The Beginning of Jeffersontown

In the late 1770s, the Kentucky ridge, on which Jeffersontown would be built, was still the forest home of deer, elk, wildcats, and bears. Buffalo lumbered along ancient forest trails on their way to salt licks. Indians also hunted here.

But by the late 1790's, this area rang with the sounds of settlers whose wagons rumbled over rutted dirt roads as they moved eastward from Louisville toward their newly claimed land. This movement created natural crossroads on the ridge and early entrepreneurs soon set up shop.
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In 1794, Abraham Bruner saw the potential for a town, purchased a ridge, and divided a 40-acre tract into streets and lots. On May 3, 1797, the Jefferson County Court officially established the Town of Jefferson, now Jeffersontown, although most of its inhabitants called it Brunerstown. 

Shops & Merchants

Jeffersontown developed into a friendly village where dusty streets and stone sidewalks gave entry into the shops and well-kept homes of prosperous merchants. George Doup's brewery was located where he could take advantage of the town's spring-fed pond. In Adam Hoke's tobacco shop, his six daughters rolled fine cigars. Mr. Baringer wove cloth, and Fred Stucky was the town's skilled tailor. There were stonecutters, wheelwrights, a saddler, and other craftsmen whose quality wares supplied the surrounding countryside and even some stores in Louisville. 

Change came slowly, but in the late 1800s the Louisville and Taylorsville Pike, a broken rock road, replaced the former dirt road through town. The Southern Railroad built a depot and in 1903 the Electric Railway, or Interurban, established a route from Louisville to Jeffersontown's public square. 

Booming Business & Population

In the 1950s, Taylorsville Road was widened and General Electric's Appliance Park was opened, bringing new residents to the area. In the following decade, the interchange at I-64 and Hurstbourne Lane put downtown Louisville within easy reach. The Bluegrass Industrial Park was constructed and in 1972 a 700-acre dairy farm became a planned community of homes, apartments, stores, and offices. 

By the time the town celebrated its bicentennial in 1997, more than 25,000 people lived in Jeffersontown, and over 33,000 worked in the Bluegrass Industrial Park, making Jeffersontown the third largest employer in the state and the second largest city in Jefferson County. 

From Jeffersontown, Kentucky - The First 200 Years