Stamping Ground History
View Stamping Ground's virtual visitors guide HERE.
A name trampled in the dust: Stamping Ground
Stamping Ground was named for a noise: the stamping of hundreds of hooves of impatient buffalo waiting to drink from Buffalo Spring. The bowl-shaped basin is actually one of Kentucky’s three major “stamping grounds” sitting at the junction of trails used by migrating herds.
Adventurers Will McConnell and Charles LeCompte discovered Buffalo Spring in 1775 and called it Buffalo Stamping Ground. It is located on an ancient migratory path the Native Americans called Alant-I-wamiowee, or buffalo path – a wide swath of land cut into forest that has left a permanent imprint at the spring. This path was also used by the Mound Builders and, later, pioneer settlers.
The Alant-I-wamiowee is likely the roadbed that forms the road from Stamping Ground toward Georgetown, where migrating herds would ford Elkhorn Creek at a place known as the Great Crossing.
Sometime around 1790, a fort was built by Anthony Lindsay. Located near LeCompte’s Run – a branch of the Elkhorn named for Charles – it became the first settlement in Stamping Ground and kicked off a series of firsts, including the establishment of McConnell’s Church in 1795 and the Post Office in 1814. By 1880, Stamping Ground had four stores and about 300 people.
Although the population has more than doubled, present-day Stamping Ground is a quiet, historic community surrounded by beautiful countryside.
A source for the research for this history was Scott County Kentucky – A History, published in 1993 by The Scott County Historical Society, Georgetown, KY. Lindsey Apple, Frederick A. Johnston and Ann Bolton Bevins, editors.