Folks in Meade County share a rich history, and it’s something we take a lot of pride in. Established in 1823, our county was named in honor of war hero Captain James M. Meade, killed in action at the Battle of River Raisin during the War of 1812.
In the late 1700’s, herds of wild game, such as buffalo, deer, and elk attracted pioneers in search of a great place to settle. Among these were Squire Boone, Daniel’s Brother, and his son Enoch. Others soon followed. An occasional Indian raid from across the Ohio prompted that lookouts be placed on the hills above the river. As land was cleared and crops planted, grinding mills were built on local creeks, like Doe Run – Where the first mill was built with the help of a local stonemason named Tom Lincoln. He later fathered a pretty well known son — Abraham.
Much of the county’s early development was centered around the establishment of churches. In fact, when four local churches convened a meeting in 1785, they created what would eventually become known as the Salem Association of Baptists.
During the early years of the nineteenth century, artist John James Audubon visited the county to make sketches of the birds for which he later became famous. During the Civil War, Meade County was the site of a daring raid by Confederate Gen. John Hunt Morgan’s troops, where they captured two steamboats. After a brief stop in Brandenburg, Morgan and his men invaded Indiana and Ohio. Soon after, the infamous Confederate guerrilla Marcellus Jerome Clarke, A.K.A. “Sue Mundy” (supposedly for his long hair), was captured near the Meade County community of Guston. He was subsequently taken to Louisville and hung.
The Fort Knox Military Reservation, established in 1918, occupies 15,000 acres in Meade County. To this day, the proximity of Fort Knox provides an economic boost to the county. In fact, more than 20 percent of the county’s work force is employed there.