Let me introduce you to my town! Harrodsburg, located in Mercer County, was laid out June 16, 1774, by Captain James Harrod and his band of men. It was first called Harrodstown, then Oldtown, and finally Harrodsburg. In the very early years there were Indian attacks, and many settlers were killed. But the rich and fertile land of the Bluegrass area was too profitable to give up. As more and more families moved to Mercer County, and the Indians gave way to Ohio and Indiana, life became more peaceful.
In the 130 years since the site was laid out, and this picture was taken, there is no comparison to the log fort and this photo from 1904. Fort Harrod, and the cabins within, fell into disuse and decay. This is a photo of a bustling little town! Power lines dominate the picture, large buildings, churches, horse and buggies, men and women on the streets – with no worry of Indian attacks! Progress was here.
And if we go an additional 113 years forward to today, we see a modern, small town, but with a few signs from the first photo. The brick building on the right side of the street, in the middle of the photo, is still standing. For many years it was used as the home for the County Clerk’s Office. Directly across the street is the courthouse, which cannot be seen in either photo. A new courthouse was built a few years ago, and the county offices were moved to a building on Lexington Avenue.
The yellow house is still there, with a bit of renovation. In the original photo the Christian Church stands beside it. The church, which has been rebuilt, is hidden by the tree, but can be see in the above photograph.
I wanted to show you a close up of the old photo. You will have to imagine that the first two buildings on the right (the church and store front) are now the large Christian Church from the modern photo. The brick building begins with what was the County Clerk’s Office.
Past the building that housed the clerk’s office is The Kentucky Fudge Company – one of our favorite places to eat! Studio G is next, with local music and talent. Several other businesses are located down the street. The building at the end – blue, with a turret – is the office of Dr. Tammy Hoskins, my optometrist. You can see this building in the original photo!
Power lines are now underground, giving a nice, neat Main Street appearance. I love small towns – and I especially love living in one! Come visit – I’ll show you the replica of Fort Harrod, with the huge Osage orange tree in front, that has been the center of many school photos. We’ll visit The Kentucky Fudge Company for lunch. The Harrodsburg Historical Society on Chiles Street is a must for genealogy research. There are many old cemeteries to visit. And Shaker Village is just a few miles away – they serve a lovely dinner.
Categories: Genealogy Ramblings