Artifacts and other archaeological remains show that what is now Madison County in Central Kentucky was occupied for thousands of years by Native American tribes that roamed, hunted and camped throughout the region. Written records begin in the late 1700s with the arrival of the legendary Daniel Boone and other explorers.
Boone, along with other pioneers, built Fort Boonesborough in 1775 in what was then the Virginia Territory, but would later become Madison County in Kentucky. The land had been purchased a year earlier from the Cherokee tribe. In 1785, the land was officially named Madison County, after the Virginian statesman and fourth president of the United States, James Madison. The initial county seat was small town named Milford, but in 1798 was moved to Richmond, named after the Virginia capital.
Madison County’s history is rich and reflects that of the state and nation as a whole. It stands out for several reasons, but perhaps none so significant as its part in the Civil War. The second largest battle in the state, the battle of Richmond, occurred in Madison County in 1862. During the battle, a veteran Confederate force led by General Edmund Kirby Smith, routed a fledgling Union Army and took 4,000 prisoners.
Just south of Lexington, Richmond is an important area of commerce and part of the economic engine in the central and eastern parts of the state. With a population of roughly 82,000, the county in present day is perhaps best known for housing two of Kentucky’s premier colleges: Eastern Kentucky University and Berea College.
EKU began as Central University in 1874, only nine years after the Civil War ended. In 1906 it Eastern Kentucky State Normal School, founded to train teachers in the Eastern part of Kentucky. The school eventually outgrew its original purpose and branched into other academic areas. It was renamed Eastern Kentucky University in 1965, and in present day has roughly 17,000 students, six colleges and more than 230 student organizations.
While smaller than EKU, Berea College is perhaps even better known throughout the world. Founded in 1855, Berea was the first coeducational and racially integrated college in the South. Presently, it has about 1,600 students. What makes the college unique aside from its history is the method of payment for students: students admitted to the college pay no tuition, but participate in work-study programs for a minimum of 10 hours a week in order to go to school free for four years. US News & World Report ranked Berea the 60th best liberal arts school in the nation, third for most innovative schools and 10th in best undergraduate teaching.
Present day Madison County has become a tourist destination for several reasons. With the recreational opportunities of Fort Boonesborough, the county has a foot firmly planted in the past and a clear understanding of how the county came to be. Because of the natural beauty of the area, hiking and camping opportunities abound, as well as other outdoor activities. The county and cities sponsor events year round, including a fall festival and summer concert series.
Along with a large population of active individuals, though, sometimes come accidents. For more than 15 years Billy Johnson and The Johnson Law Firm have been proud to serve all Kentuckians, and especially those in the central and southern part of the state. Practicing from offices in Richmond, the Johnson Law Firm focuses on personal injury cases, or those in which an individual is injured through the negligence or actions of another. The Johnson Law Firm is dedicated to helping injured clients get the compensation they deserve. Billy Johnson and The Johnson Law Firm are well-versed in personal injury law, handling cases ranging from car accidents to medical malpractice, wrongful death, work injuries, and many others.
No matter your situation, the Johnson Law Firm has the knowledge, experience and resources to help you get the compensation you deserve. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free evaluation, contact us online or call us at 1.606.433.0682.