Daviess County, Kentucky

Some historians consider the Battle of Tippecanoe, fought in Indiana in November 1811, to be the unofficial beginning of the War of 1812. A casualty from that battle, Kentuckian Joseph Hamilton Daviess, was the namesake for Daviess County. Historical Marker #1158 commemorates the county being named for this Kentuckian.

Born in Virginia, the well-educated Daviess became an attorney and served on several expeditions against Native Americans. In 1806, as U.S. attorney, he prosecuted former Vice President Aaron Burr for treason. He was a well-respected attorney, served in the Kentucky legislature, and was "one of the first attorneys from west of the Appalachians to argue a case before the Supreme Court."

In 1811, William Henry Harrison led a campaign against Native Americans in present-day Indiana. Daviess, who was active in the Kentucky militia, eventually became a colonel in Harrison's command. At the Battle of Tippecanoe, which secured national fame for Harrison, Daviess was killed while leading a charge.

When Daviess County was created in 1815, it was named in his honor.

Images

Daviess County tobacco field, southeast of Owensboro

Daviess County tobacco field, southeast of Owensboro

This photograph, taken around 1920, shows a tobacco field located southeast of Owensboro. Daviess County was named for a War of 1812 veteran. Courtesy the Kentucky Historical Society. View File Details Page

The Ohio River near Owensboro, Daviess County

The Ohio River near Owensboro, Daviess County

A postcard image of the Ohio River near Owensboro, Daviess County. The county was named for a War of 1812 veteran. Courtesy the Kentucky Historical Society. View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Sanders, “Daviess County, Kentucky,” ExploreKYHistory, accessed April 29, 2017, http://explorekyhistory.ky.gov/items/show/87.

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