About This Site



A Site Dedicated to Harrison County, Kentucky History & Genealogy


www.HarrisonCountyKy.US is a site which has be developed for genealogists and local historians from near and far, not just for those who live in the county and who are interested in researching their own heritage, but also for those whose ancestors and families lived there in the recent or distant past and for whom even a brief day-trip to perform research in Cynthiana is not possible.


The site focuses on bringing local records, texts, and indexes into the homes of researchers via the internet that no other site on the internet can offer.  Among these are:


Marriage Records Indexes - The online marriage indexes accessible at the site are based on the four original general marriage indexes located in the Harrison County Court Clerk's offices in Cynthiana (General Cross Index to Marriages 1 (1794-1893), General Index to Marriages 2 (1894-1947), General Cross Index to Marriages 3 (1947-1985), and General Cross Index to Marriages - Colored (1866-1949)).


The marriage indexes consist of just over four hundred individual web pages with approximately 35,000 individual entries (The first volume indexes 17,656 individuals, the second lists 14,568 individuals; while the African American Index contains the names of 3,544 individuals) referring to more than 17,500 marriage records in all.


While some of the county’s marriage records have been indexed and/or abstracted before, however never beyond 1858, the African American marriage record indexes had never been abstracted, transcribed, or published before the existence of pages dedicated to them at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/Records/.


Each of the online indexes is comprised of a complete every-name alphabetized listing, which itself is much easier to use than even the originals, which list the marriages chronologically by bride and groom.  The new indexes have also been published and are for sale in book form, which amount to nearly 1,000 pages of text, a number which demonstrates the size of the effort, if the reference to 17,500 marriage records doesn’t seem impressive enough.


Copies of the published indexes have been donated to the Harrison County Court Clerk's office for the public's use, and many Northern Kentucky libraries have purchased complete sets for their genealogy collections.


Funeral Home Records Indexes – A consolidated index consisting of 16,260 entries based on several smaller and older typescript indexes which formed part of the microfilmed record of two historic Harrison County funeral homes, the Smith-Rees Funeral Home and the Whaley Funeral Home, can be viewed at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/Records/, along with explanatory notes and brief articles detailing the histories of several local funeral homes and their predecessors.  In addition an index of extant Colonial Funeral Home records is also available to researchers.


Guides to Resources – When other sites have provided better access to indexes and records that would be of interest to the Harrison County researcher for such topics as birth, death, and cemetery records, brief guides have been prepared and are linked to at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/Records/.


In the case of cemetery records, the transcriptions of several small cemeteries and church burial grounds have been donated and accepted for use at the site, such as those for several Methodist church cemeteries in the county, including one for Sunrise Cemetery, all compiled by Col. Doug A. Harper (Ret'd) of Lexington, Kentucky.


Texts and Indexes of Local Histories and Newspapers – Nearly 250 pages of the original texts of two volumes of particular importance to the local history of the county have been transcribed and posted online:  The Harrrison County chapters of W.H. Perrin’s 1883 History of Bourbon, Scott, Harrison and Nicholas Counties, Kentucky (www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/History/) and Chronicles of Cynthiana by Lucinda Boyd, published in 1894 (www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/History/).


In 1993 a Pictorial History of Harrison County was published and, while the images of this text are not available for publication online, an every name index has been prepared for the individual subjects of the 100+ pages of photographs included in the original volume.


Chapters concerning Harrison County found in the 1847 and 1874 Collins histories of Kentucky, excerpts from 1893’s The Life and Addresses of W.H. Woolery, LL.D., Third President of Bethany College (a biography of a Harrison County native), and items about John Hunt Morgan’s 1862 and 1864 raids on Cynthiana  have also been transcribed and added to the site.  Links to these latter texts can be found at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/History/.


In June, 1896 The Cynthiana Democrat published a 24-page "Special Edition" of its weekly edition, an issue chock-full of photographs of Cynthiana and its business establishments, as well as biographical sketches of its businessmen, government, and church leaders and descriptions of its government, school, and church facilities.  Both the Democrat’s "Special Edition" and 1905’s 32-page "Souvenir Supplement," published by the Democrat’s Republican rival, the Log Cabin, are "must-reads" for anyone interested in life in Cynthiana and the county as it appeared almost exactly a century ago.


Indexes have been compiled for each of the two editions, and more than ninety percent of the texts of each, all of those relating to Harrison County and its people, have been transcribed and posted online.  Images from the Democrat have also been indexed and added to the newspaper’s site.  Links to all of the aforementioned texts can be found at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/History/.


