Kentucky is the 15th state in the United States, joining the Union on June 1, 1792, after having been originally a part of Virginia. It is located in the south-central region of the US. Because of the abundance of the bluegrass on Kentucky’s fertile soils, it is nicknamed the “Bluegrass State.”
Its diverse and abundant ecosystem, industry, and features make Kentucky one of the prosperous states. Of course, it is also the ohome of bluegrass music and the world-famous Kentucky Fried Chicken. Its capital is Frankfort and largest city is Louisville. More little known but no less interesting facts to discover about Kentucky await you in this article!
Lake Cumberland is a man-made lake or reservoir serving hydroelectricity to several counties in Kentucky: Clinton, Laurel, McCreary, Pulaski, Russell and Wayne. This reservoir, which was also built to control flooding in these areas, has also become a popular tourist destination. Normally, the lake has a depth of about 27 meters (about 90 feet), but it can as deep as about 60 meters (about 197 feet)
The Metropolis Lake is one of the only few natural lakes in Kentucky. It is part of the Kentucky State Nature Preserve, a tract located in McCracken County, Kentucky with a land area measuring 123 acres. The Metropolis Lake take much of the area (50 acres) and is home to the five species of fish, crayfish, and a couple of plants that are quite rare. The lake is surrounded by bald cypress and swamp tupelo trees.
The Red River Gorge is a system of canyons, majority of which belong to the Daniel Boone National Forest, and reserved as the Red River Gorge Geological Area. This unusual, intricate and rugged canyon system features numerous rock shelters, amazing natural sandstone arches, and waterfalls. No wonder this has been the favorite of many rock-climbing enthusiasts.
The cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) is the official bird of many states, including Kentucky, which gave it such designation in 1942.
The goldenrod (Solidago gigantea) has been the official flower of Kentucky since 1926. Two other states (South Carolina and Nebraska), also has the goldenrod as its official state flower.
The Thoroughbred is a popular horse breed extensively used for horse racing, which is a multi-billion dollar industry. Kentucky named it as the official state horse breed in 1996.
Kentucky’s moniker the “Bluegrass State” is based from the species of grass (Poa prantesis) that grows abundantly in the state.
The University of Kentucky is a public institution of higher learning founded in 1865 and located in the consolidated city-county of Lexington, Kentucky. One of the two land-grant unversities in the state, the University of Kentucky is also the largest there. Students can take any of the wide range of different courses from agriculture, design, education, law, medicine, fine arts and engineering, among others.
Breaks Interstate Park is a state park located on the borders of Kentucky (on the southeast) and Virginia (on the southwest). It is also famously referred to as the “Grand Canyon of the South.” The park is a 4,500-acre tract of land also has the deepest gorge east of Mississippi River. Frontiersman Daniel Boone (after whom the Daniel Boone National Forest was named) was the first white man to discover the area during the mid-18th century.
Kentucky is one of the only four states to use the term “commonwealth,” the others being Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Virginia from where Kentucky emerged from. Kentucky’s official name is the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The term doesn’t really mean anything much except it is merely used as an emphasis for a place governed for the general good of the citizens, like in the British royal colonies.
The Cumberland Falls is a big waterfall on the Cumberland River, Kentucky. Also dubbed as the “Little Niagara” or “Niagara of the South,” the Cumberland Falls has a total average height of 68 feet (21 meters). Visitors can have the rare opportunity to witness a moonbow in the falls, under a full moon on a cloudless night.
The Frankfort state capitol is the seat of government of the state of Kentucky, located in the state capital Frankfort. Built in the early 20th century, it was designed in Beaux Arts architectural style by renowned architect Frank Mills Andrews. It was added to National Register of Historical Places in 1973.
The gray squirrel or eastern gray squirrel was named by Kentucky as the official state wild animal game species in 1968.