The First 200
Years of Pendleton County
By: Mildred Bowen Belew
Contributed, with permission, By:Kristin
There was one
building on the South side of Fourth Street with Harman
Deglow on the corner of Fourth and Maple. There was
only a few buildings on the side streets and one on
the east part of town were four buildings; Casey’s stone
house, Woodworth’s house, Bruce Hudnoll’s house and they
Almore house. There were but three houses west of the
railroad, the Hoy house, Riggs house and Lawrence
Dickerson’s home at the end of Dickerson Road. The
William Johnsons house was on the site of the Falmouth
was one church located on Second Street open for anyone
who cared to enter, preach and use as a school.
first court house was a stone building constructed on
the present site in 1812, under the supervision of
William Clark, one of the first Attorneys on Falmouth.
John Waller and Alvin Mountjoy acquired the land which
had been a land grant issued to Col. Holt Richardson.
John Waller surveyed the town and gave the county the
square between Main, Chappel, Cross Main (now Shelby)
and Second Street for the Court House. The present
building was built in 1848 and was remodeled in 1884 and
again in 1970’s.
first jail was at Second and Maple Streets, built by
Reuben Kemp in 1800. It was used as a jail until 1854
when it was sold to James Clark for a residence, and a
new jail was built behind the court house facing Chappel
Street. It was originally a lof structure and has been
restored and remodeled in 1984, after being closed for
several months by the State of Kentucky.
of the first roads was from Falmouth to Harrison County
line and was viewed and marked out along Birds old trace
to Cowsen/Cowsers Plantation, thence to Desengers
Plantation, thence to Sharps Plantation across the
Blanket Creek to Downards Road thence to Vance’s and
Harrison County line. John Cook was to act as overseerer.
1796, Samuel Bryant, Isaac Mise, James McMurty and
William Dehart were to act as viewers and mark out the
nearest and best way from John Sanders ferry across the
South Licking River to intersect with Grassy Creek Road,
now U.S. 17, near the head waters of Harris Creek. This
road went through the lands of Isaace Mise, John Moor
(?) and John Fowler. The road was established and John
Sanders was appointed overseer of the same and all the
male laboring titheables along said road were to help
the overseer, when required to cut the same and to keep
it in good repair.
report of men appointed to lay off a road from Roberts
Ferry to the last waters of Grassy Creek in 1795 read as
follows: “Having received a copy of an order from
Campbell County appointing us viewers of the road from
Robert’s Ferry to the last waters of Grassy Creek on a
direct line to Gaines, We have attended t the business
and have reviewed and marked a road to go from said
ferry ( as straight as the ground will admit) by John
Duckers and Hill Wilson’s, crossing Grassy Creek at the
ford below Grant’s first cabins, above the forks and
said creek and thence the northeast bank of the left
hand forks of said creek as far as Josiah Thrashers and
thence with said Grant’s wagon road to thence with said
Grant’s wagon road to the last fork of Grassy Creek,
leaving said road and taking a right hand ridge for
about one mile above where said road leaves the last
waters of Grassy Creek, which we think may be a
tolerable good road if well laid out and the banks of
the creek well dug down, with one bridge made at Duckers
first roads in Pendelton County were marked out and
surveyed by people appointed by the courts. Then the
people living along those routes would help keep them
travelable, by grading and knapping tock to pave them.
The creeks in those days didn’t have bridges, there were
all forded. The rivers had ferries for crossings. It
wasn’t till 1830 that Kentucky had macadamized roads.
Then mostly, around the Lexington area. To pay for these
roads there were toll-house on each, that charged a fee
to use the road. There was a toll-house the entrance to
DeMossville and one at Butler, ran by Benjamin Hensley.
Some of the rates were; one horse or mule with a rider 5
cents, each head of cattle 2 cents, each head of hogs ˝
cents, each horse 30 cents, wagon with four horses 50
cents, and stage coaches with 12 passangers 75 cents.
The same rates were posted at each toll-house and used
throughout the state by all toll-house keepers. Failure
to go through the gate and pay the correct toll
subjected the user of the road to a fine of $10.00.
roads often passed through the toll collectors house.
One part of the house was on one side of the road and
the other part on the other side of the road.
first house in Falmouth was built in 1790’s, a log cabin
for Alvin Montjoy and his wife Mary, on Chappel Street.
It had a full basement with a fireplace in it. The
chimneys were built locally hand molded brick. It had
hand hewed joists and pegger rafters. There are four
fireplaces in the cabin, one on the second floor, two on
the first floor and one in the basement. A lean too was
added to the back in the late 1880’s. Alvin Montjoy
died in 1827. He was a Revolutionary War Captain. He
and his wife Mary had four children. The cabin sold in
1837 to George Lightfoot. He deeded the property to his
daughter, Savannah Holton on 1848. It changed several
hands several times down through the century. Carrol
and Nancy Houchin purchased the house in 1975 and had it
restored in 1980.
N.C. Ridgeway was one of Falmouths foremost tobacco
dealers at one time. He had a warehouse at the south
end of Park Street just before it becomes Woodson Road.
It was destroyed by a small tornado. The tobacco was
prepared in a large containers called hogs heads and
shipped to Cincinnati, Ohio.
LLL Building -101 Shelby Street was named for Lexington,
Louisville and Latonia Highways. It was owned in 1853
by Samuel Hauser. The two story brick building housed
three stores being used over the years for a milinary
shop, clothing store, grocery store, meat market,
Pendelton County Liberty, beauty shop, and at the
present time Doug’s T.V. Shop.
Across the street on the southwest corner of Main and
Shelby Streets is the Phoenix Hotel. It was opened for
business in 1903and was noted for its fine hospitality
for over years. It was owned by George E. Ross. It
housed many political figures who came here, people who
cam from out of town to attend funerals and state lodge
meetings would have their out of town people housed
here. When important jury trials were in session at the
court house the jurors would be quartered there over
night. Mr Ross’ daughters Margaret and Emma were still
running the hotel in 1955. In later years it was used
as a furniture store and floral shop.
present Western Auto Store at 107 Shelby Street, once
housed the Wonderland Theater, operated by Elmer
Woodhead. It was used as a grocery and variety store by
James Barker, a Western Auto Store operated by Mr. and
Mrs. W.A. Caldwell and later by George R. Donahue.
Today it is used as a craft shop.
Kennett Tavern- 234 Main Street at the southeast corner
of Main and Shelby Streets owned and operated in 1810 by
William Kennett, son of James and Sally Mullins
Kennett. This is the oldest commercial building in
Falmouth. Originally two building and later joined and
made into one. During the Civil War, Confederate and
Union Soldiers were quartered in the tavern. In the
late 1800’s and early 1900’s Balzer Beaugrand owned the
building and he lived there and operated a confectionary
and ice cream parlor.
Eagles Nest Tavern- 126 West Shelby Street dated back to
1875. It has been used as a grocery, hardware store,
harness shop, Doctors office, cafe and saloon. John
Carey bought it in 1883 and sold it in 1900 Williamstown
– Owenton Telephone and Telegraph Company. They sold it
to Citizens Telephone in 1910 and was used as a phone
building until in the late 1930’s. Today it is used as a
florist shop in the front Joyce Campbell and the back a
lawyers office for Edwin Monroe.
Building – northeast corner of Main and Shelby Streets,
now Moreland Drug Store, originally was owned by Gus
Schubert, Built in 1892 as a drug store and as assembly
hall and family residence on the second floor.
Artwork: Sweet Solitude
by Edmund Blair Leighton