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Visitor's Center Appalachian frontiersmen have long been romanticized for their ruggedness and self-sufficiency. A typical depiction of an Appalachian pioneer involves a hunter wearing a coonskin cap and buckskin clothing, and sporting a long rifle and shoulder-strapped powder horn. Perhaps no single figure symbolizes the Appalachian pioneer more than Daniel Boone — , a long hunter and surveyor instrumental in the early settlement of Kentucky and Tennessee.

Like Boone, Appalachian pioneers moved into areas largely separated from "civilization" by high mountain ridges, and had to fend for themselves against the elements. As many of these early settlers were living on Native American lands, attacks from Native American tribes were a continuous threat until the 19th century.


As early as the 18th century, Appalachia then known simply as the "backcountry" began to distinguish itself from its wealthier lowland and coastal neighbors to the east. Frontiersmen often bickered with lowland and tidewater "elites" over taxes, sometimes to the point of armed revolts. In , at the height of the American Revolution, backwoodsmen from Pennsylvania, Virginia, and what is now Kentucky took part in George Rogers Clark's Illinois campaign. Two years later, a group of Appalachian frontiersmen known as the Overmountain Men routed British forces at the Battle of Kings Mountain after rejecting a call by the British to disarm.

After the war, residents throughout the Appalachian backcountry refused to pay a tax placed on whiskey by the new American government, leading to what became known as the Whiskey Rebellion. Stay In Clay. Stay In Clay County Kentucky Experience Kentucky Elk Country. Discover Appalachia In Clay County. Discover Our Native American Heritage. City of Manchester Manchester is a tightly-packed little town arranged around the town square, Court House hill and north and south entries.

The town has an old-fashioned, "real town" feel about it, but is also graced with handsome, modern structures on all sides. Visit the city parks, Veterans Memorial, Town Square, shops and restaurants. Heritage Pavilion and Goose Salt Works contain interpretive signs outlining the county's history. An ongoing mural project depicts the county's rich Appalachian heritage, visitors can brave the Goose Creek Swinging Bridge and a community folk-life theater, Monkey Dumplin's, empowers individuals to capture and tell their family stories.

Discover Appalachia off the beaten trail in wonderfully wild, breathtakingly beautiful Oneida, Kentucky. Winding mountain roads feature family farms, roadside stands, small country stores, hilltop cemeteries, historic weathered barns and swinging bridges. Oneida is a natural, backcountry paradise for those who want to experience the peace and adventures of raw, untamed nature. A hamlet, or unincorporated community, is a small settlement in a rural area.

These historic gems are home to early structures, unbridled natural beauty, wildlife, family businesses and farms, and the people who have preserved the customs of their ancestors. Natural wonders and fascinating, warm, friendly people await you. The Land Of Swinging Bridges Clay County's swinging bridges are historical pedestrian bridges towering above the rivers and creeks. During floods they were one of the only ways to cross the waterways.

In some remote areas of Clay County, this is still true today. These suspension footbridges are often called swinging bridges because the bridge sways beneath your feet as you walk across. They are also referred to as rope bridges due to their historical origin based on the ancient Inca rope bridge. Swinging bridges would span a wide river without the need for foundation pillars in the middle.

This meant there was no obstruction to river traffic and no danger of the pier being damaged during floods.

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They were also cheaper to build than pier designs. Typical construction would start with a ball of twine to judge the curve and distance. The upright piers were constructed first before being pulled into position by men in boats or on horses or mules.

Melissa McIntosh (Editor of Billy Jake Boone and the Indian Mound)

The cable was then dragged across by hand using a wheel or pulley. Men would mix cement and haul river gravel and timbers from local farms. Visit Clay County Kentucky, the Land of Swinging Bridges, and discover the romance, history and adventure of these cherished swinging bridges. Swinging Bridges Driving Tour.

Mount Tabor Indian Community

Taking place Memorial Day Weekend, Manchester will be humming with the sounds of bluegrass music, beauty of the mountains, and the smell of local cuisine. Saltworks Appalachian Homecoming Fest.

