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Two New Historical Markers to Celebrate 3L Highway, Ancient Civilizations

Two new historical markers are coming to Kenton County sites, the Kenton County Historical Society announced.

A ceremony is planned for both locations on Sunday, September 26.

One marker will be placed at the intersection of Old Madison Pike and Madison Pike (KY 17) about a quarter mile south of the Waffle House in Ft. Wright. That ceremony begins at 1 p.m.

The mayors of Covington and Ft. Wright are expected to attend along with representatives of the Kentucky Historical Society.

Historian Robert Webster,a former president of the historical society, will present on the significance of the 3-L Highway (KY 17) as part of the ceremony.

Once known as the Independence Turnpike, this stretch of Old Madison Pike was renamed 3L (LLL) Highway in the 1920s, an abbreviation for Louisville, Lexington, and Latonia, and was celebrated as the best route to the state's most popular horse-racing establishments in those cities.

While only signed as the 3-L (white signs with blue Ls) from around 1920 to about 1936, residents in Northern Kentucky, especially those in Kenton County, affectionately refer to this major thoroughfare as the 3-L still today. In fact, several cities along the route still include the unusual and historic name on their official street signs.

The marker is planned to be placed in the grassy field at Old 17 (the original LLL) and Madison Pike in Fort Wright.

A second marker will be placed at around 2 p.m. in Pioneer Park, at the south end near the small shelter, and will honor ancient civilizations.

Local historian Jeannine Kreinbrink will speak on the significance of this marker.

Many ancient civilizations once roamed, hunted, and lived in the Northern Kentucky region, with Native tribes arriving here more than 12,000 years ago, the historical society said in a news release.

Since 1949, the Kentucky Historical Marker program has allowed communities across Kentucky to recognize and share the sites, events, and personalities they consider important to local, regional, state, or national history. 

To date, more than 2,400 markers help to illuminate Kentucky’s complex story. A few years ago, the Kenton County Historical Society decided to make it part of their mission to add to the number of markers found here. 

Marker applications are only reviewed by the Kentucky Historical Society twice a year, so timing is everything.  The marker review committee considers the historical relevance, significance, location, and community support of marker applications.

The Kentucky Historical Society approved the two new markers for Kenton County. They were funded through the the Community Foundation of Southern Indiana and the David J. Reinhardt Family, the Wells Family Trust, Karl Lietzenmayer, Bob Webster, and many other contributor.

Founded in 1977, the mission of the Kenton County Historical Society is the promotion, preservation, research, and dissemination of Kenton County history and genealogy, especially as it relates to the larger community.

-Staff report

Photo via Kenton Co.