Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Elizabethtown, Kentucky
settlement_type = City
nickname =
motto =

imagesize =
image_caption =


mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location of Elizabethtown, Kentucky

mapsize1 =
map_caption1 =

subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = United States
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_name1 = Kentucky
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name2 = Hardin
government_footnotes =
government_type =
leader_title =
leader_name =
leader_title1 =
leader_name1 =
established_title =
established_date =

area_footnotes =
area_magnitude =
area_total_km2 = 63.1
area_land_km2 = 62.3
area_water_km2 = 0.8
area_total_sq_mi = 24.4
area_land_sq_mi = 24.1
area_water_sq_mi = 0.3

population_as_of = 2008
population_footnotes =
population_total = 25942
population_density_km2 = 361.6
population_density_sq_mi = 936.6

timezone = Eastern (EST)
utc_offset = -5
timezone_DST = EDT
utc_offset_DST = -4
elevation_footnotes =
elevation_m = 221
elevation_ft = 725
latd = 37 |latm = 42 |lats = 10 |latNS = N
longd = 85 |longm = 51 |longs = 58 |longEW = W

postal_code_type = ZIP codes
postal_code = 42701-42702
area_code = 270
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 21-24274
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 0491640
website =
footnotes =

Elizabethtown is a city in Hardin County, Kentucky, United States. The population was 22,542 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Hardin CountyGR|6. It is the principal city of and is included in the Elizabethtown, Kentucky Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Louisville–Jefferson County–Elizabethtown–Scottsburg, KY-IN Combined Statistical Area.


Elizabethtown is located at coor dms|37|42|10|N|85|51|58|W|city (37.702674, −85.866173)GR|1.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 63.1 km² (24.4 mi²). 62.3 km² (24.1 mi²) of it is land and 0.8 km² (0.3 mi²) of it (1.27%) is water.

On the list (by population) of all metropolitan statistical areas as defined by the United States Census Bureau, Elizabethtown has a population of 22,542. Population estimates are current as of July 1, 2004. Metropolitan statistical area names are current as of December 1, 2005. Elizabethtown metropolitan area includes the unincorporated town of Rineyville, where Abraham Lincoln's school teacher lived.


Samuel Haycraft, Jr., in his "History of Elizabethtown", wrote in 1869: "For who can tell what Elizabethtown will be with her delightful location, her enterprising and energetic population, her railroad facilities, her fine water, and her surroundings of intelligent and gentlemanly farmers, the best fruit country in the world, and her future manufactories that must spring up, and when it becomes a large city it will be well to look back upon her starting point."

Founded in July 1797, Elizabethtown is the Hardin County seat. In 1779, three early settlers, Capt. Thomas Helm, Col. Andrew Hynes, and Col. Samuel Haycraft, built forts with blockhouses to use as stockades for defense against Native Americans. The forts, being one mile apart, formed a triangle. At the time, there were no other settlements between the Ohio River and the Green River. Soon, however, other people came and settled around these forts.

Hardin County was established in 1793 and named for Colonel John Hardin, an Indian fighter who had been killed by Native Americans while on a peace mission with tribes in Ohio. It did not take long for the settlement to become an active community. In just a few years, professional men and tradesmen came to live in the area. In 1793, Colonel Hynes had thirty acres of land surveyed and laid off into lots and streets to establish Elizabethtown. Named in honor of the wife of Andrew Hynes, Elizabethtown was legally established on July 4, 1797.

Thomas Lincoln was a resident of Hardin County and helped Samuel Haycraft build a millrace at Haycraft's mill on Valley Creek. He married Nancy Hanks in 1806 and they lived in a log cabin built in Elizabethtown. Their daughter, Sarah, was born there in 1808. Soon after, they moved to the Sinking Spring Farm where Abraham Lincoln was born. Thomas Lincoln took his family to Indiana in 1816. After his wife died in 1818, he came back to Elizabethtown and married Sarah Bush Johnston. Sarah had the privilege of rearing ten year-old Abraham.

On March 5, 1850 the Commonwealth of Kentucky granted a charter to the Louisville and Nashville Railroad Company authorizing it to raise funds and built a railroad from Louisville to the Tennessee state line in the direction of Nashville. John L. Helm, the grandson of Capt. Thomas Helm, became the president of the railroad in October 1854 and through his efforts, the main stem of the road was built through Elizabethtown. The road was completed to Elizabethtown in 1858, the first train arriving on June 15, 1858. The opening of the railroad brought growth and prosperity to Elizabethtown. The community became one of the most important stops along the railroad and a strategic point during the Civil War. Joshua Jewett (September 30, 1815 - July 14, 1861) was a United States Representative from Kentucky who lived in Elizabethtown.

