Chartered as the county seat of Harrison County in 1793 and built on the land of early settler Robert Harrison, Cynthiana was named for Harrison's daughters Cynthia and Anna. The city, listed as a historic district in the National Register of Historic Places, has the second-largest collection of buildings with mid 19th century cast iron storefronts in Kentucky. These outstanding examples of Federal-style architecture have survived from the community's earliest years.
Battles were fought at Cynthiana twice during the Civil War, and the Cynthiana's Chamber of Commerce has developed a Civil War Driving Tour of associated sites. Cynthiana participates in the Kentucky Main Street Program and the Renaissance Kentucky Program and for the past several years, reenactments of the battles have been held. Other annual community events include Museum Grist Mill Day at the Cynthiana-Harrison County Museum and Raggedy Ann Day, which recognizes Cynthiana's association with the family of the famous doll's creator, Johnny Gruelle.
The Cynthiana-Harrison County Museum is housed in a historic theater in Cynthiana. Displays document Cynthiana and Harrison County history of education, military, agriculture, industry, religion, and medicine. The museum also includes scale models of the city of Cynthiana.
For more information see www.preserveamerica.gov/4-20-04PAcommunity-cynthianaKY.html and www.cynthianaky.com.