|Founded||December 13, 1800|
|Named for||Anthony Wayne|
|• Total||484 sq mi (1,250 km2)|
|• Land||458 sq mi (1,190 km2)|
|• Water||26 sq mi (70 km2) 5.4%|
|• Density||40/sq mi (16/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−4 (EDT)|
Wayne County is a county in the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of the 2010 United States Census, the population was 20,813. Its county seat is Monticello. The county, on the south-central border with Tennessee, was named for Gen. Anthony Wayne, a Revolutionary War hero. As of November 3, 2020 Wayne County is a Wet county—the measure passed by a margin of 4,901 for and 3,966 against. Alcohol may now be sold and consumed there.
The first known European-American settlers to visit the area were longhunters who arrived in the 1770s. They established a temporary camp near Mill Springs on the Cumberland River. Benjamin Price built a log cabin in 1775, and Price's Station became one of the earliest Kentucky settlements. This was still an area of Cherokee homeland territory, and conflicts arose between the groups as more Americans settled here.
Many Revolutionary War veterans followed Price, including Joshua Jones, who arrived in 1794, Jonathan and James Ingram in 1796, Cornelius Phillips in 1798, and Isaac West in 1799. Veterans, they had each been given land grants in the area, in lieu of back salary payments by the United States government from the war.
Wayne County was formed December 13, 1800 from Pulaski and Cumberland counties. It was the 43rd county in the state and is named for General "Mad Anthony" Wayne, a hero of the American Revolution and the Northwest Indian War. Wayne's victory at the Battle of Fallen Timbers virtually ended the Indian threat against Kentucky settlers.
The area was developed for agriculture, and planters used enslaved African Americans as laborers. Early in the Civil War, Confederate Army General Felix Zollicoffer made his headquarters in the Brown-Lanier House at Mill Springs. He was killed at the Battle of Mill Springs on January 19, 1862, when he mistook some Union troops for his own and approached them. The Union men shot him dead, and without their leader, the Confederate were defeated.
According to the US Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 484 square miles (1,250 km2), of which 458 square miles (1,190 km2) is land and 26 square miles (67 km2) (5.4%) is water.
The county's elevation ranges from 656 feet (200 m) to 1,870 feet (570 m) ASL, at the Monticello/Wayne County Airport the elevation is 963 feet (294 m). Wayne County is located in the Pennyrile Plateau (image) and Eastern Coal Field (image) regions of Kentucky.
Wayne County is on Eastern Time; however, its western border, shared with Clinton and Russell Counties, is part of the Eastern/Central time zone boundary, as is its southern border with Pickett County, TN. Wayne County observed Central time until October 2000; an account of this change is documented in an article by Dr. Stanley Brunn of the University of Kentucky.
The county has the tz database zone identifier America/Kentucky/Monticello.
|US Decennial Census|
As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 19,923 people, 7,913 households, and 5,808 families in the county. The population density was 43 per square mile (17/km2). There were 9,789 housing units at an average density of 21 per square mile (8.1/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 96.98% White, 1.49% Black or African American, 0.18% Native American, 0.11% Asian, 0.47% from other races, and 0.78% from two or more races. 1.46% of the population were Hispanic or Latino any race.
There were 7,913 households, out of which 33.40% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.90% were married couples living together, 10.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.60% were non-families. 23.90% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 2.94.
The county population contained 25.30% under the age of 18, 8.90% from 18 to 24, 28.10% from 25 to 44, 24.00% from 45 to 64, and 13.60% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 97.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.90 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $20,863, and the median income for a family was $24,869. Males had a median income of $24,021 versus $18,102 for females. The per capita income for the county was $12,601. About 24.60% of families and 29.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 34.90% of those under age 18 and 31.50% of those over age 64.
Wayne County Schools operates the county's public schools.
On June 30, 2013 Monticello Independent Schools merged into Wayne County schools.
Vocational education in the county has been provided by Wayne County Vocational School from 1971 to the present. Its name has changed several times during that period; it is presently knows as Wayne County Area Technology Center (ATC). It is managed by The Office Of Career And Technical Education. The school serves secondary students enrolled in Wayne County High School. Programs include Health Science, Welding, Carpentry, Machine Tool, Automotive, Industrial Maintenance, and Business.