Blevins grandparents had a Crab Orchard rural route number, and box number.   That was before the zip code, the 911 addressing system and black-topped roads,  for those of you attached to an Ipad. Letters from great grandparents were post marked Crab Orchard.

So I'm a little hurt and sad that the bank is closing it's doors and pulling out of Crab Orchard, Kentucky.  I suppose it's a sign of the economical times. This town has seen a lot of folks come and go, through good times and bad.  I think that the people of Crab Orchard have been, and will continue to be the stalwart, staying sort and that the town will thrive. 

"Welcome to Crab Orchard"


  1. My 5th Great Grandparents, James and Sally (McCord) Campbell, were at Crab Orchard when attacked by Indians. She described the incident in her Declaration for a widow's pension for her husband's Revolutionary War service:

    "...she was married during his services in the Indian Wars and was with him herself in an engagement with the Indians near the Crab Orchard in the State of Kentucky in the year seventeen hundred and [--blank--] in which engagement my husband the said James Campbell had the lock of his gun and his thumb shot off with a ball from the Indians, and at the same time her brother, William McCord, was shot through the arm and one of her aunts was killed and another taken prisoner and remained as such for three years...."

    James and Sally later moved to, lived and died in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky. Sally's mother, Ann (McCord) Shipley, by the way, was an aunt of Abraham Lincoln's mother, Nancy (Hanks) Lincoln.

  2. My entire family is from Crab Orchard, Stanford, and Lancaster. My Great Great Grandma is one of the Indians from that era who married a white man shortly after the war. We are the Todd's,and the Foley's

    1. My mother was Dorothy Marie Todd born in 1928, Crab Orchard KY

  3. My mom grew up in Rockcastle co til the age of 14. she lived on Crooked Creek Rd. can anyone tell me what school she attended.

  4. My mom grew up in Rockcastle co til the age of 14. she lived on Crooked Creek Rd. can anyone tell me what school she attended.

  5. Hi my name is Jackie my grandfather Jack N Lasure is from Crab Orchard his mother was Mary Elizabeth Lasure he lived at 619 Elm Street I went for a visit in 1968 i was 2 years old then he came to Brooklyn for my aunts wedding in 1972 i would love to visit Crab Orchard again i do remember the Post Office

  6. My Grandmother was born in Boone's Fort as told to us... and moved from Crab Orchard Ky. to Arizona early 20th century... Their last name is White... are there any family still there?

  7. Jena, Fort Boonesborough was built in 1775. If your family moved from Kentucky to Arizona in the 20th Century that's about 200 years of genealogical history that's missing from your account. If you would like some help in filling in the gaps of your family history, please contact me.

  8. Glad to have found this post. Thank you for sharing this information. I'm scouting for Boren (sometimes Boring) and Greenwood who were in this area by at least 1798. Greenwood had come from Delaware after the Revolution. Intermarried with Eden, Evans, Wood, Anderson, Sherrill, Loy, Clampet. Hoping to meet others interested in these names.