county seat is Benton. The county is named for
John Marshall, Chief Justice of the United
States from 1801 to 1835. Until 2004, it was a
prohibition or dry county, when residents of
Calvert City voted to allow sales of liquor by
the drink in restaurants. It is the only
Purchase Region county to not border another
county was formed in 1842 from part of Calloway
County. The first settlement was around 1818,
when the area was bought from Native Americans
as part of the Jackson Purchase.
From its settlement
until the 1930s, the county was nearly
completely agricultural. The creation of
Kentucky Lake by the Tennessee Valley
Authority in the 1940s brought tourism and
industry to the county with resorts along the
lake and chemical and manufacturing plants,
mostly in the Calvert City area, attracted by
the dam's cheap and plentiful electricity. The
creation of the lake led to the destruction of
two Marshall County towns, Birmingham, about
six miles north of the present hamlet of
Fairdealing, and Gilbertsville, which was at
the present dam site. Gilbertsville was
rebuilt somewhat to the west of its original
location. Birmingham residents were dispersed.
Gilbertsville was an incorporated town until
the 1970s, when its charter was dissolved by
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