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Kentucky State Guide

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Kentucky is also referred as the “Commonwealth of Kentucky” is the eastern south-central state of the United States. Kentucky along with Virginia, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania are constituted as the commonwealth of the United States. Kentucky became the 15th state of the United States on June 1, 1792 [1]. Kentucky is also nicknamed as the "Bluegrass State" because of the abundance of bluegrass in the state's many pastures. The central Kentucky's Bluegrass Region is one of the significant regions in the state that encompasses 2 cities, namely Lexington and Louisville.


Kentucky Fast Facts:

  • Capital city: Frankfort
  • Largest city: Louisville
  • Sate Bird: Cardinal
  • State Tree: Tulip Poplar
  • State Flower: Goldenrod
  • State Song: "My Old Kentucky Home"
  • State Soil: Crider soil series
  • State Dance: Clogging
  • State Music: Bluegrass music

flowerbirdFlag tree

History of Kentucky


Kentucky was home to many varied cultures and tribes of Native Americans many thousand years ago, prior to European explorers arrived. In the mid 18th century, European explorers entered the state and settled. The Ohio River valley is dominated by the Iroquois. The Shawnee and the Cherokee also roamed around the region for hunting. The present day Kentucky has 2 state recognized tribes, namely the Ridgetop Shawnee and the Southern Cherokee Nation of Kentucky.

Virginia's counties beyond the Appalachian Mountains were termed as the Kentucky County in 1776. Kentucky was included as the 15th state in the Union of the United States on June1, 1792. On June 18, 1812, the war of 1812 against England was declared by the United States Congress.

tribes


In the 19th century, the state's slave owners increased with the most concentrated in the bluegrass region. Slaves were sold to the Deep South and Louisville became a hub for slave market and gateway for slaves transportation. Kentucky was officially neutral during the American Civil War because of the Union sympathies of a large population of the citizens of Commonwealth.

In the 20th century, the Black Patch Tobacco Wars took place. The war resulted due to the tobacco industry monopoly in which the state's tobacco farmers were forcefully made to sell their tobacco at very minimal prices. The local farmers with the support of many activists revolted against this monopoly decision. Kentucky suffered much difficulty in the 1920s Great Depression. The state's economy suffered huge blow with the widespread unemployment. Later, the state revived and manifested improvements in the educational system and also the construction of Kentucky Dam with its hydroelectric power plant had brought in many changes and improvements to the people of western Kentucky.

Kentucky Timeline History

  • 1750 - Thomas Walker exploresd Kentucky.

  • 1763 - France surrendered areas including Kentucky to Britain.

  • 1792 - Kentucky became the 15th state to joine the Union on June 1, 1792.

  • 1819 - The first commercial oil well was established on the Cumberland River in McCreary County.

  • 1861 - Kentucky declared its neutrality in American Civil War.

  • 1891 - Adopted the present state constitution.

  • 1921 - A law was passed that legally allow women to serve on juries.

  • 1936 - The last .legal public hanging in Kentucky.

  • 1950 - Built atomic energy plant near Paducah.

  • 1988 - Voters agrred to start state lottery.

  • 2006 - Comair flight crashed near Lexington and killed 49 people.

Geography of Kentucky


Kentucky Geography Quick Facts:

Total Area: 40,409 sq mi (104,659 km2)
Longitude: 81o 58′ W to 89o34′ W
Latitude: 36o  30′ N to 39o 09′ N
Highest point: Black Mountain 4,145 ft (1263 m)
Mean point: 750 ft (230 m)
Lowest point: Mississippi River at Kentucky Bend 257 ft (78 m)
Area Under Forest: 48%
Time Zone Mountain: - eastern half: Eastern: UTC −5/−4
- western half: Central: UTC −6/−5
Kentucky is covers a total an area of 39,486.34 square mile [2] and is located in the eastern south central part of the nation. The state is bordered by the Ohio River in its northern border and by the Mississippi River in its western border. There are 7 neighboring states that border Kentucky. To the eastern part lies West Virginia, to the south-eastern lies Virginia, to the south lies Tennessee, to the west lies Missouri, to the north-western region lies Illinois and Indiana and to the northeast and north lies Ohio. Frankfurt is the capital city and Louisville is the largest city of the state. Tennessee and Missouri.


