The McAfee brothers made the first survey of the crossing site and the surrounding area in 1773, and it wasn’t too long after this when, in 1775, brothers Hancock and Willis Lee established their camp along with a small company of men.
The area developed a thriving community, which quickly took advantage of the abundant limestone spring water and the perfect soil for growing grains of exceptional quality. Distillation soon followed and the Kentucky Bluegrass Region’s bourbon-making heritage was born.
Standing on the banks of the famous Kentucky River, the Buffalo Trace Distillery sits at the very point where the river was low enough for the buffalo to cross safely, enabling them to continue their ancient westerly migratory route. This 100 foot wide swath across the land became known as “The Great Buffalo Trace”.
This same migratory route was subsequently followed by influential explorers and legendary pioneers, including Daniel Boone, Lewis & Clark, and many others looking for new opportunities and a better way of life.