Located in the heart of white-tailed deer, wild turkey and elk country, Clay County provides unlimited opportunities for wildlife viewing. Clay County is also the gateway to the "Redbud Capital of Kentucky. In the wild, eastern redbud is a frequent native understory tree in mixed forests and hedgerows. The flowers are showy, light to dark magenta pink in color, and appear in clusters from Spring to early Summer on bare stems before the leaves.

The flowers are pollinated by long-tongued bees such as blueberry bees and carpenter bees. After the redbud bloom, dogwood flowers decorate the county fence rows, followed soon after by sarvis blooms. With the combination of beautiful mountain forests, natural streams and other outdoor recreation opportunities, Manchester is the perfect trail town. These streams provide excellent paddling opportunities for visitors. There are also hiking, camping, ATV trails, horseback trails and cycling routes in the area.

With miles and miles of trails, a day or weekend would not begin to be enough time to cover even a portion of the trails offered in our mountains. Our trails range from easy to extreme with an abundance of wildlife to view and a population of Elk that is plentiful. It is very common to see herds of Elk as you ride through the moutains of Clay County. Come on home to Clay County for your next ATV vacation, where new adventures await and memories last a lifetime. The Y-Hollow is primitive camping only.

Elk Mountain is an area of over a acres. The mountain offers restrooms and covered shelter and primitive camping.

Old Time Fiddle Tunes

Challenge yourself with trails, mud, rocks and hills. The park also offers dirt drag racing under the lights. Tent and RV camping and cabins are available. Located near Big Creek, the trail generally follows the ridge with some steep and rough areas. There are some areas so narrow that only single track vehicles can drive on them. These two rivers come together to form the South Fork of the Kentucky River.

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The South Fork River has wide banks and creates a perfect river for spending a lazy day tubing, hitting the narrows on a kayak, or paddling a canoe. The forest encompasses over , acres of mostly rugged terrain. The land is characterized by steep forested ridges dissected by narrow ravines and over 3, miles of sandstone cliffs. Daniel Boone National Forest is one of the most heavily used forests in the South, with over 5 million visitors annually. People come here to backpack, camp, picnic, rock climb, boat, ride and relax.

Millions of visitors come to enjoy the scenic Appalachian beauty and abundant wildlife that the forest has to offer. Over miles of trails provide a quiet escape to more remote places within the forest. Hikers, horseback riders and other trail users get back to nature along the mile Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail that extends the entire length of the Daniel Boone. Hundreds of miles of winding rivers and streams provide the finishing touch in outdoor Appalachian beauty.

Come and discover what you've been missing. Daniel Boone National Forest is a haven to many species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and other wildlife including: black bears, deer, bobcats, chipmunks, squirrels, elk, fox, shrews, voles, opossums, skunks, raccoons, rabbits, wild turkeys, woodchucks, songbirds, hawks, owls, eagles, bats, vultures, hummingbirds, turtles, snakes, lizards, frogs, toads, salamanders and treefrogs. The Appalachian forest consists of sloping hills, ridge top flats, narrow valleys, hardwood forests, bottom wildlands and miles of rivers and streams.

The Appalachian forest contains three large lakes Cave Run Lake, Laurel River Lake and Lake Cumberland , many rivers and streams, two wilderness areas, and the mile Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail that extends across the length of the forest. Abundant wildlife, lush vegetation, magnificent scenery and numerous recreation opportunities offer visitors much to enjoy.

Please practice Trail Safety and Leave No Trace to make your visit safe and enjoyable while protecting resources we all enjoy. Most national forest system lands are open and free of charge for your use and enjoyment. Entrance and user fees may be charged at some areas. Monkey Dumplins Story Bridge Theater A story is born, a story is "growed", and then it is harvested, so it can be told We gather them together, with little muss and fuss, to present "Monkey Dumplin's", the story of US.

Monkey Dumplins Story Bridge Theater harvests local stories by teaching the art of story telling, then capturing and performing the fascinating oral history of Clay County on stage. Monkey Dumplins draws people with varied backgrounds and beautifully interweaves their many creative talents.