Topography of Kentucky


Kentucky may be geographically divided into 5 primary regions, namelyplateau

  • The Cumberland Plateau in the east
  • The north-central Bluegrass region
  • The south-central and western Pennyroyal Plateau (also known as The Pennyrile or Mississippi Plateau)
  • The Western Coal Fields
  • The far-west Jackson Purchase

Cumberland Plateau


The Cumberland Plateau lies in Kentucky's eastern portion and encompasses the areas of the Appalachian Plateau that stretch from New York to Alabama. The region is made up of plateaus, mountains and valleys and also included the state's highest point, Black Mountain.


Bluegrass Region


The Bluegrass Region is located in the northern central part of the state. The region in Kentucky is surrounded by the Ohio River on the north and west.

The Bluegrass Region is classified into 2 regions, namely-


  • The Inner Bluegrass - areas around Lexington comprising of rolling meadows with several horse farms

  • The Outer Bluegrass - the region that contains most of the northern portion of the state, featuring sandstone knobs and comprises of steep, short and narrow hills

Pennyroyal Region

The Pennyroyal Region extends till the state's southern border starting from the western part of Appalachian Plateau to Kentucky Lake. The region's southern portion comprises of flat lands along with few rolling hills and the northern area is made up of rocky ridges. The Barrens is a treeless area that lies in the center of the Pennyroyal region. There are tunnels and underground caves found in the region.


Western Coal Field

North-western Kentucky is known as the Western Coal Field and comprises of many hills and is surrounded to the north by the Ohio River and on the south, east, and west by the Pennyroyal region. The region has its name the “Western Coal Field" given due to the abundant availability of coal deposits.


Jackson Purchase Region


The Jackson Purchase Region is located in the state's extreme western end and also included some area of greater Gulf Plains Region. The region is surrounded by Kentucky Lake on the east; by the Ohio River to the north; by the Mississippi River to the west. The area also features flood plains with low hills.

The Eastern Kentucky Coalfield is known for its rugged terrain. Kentucky Bend, a non-contiguous region lies at the state's farthest western corner. The region is geographically separated from the mainland areas and is completely bordered by

The climate in Kentucky is humid subtropical climate. Temperatures are comparatively lower in Kentucky's southern and lowland regions as compared to the uplands. The weather condition in Kentucky is best described as terrain sensitive.

Forests in Kentucky


The Kentucky Division of Forestry manages and owns ten state forests. The forests in Connecticut cover around 48% of its land area and 88% of the forests are privately owned. Kentucky is among the nation's most heavily forested states. The forest and its multiple resources are important for the economic growth of the state. Additionally, apart from being a home to varied flora and fauna, forests enhance the people's quality of life by clearing the pollutants and providing cleaner, clearer air to breathe in and also preserve drinking water resources. The Department of Natural Resources manages and maintain the state’s forests and the resources. Kentucky is home to one of the most diverse hardwood species mix in the country. Red maple is the most abundant individual tree species found in the state forests.

Given below are Kentucky's state forest-

Big Rivers Wildlife Management Area and State Forest: It is located in Union County. The various recreational activities it provides are hunting, hiking, fishing, wildlife viewing and canoeing.

Green River State Forest: It is located in Henderson County

Kentenia State Forest: It is located in Harlan County around along the south side of Pine Mountain.

Kentucky Ridge State Forest: It is located in Bell County.

Knobs State Forest and Wildlife Management Area: It is located in Bullitt County.

Marion County Wildlife Management Area and State Forest: It is located in Marion County.

Marrowbone State Forest and Wildlife Management Area: It is located in Metcalfe and Cumberland counties.

Pennyrile State Forest: It is located in Christian County.forests

Rolleigh Peterson Educational Forest: It is located in eastern Jefferson County.

Tygarts State Forest: It is located in Carter County.

