History of Logan County

The area that became Logan County was originally known as "Rogue's Harbor." This was where the "outlaws-of-the-outlaws" came to hide. Logan was formed on 01 September 1792 from the west portion of Lincoln County, Kentucky, in honor of Col. Benjamin Logan, a Virginia native who was a pioneer, politician, and soldier of the American Revolution. The Act of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky creating Logan County read:

An ACT for dividing the county of Lincoln. Approved June 28, 1792

BE it enacted by the General Assembly that from and after the first day of September next, The County of Lincoln shall be divided into two Distinct Counties that is to say all that part of the said County including the following bounds to wit: Beginning at the Elk Lick on Little Barren River, thence a South course to the North Carolina line, thence along the said line to the Mississippi, thence up the same to the mouth of Ohio and up the same to the mouth of Green River, thence up the same to the mouth of Little Barren River thence up the same to the Beginning shall be one distinct County and called and known by the name of Logan and all the residue of the said county shall retain the name of Lincoln.


A Court for the said County of Logan shall be held by the Justices thereof on the fourth Tuesday of every month after the said division shall take place in such manner as is provided by Law in respect to other Counties and as shall be by their Commissions directed.

The Justices to be named in the Commission of the peace for the said County of Logan shall meet at the house of Richard Mauldin in the said County upon the first Court day after the said division shall take place and having taken the Oaths prescribed by Law and the Sheriff being legally qualified to act, the Justices shall proceed to appoint and qualify a Clerk and fix upon a place to hold Courts in the said County, at or as near the centre (sic) thereof as the situation and convenience will admit of and thenceforth the said Court shall proceed to erect the public Buildings at such place and until such buildings be compleated (sic) to appoint such place for holding Courts as they shall think proper. Provided always that the appointment of a place for the erection of public buildings and of a Clerk shall not be made unless a majority of the Justices of the Court of the said County concur and such appointments shall be postponed until some Court day when a majority shall be present but the Court may appoint a Clerk pro tempore.

It shall be lawful for the Sheriff of the said County of Lincoln to collect or make distress for any public dues and officers fees, which shall remain unpaid by the Inhabitants thereof, at the time such division shall take place and shall be accountable for the same in like manner as if this Act had not been made.

And that the Court of the said County of Lincoln shall have jurisdiction in all actions and Suits in Law, or equity, which shall be depending before them at the time of said division, and they shall try and determine the same issue process, and award Execution thereon.

And until an enumeration shall be made pursuant to the Constitution, the said County of Logan shall not be entitled to any Representation in the General Assembly.

Legislation signed by Governor Shelby; Robert Breckinridge (Speaker of the House of Representatives); and Alexander S. Bullitt (Speaker of the Senate).

[Reference: Microfilm Roll #1 - Governor Isaac Shelby: Executive Journal & Enrolled Bills]

The northeast border of Logan County, upon creation, was the Green River. For this reason, "land south of the Green River" as mentioned in countless military land warrants for service rendered by Virginians during the Revolutionary War, was laid aside to fill those warrants. These are included in Willard Rouse Jilson's Kentucky Land Grants pages 256 - 442. Obtaining a patent was a multi-step process that did not always result in a governor's grant being issued. If you locate information on an ancestor's possible land grant, check with the Kentucky Secretary of State Land Office Division for confirmation and copies of the original papers issued.

The greater majority of Kentucky settlers originated in Virginia, although some arrived from Maryland, Pennsylvania, and other states. In 1860, almost 229,000 free Kentucky native-born individuals had relocated to Missouri, Indiana, and Illinois before migrating further west. This mass westward migration of Kentuckians earned the Commonwealth the title of "Mother of Western States."

The Acts of the Commonwealth of Kentucky providing for the creation and later divisions of Logan County:


01 Sep 1792 - Ky. Acts 1792, 1st assy., 1st sess., ch. 12, sec. 1, pp. 19-20 (LOGAN created)

01 Mar 1797 - Ky. Acts 1796-1797, 5th assy., 1st sess., sec. 1, pp. 9-10 (Creation of WARREN)

01 Mar 1797 - Ky. Acts 1796-1797, 5th assy., 1st sess., sec. 1, pp. 13-14 (Creation of CHRISTIAN)

06 Feb 1798 - Ky. Acts 1798, 6th assy., 2d sess., ch. 33, pp. 55-56; Ky. Acts 1798-1799, 7th assy., ch. 5, sec. 1, p. 10 (Boundary between LOGAN and WARREN clarified)

15 May 1799 - Ky. Acts 1798-1799, 7th assy., ch. 65, sec. 1, pp. 128-130 (Creation of MUHLENBERG )

01 May 1810 - Ky. Acts 1809-1810, 18th assy., ch. 119, sec. 1, pp. 44-47 (Creation of BUTLER)

29 Dec 1813 -Ky. Acts 1813-1814, 22d assy., ch. 102, sec. 1, pp. 129-130 (to BUTLER)

01 Apr 1819 -Ky. Acts 1818-1819, 27th assy., ch. 342, sec. 1, pp. 633-637 (Creation of SIMPSON)

01 Apr 1820 -Ky. Acts 1819-1820, 28th assy., ch. 460, sec. 1, pp. 817-819 (Creation of TODD)

01 Feb 1822 -Ky. Acts 1821, 30th assy., 1st sess., ch. 246, sec. 1, pp. 306-307 (to TODD)

01 Feb 1823 -Ky. Acts 1822, 31st assy., ch. 461, sec. 1, pp. 148-149 (Exchanged with TODD)

14 Jan 1869 -Ky. Acts 1869, Jan. adj. sess., ch. 1241, sec. 1, pp. 2-3 (Lost to SIMPSON)

22 Jan 1872 - Ky. Acts 1875-1876, vol. 1, ch. 20, sec. 1, p. 202 (wording of boundary change corrected)

[For Kentucky Secretary of State Land Office Division links, enter the name of the county in the "Search For" box, middle of left column. For Google Book links: use Ctrl + F and enter "Logan" into the search box without the quotes. Use the down arrow until you locate the specific act.]

For an interactive map showing the boundary changes, visit Maps of Kentucky. For additional information on Kentucky Land Records, visit the Kentucky Secretary of State Land Office Division.