Biographical Texts – Texts of local and state histories published throughout the country in the late 19th and early 20th centuries have been scoured for references to Cynthiana and other Harrison County communities in the hopes of building an even greater history of the people whose lives were spent in the county and whose lives were once touched by the experience of having lived there.  Nearly half of the 600 biographical sketches which fill out the content of these pages were found in Kentucky resources, i.e. local and family histories devoted to Kentucky, its counties, cities, communities, and people, including W.H. Perrin's 1882 History of Bourbon, Scott, Harrison and Nicholas Counties, Kentucky, Chronicles of Cynthiana by Lucinda Boyd, commemorative editions of the Cynthiana Democrat and the Log Cabin newspapers, the five volumes of Kerr’s 1922 History of Kentucky, Gresham's 1896 Biographical Cyclopedia of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.


Another 300+ sketches which documented the lives of those originally from Harrison County were found in volumes devoted to the histories of Arizona, California, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oregon, and Texas, or some smaller political divisions thereof. No doubt people from Harrison County settled in parts of the other thirty-five states as well, and it is hoped to expand the biography subsite even further by accepting submissions from researchers who may have found biographies relating to Harrison County and adding them to the pages at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/People/.


Views of Historic Harrison County – Whenever historical images of the people and places of the county are made available, every effort is made to include them at the site.  Of special interest are images of two postcard collections of historic scenes from throughout Harrison County.  That of Charles W. Feix is extensive and gives the visitor an exclusive look at how Harrison County, especially Cynthiana, appeared in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.


Host to the Website of the Harrison County Historical Society www.HarrisonCountyKy.US hosts the web pages of the Harrison County Historical Society, aiding in the recruiting of new members throughout the country (nearly half of all members reside outside of Harrison County), providing news of the “goings-on” at the society’s monthly meetings, as well as providing yet another research resource to the site’s visitors in the form of an archive of the society’s monthly publication, The Harrison Heritage News.  Issues from 2000 thru 2013 have been posted online, and a subject index for all issues up to the end of the previous year is always updated.


The indexes of the society's publications are also a part of the society's web pages at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/Historical-Society/, offered as a research aid and an enticement to join the society or to make a purchase and contribute to the society's efforts.


Guide to the Kentucky Room of the Cynthiana-Harrison County Public Library – The genealogical and historical research resources of the Christine Burgan Kentucky Room of the Cynthiana-Harrison County Public Library have been cataloged and a guide prepared and posted at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US/CHCPL-Kentucky-Room.htm so as to give those who may plan on visiting Cynthiana and Harrison County a "heads-up" on what resources are available to the genealogist or local historian.  The library’s own website (www.CynthianaLibrary.org) has linked to the pages at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US.


While I have only been directly contacted by a few of the visitors to the site, it averages about 10,000 page views a month, a number which indicates that  www.HarrisonCountyKy.US seems to have proven itself a valuable research resource to many in Kentucky and throughout the country.



How to Create a Web Site

A long time ago, "around the turn of the century" ... alright, it was 2000, but isn't it more fun to say it that way! ...


Anyways, way back then I bought a Microsoft program called FrontPage 2000. I plugged it in, turned it on ... and PFFFT!!!  For some reason, the program and I just didn't click.


Several years later, Microsoft offered an upgrade, and so I bought that, thinking I would give it a try. This time, the program worked for me. It turned out that secret to FrontPage was understanding "tables."  If you've ever put together a website from scratch, you know what I mean.


Everything you have ever seen at www.HarrisonCountyKy.US was built from scratch, I used no templates, nor did I copy from any other sites. There were a lot of trials and just a few errors over the years, but I have finally acheived like the look that the site has now.


Content will continue to grow, sometimes slowly, at other times in spurts.  Original texts, old texts, and new images will still be added, some pages changed or moved, and some material may even be copied to other social media sites, like Blogger, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter or ... but I hope to keep www.HarrisonCountyKy.US going as long as I can.


It has been ten years now since I first created this site, and sometimes I even forget what is available at HarrisonCountyKy.US. I've still got some work to do, and more to add, but all you have to do is to keep coming back ... and click, read, learn, and enjoy!

The content of www.HarrisonCountyKy.US has been written, compiled, transcribed, abstracted, extracted and/or edited by Philip Naff, except for content which has been submitted for use at the site by unpaid volunteer contributors or where otherwise noted, and he maintains all rights in these web pages as defined by the copyright laws of the United States of America.  No content of this website may be used at or viewed through any other website without the express written consent of Philip Naff.


Last Edited Update: 01.01.2017

© 2006-17 - Philip A. Naff