Contact Division of Forestry
l 627 Comanche Trail l
Frankfort, KY 40601
Telephone: 502-564-4496
Fax: l 502-564-6553
Website: http://forestry.ky.gov/Kentuckysstateforests/Pages/default.aspx

Government of Kentucky


The Government of Kentucky is guarded and established by the Kentucky Constitution. Kentucky became a 15th state of the United States on June 1, 1792. The state is also referred as the “Commonwealth”. The government of Kentucky is divided into three distinct branches, namely the Executive branch, the Legislative branch and the Judicial branch. All state officials in Kentucky are appointed in odd numbered years unlike the majority of the other states of the United States, which elect their officials in even numbered years.

The Kentucky Executive Branch is a well functioning body of the government of Kentucky and several state government departments work under the executive branch. The Governor of Kentucky leads the government as well as the state as the chief executive head. Kentucky legislative branch is a bicameral body which is called the Kentucky General Assembly. The general assembly is divided into two separate bodies, namely Kentucky Senate and House of Representatives.

Under the Kentucky Constitution, the Judiciary branch applies and interprets laws and regulations to ensure justice in the state. The judicial branch of Kentucky is also known as the Kentucky Court of Justice. The judicial system of Kentucky is served by numerous efficient professionally trained judges. Chief Justice of the Commonwealth heads the Kentucky Court of Justice.

Learn more: Government of Kentucky

Demographics of Kentucky


The population of Kentucky as of 2014 estimation by the U.S. Census Bureau was 4,413,457. The 2014 census reflected a hike of 1.7% since the year 2010. As of 2010, the population density of the state is 109.9 persons per square mile. The major portions of Kentucky's southern and western regions are the most affluent and populated parts of the state. Kentucky's center of population is situated in Washington County, in the Willisburg city [3]

Connecticut population quick facts according to the Census Bureau [3]

  • Population, 2014: 4,413,457
  • Population, 2013: 4,399,583
  • Population, percent change, April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014:1.7%
  • Persons under 5 years, percent, 2013: 6.3%
  • Persons under 18 years, percent, 2013: 23.1%
  • Persons 65 years and over, percent, 2013:14.4%
  • Female persons, percent, 2013: 50.8%

Connecticut Racial groups, 2013 [3]

  • White alone:88.5%
  • Black or African American alone:8.2%
  • American Indian and Alaska Native alone: 0.3%
  • Asian alone:1.3%
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone: 0.1%
  • Two or More Races:1.7%
  • Hispanic or Latino:3.3%
  • White alone, not Hispanic or Latino: 85.6%

The major religious groups in the state are –

  • Evangelical Protestant churches
  • Southern Baptist Convention
  • Catholic Church
  • United Methodist Church
  • Theologies

Economy of Kentucky


Kentucky's economy has shown good progress, especially in sectors such as energy fuel production, auto manufacturing and medical facilities. The nation's large coal fields and the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant's enriched uranium rods are hugely supporting certain percentage of electricity produced in the United States. In automobiles and trucks assembly, the state has been ranked 4th in the United States.

economy


Economy Fast Facts: [4]

  • Gross domestic product (GDP) in millions of current dollars of all industry total in 2013 - $ 183,373

  • Kentucky Per capita real GDP in 2013 - $ 170,667

  • Kentucky Per capita personal income in 2010 - $28,51

  • Kentucky’s Unemployment rate, 2015 - 5.2% [5]

Agriculture in Kentuckyagriculture

  • The top 5 agricultural products based on revenue generated include horses/mules, cattle and calves, broilers, soybeans and tobacco.

  • Kentucky's most important crops are tobacco, corn for grain, soybeans and wheat.

  • The major vegetable crops produced are tomatoes.

  • Apple is the major fruit produced in the state.

  • Almost nearly 66% of the state's agricultural income is incurred from livestock and its products.

  • The state's major livestock product are beef cattle and thoroughbred horses.

  • Other important livestock products include broilers (young chickens), eggs, milk and hogs.

Industry in Kentucky

  • Leading service industries in Kentucky include business, community and personal services; and wholesale and retail trade industries. Ranked 3rd in the state's services sector is the Government services.

