Kentucky became a state in 1792 and just seven years later Livingston County was formed from Christian County, making these the earliest ferry licenses granted in the new county. The ferries across the Ohio River were to Indiana Territory, from which Illinois Territory would be created in 1809. The state of Illinois would not be created until several years later. Some of the ferries across the Cumberland River would today be in Lyon County, which, in 1854, was formed from Caldwell County, which had been created from Livingston in 1809. The following information has been abstracted from Livingston County Court Order Books A, B and C and original county court papers, Livingston County Clerk's Office, Smithland, Kentucky.
26 Mar 1800: Charles Stewart, agent for David Walker permitted to keep a ferry across the Cumberland river at Eddyville and he is allowed 12 1/2 cents for man and horse and 6 1/4 cents for horse alone.
24 Aug 1800: Richard Miles entered into bond with William Mitchusson, his security, in the penalty of 20 pounds and is permitted to keep ferry across the Ohio River at his own house.
24 Aug 1800: James Lusk permitted to keep ferry at his own house across the Ohio River.
5 May 1801: Thomas Gist permitted to keep Tavern at his ferry in Smithland.
7 Jul 1801: James Lusk permitted to keep ferry across the Ohio at his own house at the usual rates and ordered that he keep a good and sufficient boat and good attendance.
2 Feb 1802: Abraham Stokes permitted to keep ferry at his house across Cumberland river.
2 Feb 1802: Gideon D. Cobb obtained license to keep ferry at his own house on Cumberland River.
7 Mar 1803: Robert Kirk permitted to keep a ferry across the Ohio at the mouth of Hurricain Creek.
6 Dec 1803: Wiley Davis permitted to keep a ferry across the Cumberland River from his own land in Eddyville. Joseph McMahan permitted to keep tavern at the ferry of Wiley Davis at the town of Eddyville with Joseph being the ferrykeeper.
2 Jan 1804: Essix Capshaw permitted to keep ferry across Cumberland River at the mouth of Sugar Creek.
3 Jan 1804: Jonathan Burk permitted to keep a ferry across the Ohio at his own house.
7 May 1804: Samuel Burton permitted to keep a ferry across the Cumberland River at his own house.
6 Nov 1804: Richard Forgison permitted to keep ferry from his landing below the mouth of Cumberland across to the island in the Ohio River.
1 Apr 1805: Ferry granted to Richard Forgison below mouth of Cumberland River discontinued.
1 Jul 1805: William Gillihan permitted to keep a ferry at his own house across the Cumberland River at rates of 12 1/2 cents for man and horse and 6 1/4 cents for foot man or led horse.
1 Jul 1805: Richard Forgison granted ferry across from his landing on this side of the Ohio to the Island in the Ohio opposite the mouth of Cumberland and from said Island to the pond above the mouth of Cumberland at 25 cents each for man and horse.
7 Oct 1805: Tilman Powers granted a ferry across Cumberland River at the mouth of Sugar Creek.
6 Jan 1806: Wm. C. Rodgers granted a ferry across the Ohio on his land at the lower end of Hurricain Island.
9 Oct 1806: Wm. Karr granted a ferry on his own land across the Ohio at the place commonly known by the name of Miles ferry.
1 Dec 1806: John Crosswhite granted a ferry across the Cumberland River at the mouth of Clay lick.
6 Jan 1807: James Johnston wishes to establish a ferry on his own land 200 yards above the mouth of Camp Creek which is opposed by George Flin ... motion continued.
27 Jul 1807: Wm. Boggs granted a ferry across Cumberland at the upper end of Bisswells Mount.
4 Apr 1808:Richard Fergerson is desirous of establishing a ferry across the Cumberland river from his landing on the south side across to the point.
7 Nov 1808: James Murray granted a ferry across Cumberland river at the mouth of Eddy Creek.
7 Nov 1808: William E. Philips & Jesse Handley granted a ferry across the Ohio river, they owning the land on this side at the lower end of the Trade water island. Philips & Handley permitted to mark and cut out a road from their ferry from the lower point of the island to intersect the saline road at any place between Flynns ferry & house and barn provided they cut it out at their own expense which is then to be established a public road.
7 Nov 1808: Ferry granted to Jesse Handley across the Tradewater, he owning the land on this side of the upper end of the Tradewater Island
Published 27 March 2008, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/