Kentucky Genealogy and History

Mason County Kentucky

Cities and Towns


Was founded about 1788 and named for William May, an early land owner. The Mays Lick post office opened in 1800.


Maysville, the seat of Mason county, is at the confluence of Limestone Creek and the Ohio river. Settlement began in the 1780s and the site was initially known as Limestone, named for the creek. The town was formed in 1787 and named Maysville for John May, surveyor, clerk, and land owner in the area. The post office opened in 1794 as Limestone and was renamed Maysville about 1799. Both names were in use well into the nineteenth century. The population of Maysville in 1990 was 7,169.

Maysville became an important port. Ferries crossed to Ohio and a road was opened to Lexington by around 1800. Maysville is one of largest burley tobacco markets in the world and at one time was one of largest hemp markets.

The Mason county seat from its formation in 1788 until 1848 was nearby Washington, which has since been annexed by Maysville.


It was settled beginning about 1775 and laid out as a town in 1785. It was named for George Washington. Washington was made the seat of Mason county, Virginia when it was formed in 1788. In 1848 the county seat was moved to nearby Maysville, which has since annexed Washington. Washington is now sometimes called Old Washington. The Washington Court House post office opened in 1794. The population in 1990, before annexation by Maysville, was 795.

Fire Bucket List 1815


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