  • In manufacturing sector, the production of transportation equipments, including aircraft parts, railroad cars and boat trailers are the most significant in the state.

  • The production of chemicals ranked 2nd and production of machinery ranked 3rd in the state's manufacturing sector.

  • Coal is produced in abundance in Kentucky's coal fields and is among the nation's leading coal producer.

  • Natural gas, limestone and petroleum are other valuable mined products in Kentucky.

Tourism in Kentucky


Tourism is also a principal part of Kentucky’s economy and is one of the largest employers of the state. Many plans and programs are implemented to improve Kentucky’s transportation network and accordingly enhance the tourism sector.

Some of the major tourist attractions in Kentucky include-psark

Transportation in Kentucky


The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is efficiently working to offer a convenient, effective and safe multimodal transportation network and also to provide easy connectivity of people and goods to many destinations and markets across Kentucky and worldwide. The Cabinet manages and maintains numerous lane-miles of roadways, bridges, tunnels, rails and also responsible for air and water quality, communities and roadsides cleanliness.

The road transportation in Kentucky comprises of several interstate highways, state routes, bridges and tunnels. The Commonwealth has 6 major interstate highways; 4 bypasses and spurs (I-265, I-264, I-471 and I-275); and 9 parkways.

The rail transportation is also one of the main transportation modes in Kentucky that serves people from all walks of life and also important for cargo transfer. The Commonwealth encompasses many miles of railways and more than half of these are operated by CSX Transportation, which is a Class I railroad in the U.S. The main passenger rail service in the state is provided by Amtrak.

Air transport is an essential gateway of Kentucky that serves the locals and tourists from all over the world. It is the major mode that offers all round efficient and easy connectivity. The Federal Aviation Administration authorizes and oversees all flight operations in Kentucky.

Learn more: Transportation in Kentucky

Kentucky Health Care


The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) works efficiently to improve the health and living standards of the community by implementing many health regulating services and policies. The department also encompasses a division which provides all vital records and health statistics of the state.

Donate Life Kentucky is the state-authorized non-profit organization that is committed to provide and manage the organ, eye and tissue donations to the people in need and help save as many lives as possible. Kentucky’s Healthcare Connection, kynect is the official one stop shopping portal for quality health insurance and coverage.

Learn more:
Kentucky Health Care

Education in Kentucky


Education system in Kentucky comprises of elementary school, middle school, high school and and post secondary institutions. Kentucky encompasses 8 public four-year universities. The state also has 2 major research institutions, namely the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville. Both these universities are recognized of having the highest admissions standards and academic rankings. Transylvania University is the oldest university in Kentucky. The majority of the schools and colleges in Kentucky are accredited via the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). The Kentucky Board of Education has the duty and responsibility to ensure the development, implementation and coordination of K-12 education in each of the school districts in the commonwealth.

Kentucky’s public Universities are-linkeducation

Interesting Facts about Kentucky

  • "My Old Kentucky Home" is the official state song.

  • Crider soil series is the official state soil.

  • Coal is the official state mineral.

  • "United we stand, divided we fall" is the official state motto and slogan.

  • Freshwater pearl is the official state gemstone.

  • Blackberry is the official state fruit.

  • Brachiopod is the official state fossil.

  • Milk is the official state beverage.

  • The Hot Brown is an original dish of Kentucky. The dish was first made in Loiusville at the Brown Hotel and is prepared in layers following an order of toasted bread, turkey, bacon, tomatoes and topped with mornay sauce.

  • The Kentucky Derby is the oldest continuously held horse race in the United States.

  • Colonel Sanders first owned and operated Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Corbin.

  • The all time famous song "Happy Birthday to You" was created by two Louisville sisters.

  • Kentucky has a southern influenced culture. Some areas of Kentucky are also influenced by the Southern Appalachia and Midwest. Kentucky is well known for whiskey and bourbon distilling, horse racing, tobacco, college basketball.



References:


  1. Kentucky Statehood
  2. Kentucky Land Area
  3. Kentucky Demographics
  4. Kentucky Economy Fast Facts
  5. Kentucky Unemployment Rate

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