In 1901, William White had a problem. He wanted to bring a railroad to Cadiz, Kentucky from nearby Gracey to help transport tobacco and other freight across the area. Gracey had nice rail lines served by the Illinois Central and the Louisville and Nashville. Connecting Cadiz to Gracey would benefit the citizens of this Trigg County seat immensely.
Visitors to Land Between The Lakes can take a step back in time to an era before virtually any modern amenity. The Homeplace 1850s Working Farm and Living History Museum features an active farm with period buildings, tools, animals, and interpreters dressed in attire of the 1850s.
Traveling down US 68/KY 80 from Bowling Green to Hopkinsville, first-timers may rub their eyes a bit when a giant obelisk that looks like the Washington Monument peaks over the trees in the horizon. Double-takes are certain for those who have never been through this part of southern Kentucky and have not seen the Jefferson Davis Monument.
It’s not every day one gets to see the inner-workings of a large hydroelectric plant inside a huge dam. The opportunity presented itself to us not too long ago – we got to partake in a private tour of the powerhouse at Kentucky Dam.
Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area was once home to over 2,000 families and several small tight-knit communities. The Tennessee Valley Authority took over the vast 170,000-acre peninsula between Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley in the 1960s. TVA purchased the land from the families and many of them found new homes in nearby communities.
One resident, however, refused to move.
A special thanks to the Lloyd family of Asheville, North Carolina for donating some potentially never-before-seen historical photos of the old L&N Railroad Bridge at Danville, Tennessee. The photos were from a family member who was the engineer for the L&N Railroad bridge during the construction in 1931-1932.
The United States Geological Survey has a great online mapping feature that is quite addicting and can suck you in for a while.
We recently visited the site of Cerulean Springs in Trigg County, Kentucky. The natural phenomena of the spring’s color and the history surrounding it are quite interesting.
Dexter is an unincorporated community in northern Calloway County. It is a “census-designated place” and has a population of 277 people as of 2010. The town features a few streets on a grid and was once incorporated.
History of Dexter
Similar to the nearby towns of Almo, Hardin and Hazel, Dexter was originally a railroad camp when the Paducah Tennessee and Alabama Railroad was building a line through Calloway County in 1890. Sam M. Jones, the landowner at the future site of Dexter, donated the right of way for the tracks and the site for the station on condition that he name it Dexter. He chose the name after Dexter, Mo, which at that time was a thriving railroad town. Several of Jones’ friends and neighbors were given employment in the Missouri town, so he decided to honor it by naming the station Dexter.
A post office was established on December 19, 1890 with General Buford Williams the first postmaster.
The railroad was abandoned with the tracks pulled in August 2009 (see photo below).
At some point after 1960, Dexter became unincorporated.
This photo shows the Dexter station and railroad from the early 20th century. Thanks to Michael Hale for sharing.
Location of Dexter
The community is located just to the east of US 641, about seven miles north of Murray. This map from 1936 shows Dexter.
Present day Dexter, Kentucky on Google Maps:
In 2010, the US Census Bureau shows Dexter, an “census-designated place”, having a population of 277.
If you have any information or photos you’d like to share about Dexter, please contact us. Some information was provided by the book Kentucky Place Names.
Michael Hale sent us photos of the old railroad that once went through Hardin, Kentucky, known last as the Hardin Southern Railroad.
You can read about the history of Hardin Southern Railroad here.
Mr. Hale tells us the passenger car photos are from 1986 and 1987, just three years or so after the line was severed from Hardin to Paducah. The other photos are from around 1999-2000.
The yellow locomotive pictured below was brought to Hardin around 1999 for restoration and was to be used as a backup engine for the Hardin Southern Railroad. After the HSRR was sold, and before the tracks were dismantled, the 1941 Davenport was donated to the Walkersville Southern (MD) and was moved sometime around 2007. Today, the old Davenport has been restored and is in service in Maryland.
Thanks to Michael Hale for sharing the photos and providing the information. If you have any you’d like to share, please get in touch with us.