Welcome to McCreary County, KY
History and Genealogy
Presented by Kentucky Genealogy Trails
a part of Genealogy Trails
Volunteers Dedicated to Free Genealogy
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McCreary county was formed in 1912, becoming Kentucky's
one-hundred-twentieth, and final county in order of formation. The
present county boundaries contain 427.7 square miles of land area. The
majority of the county was carved out of Wayne and Whitley Counties,
with a large center strip following the rail line and roadway from
The county is named for James B. McCreary, Governor of Kentucky from 1875 to 1879. It is the only Kentucky county to not have a single incorporated city. Because of this, county government is the sole local government agency for the entire county. Attractions in McCreary County include the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, Cumberland Falls State Park, and the Big South Fork Railroad, which tours several former coal camps.
The majority of the county is owned by the federal government. 63% is owned and managed by the Daniel Boone National Forest, and 18% owned and managed by the National Park Service as the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area. Its county seat is Whitley City.
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