Fairview, KY
Discovery Trail KY Heritage Tour Heritage Trail
1000-Mile Front
Jefferson Davis Monument The Jefferson Davis Monument State Historic Site is a memorial to the famous Kentuckian born on this site June 3, 1808.

Ironically, just eight months later, and not more than 100 miles away, another great Kentucky statesman was born: Abraham Lincoln. Both men were destined to become Civil War adversaries; Union president, Abraham Lincoln, and Confederate president, Jefferson Davis.

Although Davis is known to most people because of his service as President of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War, he was a reluctant secessionist. Jefferson Davis distinguished himself in politics not only when serving as President of the Confederate States of America, but also as a West Point graduate, Mexican War hero, Mississippi congressman and senator, and Secretary of War during the administration of Franklin Pierce.

Davis left his imprint on the nation in areas other than politics. His credits include:

    • Suggesting that a transcontinental railroad connect the Atlantic with the Pacific;
    • Founding of the Army Medical Corps; ordering that the frontier be surveyed;
    • Suggesting the purchase of the Panama Canal Zone; directing that the West be explored for scientific and geographic purposes;
    • Writing The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government.
Jefferson Davis


In 1907, at a reunion of the Confederate Orphan Brigade, Gen. Simon Bolivar Buckner, a famous Confederate general from Kentucky and former governor of the state, proposed that a monument be built to honor Jefferson Davis at the site of his birthplace.

Contractor C.G. Gregg of Louisville submitted a bid of $75,000 to design and build the monument. In 1917, construction of the world's tallest concrete obelisk began. Monument workers used steam engines to power their equipment, including steam-powered drills.

A quarry was dug on the south end of the 19-acre park site and the stone crushed for use in mixing cement. The monument had reached a height of 175 feet by the fall of 1918, when construction was halted due to rationing of building materials during World War I.

Construction resumed in January 1922 and was completed in 1924 at an increased cost of $200,000. The 351-foot obelisk rests on a foundation of solid Kentucky limestone, and contains walls seven feet thick at the base, tapering to two feet thick where the point inclines. The monument features an elevator to an observation room high atop the structure for a panoramic view of the countryside.

HOURS OF OPERATION: Facilities are seasonal, open May 1 through Oct. 31, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, call (270) 886-1765.

Fairview Map

Kentucky Map

For additional information:

WMTH Corporation, PO Box 51153, Bowling Green, KY 42102