On December 27 1862, General John Hunt Morgan and his 3,000-man cavalry attacked Elizabethtown. During the battle more than 100 cannon balls were fired into the town. Although he successfully captured Elizabethtown, his goal was to disrupt the railroad. He proceeded north along the route of the railroad burning trestles and destroying sections of the track. After the battle, one cannon ball was lodged in the side of a building on the Public Square. The building later burned in 1887 and when it was rebuilt the cannon ball was replaced in the side of the building, as close to its original impact as possible, where it remains in the present day.

From 1871 to 1873, the Seventh Cavalry and a battalion of the Fourth Infantry, led by General George Armstrong Custer, were stationed in Elizabethtown. The battalions were stationed in the community to suppress the Ku Klux Klan and Carpet Baggers and to break up illegal distilleries which began to flourish in the South after the Civil War. General Custer and his wife, Elizabeth, lived in a small cottage behind Aunt Beck Hill's boarding house, now known as the Brown-Pusey House.

Today Elizabethtown is still a growing community. With a population of over 20,000 persons, the community has a growing industrial and commercial economy. There are also many cultural and recreational opportunities in the area, including the summer concert series at Freeman Lake Park, organized sports, and the Heartland Festival. The City Seal, with the inscription "Elizabethtown, Strong and Growing Since 1779" still rings true today.


The town is regionally referred to as "E-town." It is notable as one of two larger towns (the other being Bowling Green) along I-65 between Louisville and Nashville. The movie "Elizabethtown" (2005) was named after the town, even though the majority of the movie was filmed in Versailles and Louisville because Elizabethtown has lost most of its historic buildings in recent years due to development and sprawl.

Despite its being in a "dry county" (Hardin County, Kentucky), alcoholic drink sales are allowed in restaurants seating at least 100 diners and deriving at least 70% of their total sales from food. The locals refer to this as being a "damp" or "moist" county.

Charles B. Middleton, who originated the character of Ming the Merciless in the Flash Gordon movie serials, is a famous native of Elizabethtown.


The city is served by the airport at Addington Field (EKX) and the Elizabethtown Airport Board is currently exploring options to bring commercial services back to the city.


As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 22,542 people, 9,306 households, and 6,123 families residing in the city. The population density was 361.6/km² (936.6/mi²). There were 10,043 housing units at an average density of 161.1/km² (417.3/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 86.04% White, 9.70% African American, 0.30% Native American, 1.89% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.56% from other races, and 1.46% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 1.79% of the population.

There were 9,306 households out of which 32.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.3% were married couples living together, 13.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.2% were non-traditional or mixed families. 30.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.89.

The age distribution was 24.9% under the age of 18, 9.0% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 21.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 91.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $35,823, and the median income for a family was $45,399. Males had a median income of $32,406 versus $23,709 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,442. About 8.5% of families and 10.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.6% of those under age 18 and 9.1% of those age 65 or over.

In 2000, Hardin County, Kentucky and Larue County, Kentucky were defined as the Elizabethtown, KY Metropolitan Statistical Area by the Bureau of the Census. It is part of the Louisville-Jefferson County-Elizabethtown-Scottsburg, KY-IN Combined Statistical Area.


Elizabethtown Independent Schools

*Elizabethtown High School
*T.K. Stone Middle School
*Morningside Elementary School
*Helmwood Heights Elementary School
*Valley View Educational Center

Overall, the Elizabethtown Independent School district ranks 15th in the state. The district is renowned for its long tradition of excellent academics. E.I.S. is also a member of the KY High Performing Districts' Alliance Project.

Hardin County Schools

The Hardin County Schools are another district that encompasses some of the city limits.
*Central Hardin High School
*John Hardin High School
*North Hardin High School
*Bluegrass Middle School
*East Hardin Middle School
*West Hardin Middle School
*James T. Alton Middle School
*Radcliff Middle School
*G.C. Burkhead Elementary School
*Heartland Elementary School
*Lincoln Trail Elementary School
*Meadowview Elementary School
*New Highland Elementary School
*Parkway Elementary School
*Woodland Elementary School

Private schools

*Saint James Roman Catholic School
*North Hardin Christian Academy
*Elizabethtown Christian Academy

Postsecondary education

Elizabethtown is home to Elizabethtown Community and Technical College, a member of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System.

ister city

Elizabethtown has one sister city, as designated by Sister Cities International:
*flagicon|Japan Kori, Fukushima, Japan

Notable natives and residents

*Philip Arnold, confidence trickster
*Cecil Collins, American football player
*Walter Huddleston, retired politican
*Keen Johnson, former Governor of Kentucky
*Charles B. Middleton, American stage and film actor
*Kenny Perry, American Professional Golfer
*Todd Perry (football player)
*Kelly Rutherford, American Actress
*Chris Todd, Auburn Tigers quarterback


External links

* [http://www.elizabethtownky.org/ City of Elizabethtown Official site]
* [http://www.elizabethtownky.org/ A Website featuring Elizabethtown]

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