Lee County, Kentucky
|Lee County, Kentucky|
Lee County courthouse in Beattyville, Kentucky
Location in the state of Kentucky
Kentucky's location in the U.S.
|Named for||Robert E. Lee (1807–1870), Confederate general or Lee County, Virginia.|
|• Total||211.22 sq mi (547 km2)|
|• Land||209.86 sq mi (544 km2)|
|• Water||1.36 sq mi (4 km2), 0.64%|
|• Density||38/sq mi (15/km²)|
|Time zone||Eastern: UTC-5/-4|
Lee County was formed in 1870. Many sources say it was named for General Robert E. Lee, which is certainly possible given that it was formed near the time of Lee's death. On the other hand, this area of Kentucky was strongly pro-Union during the Civil War. Other sources say the County was named for Lee County, Virginia, or for Henry "Light Horse Harry" Lee.
Directions to Lee County, KY
- From Interstate 64, Exit at the Mountain Parkway. Follow the Mountain Parkway, a modern 4-lane superhighway to Exit 33 (Slade/Beattyville). Continue on Kentucky Highway 11 into Lee County.
- From Mountain Parkway westbound, exit at Beattyville exit 43 and follow signs onto Kentucky Highway 11.
- From Interstate 75, Exit at either 90(northbound) or 90A(southbound) Richmond/Irvine. Follow US 25/US 421 (Dr. Robert Martin Bypass) to the intersection of Kentucky Highway 52. Follow KY 52 into Lee County.
- From the South, Follow Kentucky Highway 11 northbound.
According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 211.22 square miles (547.1 km2), of which 209.86 square miles (543.5 km2) (or 99.36%) is land and 1.36 square miles (3.5 km2) (or 0.64%) is water.
Eastern Mountain Coal Fields
Lee County lies within the Eastern Mountain Coal Fields region of Kentucky. The very rugged terrain greatly defines the area. Roughly half of the county lies within the Daniel Boone National Forest. Timber and coal remain economically significant. Harmful effects from strip mining and clear cut logging are still being corrected. The proliferation of kudzu has proved difficult to address. However, with the growing environmental movement and the developing tourism industry more action is being taken.
- Powell County (north)
- Wolfe County (northeast)
- Breathitt County (southeast)
- Owsley County (south)
- Jackson County (southwest)
- Estill County (northwest)
National protected area
- Daniel Boone National Forest (part)
As of the census of 2000, there were 7,916 people, 2,985 households, and 2,122 families residing in the county. The population density was 38 per square mile (15 /km2). There were 3,321 housing units at an average density of 16 per square mile (6.2 /km2). The racial makeup of the county was 95.10% White, 3.79% Black or African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.10% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.06% from other races, and 0.66% from two or more races. 0.37% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 2,985 households out of which 32.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.80% were married couples living together, 12.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.90% were non-families. 26.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.91.
In the county the population was spread out with 22.70% under the age of 18, 9.00% from 18 to 24, 30.30% from 25 to 44, 23.60% from 45 to 64, and 14.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 109.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 111.80 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $18,544, and the median income for a family was $24,918. Males had a median income of $25,930 versus $19,038 for females. The per capita income for the county was $13,325. About 25.20% of families and 30.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 41.00% of those under age 18 and 22.90% of those age 65 or over.
Woody Harrelson Incident
On June 1st 1996 Lee County was pushed in to the National spotlight after actor & comedian Woody Harrelson made a trip to Lee County to protest hemp production rights for farmers in The Commonwealth of Kentucky. Harrelson arrived in Lee County with his Attorney, his Agent and a camera crew from CNN. While at a local hotel Harrelson phoned then Lee County Sheriff Junior Kilburn to advise him of his intentions. Kilburn and Deputy Sheriff Danny Towsend arrived to the location where Harrelson told them he would be. While camera crews we're rolling Harrelson proceded plant 4 hemp seeds in the ground all while Sheriff Kilburn was watching over his shoulder.
Once the seeds were planted, Sheriff Kilburn placed Harrelson under arrest on the charge of cultivating marijuana. Harrelson was booked into the Lee County Jail later that day June 1st 1996 and quickly was released after posting $200 bail. After his release Harrelson would sign autographs and pose with a few deputies for pictures. On August 24th 2000 with the help of his attorney former Kentucky Governor Louie B. Nunn, Harrelson was acquitted of the charges after the jury deliberated for only 25 minutes. 
- Bluegrass, Blackmarket (1994). Directed by Hans Luxemberger. Produced by Headwaters. Whitesburg, Kentucky: Appalshop.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-02-13.
- "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved August 5, 2013.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Census.gov. Retrieved August 5, 2013.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.