top of page
Old Log Cabin in Cynthiana, with a foreground showing the fountain in Joe B. Hall Square

Cynthiana

Get to Know

Old Cynthiana Jail
Cynthiana's Old Log Cabin in summer, with a flowering tree in the front covered in pink blossoms
Storefront and marquee of the Cynthiana Museum
Kentucky Commemorative sign commemorating and describing the founding of Harrison County

History

230 years ago, Robert Harrison and his two daughters, Cynthia and Ana arrived on the banks of the Licking River. Taken in by its beauty and charm, Harrison established a city, named after his two daughters, and left a legacy that we still treasure today.

Harrison chose to leave the big city life of the east coast for a place of solitude and escape, to a place where he could raise his family along the hills and river of Kentucky.

Since that founding, Cynthiana has grown. But even with the coming of the railroad, whiskey and industry, we have maintained the best aspects of small town life over the years.

We value where we’ve come from and are excited to see where we are headed. When you visit, step back in time with self-guided tours or a visit to our museum to truly appreciate our heritage and place in the world.

  • Historical Churches - Cynthiana is home to many beautiful, historic churches. Pick up a copy of our Historic Churches brochure and take a self-guided tour

  • Civil War Battle Sites - Cynthiana is full of Civil War history. Both Civil and Revolutionary War battles were fought in Harrison County.

  • Historical Jail - Built in 1886, Cynthiana’s historic jail is located right downtown, next to the Sheriff’s Department.

  • Cynthiana-Harrison County Museum - Soak in Cynthiana’s rich history at our local museum. Learn all about all the things listed above, and so much more.

  • Battle Grove Cemetery - stroll through this beautiful and historic cemetery on a self-guided history walk to see grave sites of individuals who have been instrumental in the history of Cynthiana, or individuals who gained fame in other areas of the country and selected Battle Grove Cemetery as their final resting place. 

Fun Facts

  • Cynthiana is named after Cynthia and Ana, the two daughters of the city’s founder, Robert Harrison.

  • John Hunt Morgan burned down half of Cynthiana during Morgan’s Raid in 1846

  • Cynthiana includes sites of both Revolutionary and Civil War battles.

  • The creators of the Walking Dead comic book series are natives of Cynthiana, and the opening scene of the series is set in Cynthiana at Harrison Memorial Hospital.

  • Cynthiana is home to the world’s largest Walking Dead mural

  • Every Post-It® note in the world is manufactured at the Cynthiana 3M plant

  • Cynthiana is the birthplace of the 2020 Kentucky Derby winner, Authentic

  • In The Blues Brothers movie released in 2000, the Blues Brothers go to Cynthiana, Kentucky for a bluegrass concert at the fair.

  • Cynthiana once boasted over thirty distilleries and dozens of saloons

  • Rohs Opera House is the oldest historic theater in Kentucky and one of the most haunted buildings in the state.

  • Legendary University of Kentucky basketball coach Joe B. Hall was born and raised in Cynthiana.

Section of a wall completed covered in Post-It notes
Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore standing in front of road sign reading Welcome to Cynthiana, Home of The Walking Dead Creator Robert Kirkman Artist Tony Moore
Woman standing in front of a huge mural showing a bottle of John Poindexter Old Bourbon
Mural of Joe B. Hall wearing a blue suit and tie, holding a rolled up program and sporting an NCAA Championship ring

Population

CYNTHIANA

6,333

HARRISON COUNTY

18,692

Cynthiana is a Certified
Work Ready Community

60% of the US population is
within 600 miles of Cynthiana

Distance Matrix

Cynthiana to...

Lexington - 28 miles

Louisville - 93 miles

Cincinnati - 58 miles

Georgetown - 21 miles

Bowling Green - 184 miles

The Ark Encounter - 26 miles

bottom of page