Licking River Ice Gorge of 1856

On February 24, 1856 a deep gorge had formed at the mouth of the Licking River during the month and ice continued to pile up until it towered 20 feet high.  While the ice in the Ohio was run out gently, heavy rains at the source of the Licking sent a strong freshet down from the mountains of Eastern Kentucky.  The force of the current dislodged the ice mass at the confluence of the two rivers and sent it across the Ohio to the public landing.  The steamers nosed up to the shore which were either sunk and heavily damaged included: The Yorktown, Madora, Albertine, Bridge City, Flag, Salem, Crescent, Grapeshot, Jacob Traber, Forest Queen, and Wisconsin.  Nine black stevedores lost their lives while taking freight from the hold of the Flag.


from Kentucky Heritage, Volume 1, Number 2.