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History

Founded in 1827 by William Clark of Lewis & Clark fame, Paducah's rich American heritage can be traced to its strategic location at the confluence of the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers. Today, visitors can take a journey on America's inland waterways from the era of Paducah's earliest inhabitants to the City's modern day life on the river through captivating stories, interactive exhibits and music at the River Discovery Center.

From the Civil War to civil rights, Paducah's narrative is intricately connected to America's history. Visit the Lloyd Tilghman House & Civil War Museum to learn about Paducah's pivotal role during the Civil War. The Hotel Metropolitan provides a look at the lives of famous African American guests during the time of segregation.

Paducah's history is reflected and preserved in its architecture and historic attractions, including the 1905 Market House, Market House Museum and "Wall to Wall" Murals.

 

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Hotel Metropolitan

  • 724 Oscar Cross Dr.
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 443-7918
  • Region: Upper Town
Restored African-American heritage museum hosted famous African-American sports figures and entertainers, including Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and B.B. King, prior to desegregation. The 1908… more

Legendary Chief Paduke Statue

  • 19th & Jefferson St.
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Region: Mid Town
Legend has it that General William Clark, who founded Paducah, named it in honor of the "Padouca" Indians, a subtribe of the Chickasaw who lived and hunted in the area until the Jackson Purchase in… more

Lloyd Tilghman House & Civil War Museum

  • 631 Kentucky Avenue
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 575-5477
  • Region: Historic Downtown
Former residence of Gen. Lloyd Tilghman, CSA and West Point graduate, highlights western Kentucky's role in the War Between the States. The 1852 Greek Revival home is owned by Sons of Confederate… more

Paducah "Wall To Wall" Murals

  • Water Street, Jefferson-Washington Sts.
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 443-8783
  • Region: Historic Downtown
Named the most popular tourist attraction in Kentucky by Trip Advisor in 2014, Portraits from Paducah's Past present a public art experience available at all hours. More than 50 life-sized panoramic… more

Paducah Cell Phone Walking Tour

  • 128 Broadway
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 854-3050
Just dial, listen and experience Paducah's rich history through the many historic and architectural treasures of earlier times.… more

Paducah Railroad Museum

  • 200 Washington Street
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 908-6451
  • Region: Historic Downtown
A project of the Paducah Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society showcases equipment and memorabilia from the romantic past of America's railroads. New simulator gives the sensation of… more

Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial

  • 1900 Park Ave.
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Region: Mid Town
Monument commemorates the life of Dr. King.… more

River Discovery Center

  • 117 S. Water St.
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 575-9958
  • Region: Historic Downtown
Celebrate Paducah's maritime legacy and lore with interactive water-filled exhibits, including a working model of a lock and dam. Captain a towboat, pleasure watercraft of Coast Guard buoy tender… more

Steam Locomotive No. 1518

  • So. Water Street & Kentucky Avenue
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Region: Historic Downtown
A Mikado steam engine, the last "Iron Horse" used by the I.C.R.R., serves as a memorial to the passage of the Steam Age.… more

Wacinton Indian

  • 2915 Park Avenue ,Noble Park
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Region: Mid Town
View Wacinton, a hand-carved wooden statue, that stands near the entrance of Noble Park, 2915 Park Ave. A 56,000-pound red oak carved by Peter "Wolf" Toth in 1985 honoring the Chickasaw who claimed… more

Whitehaven Welcome Center

  • Exit 7 Off Interstate 24 On Highway 45 ,1845 Lone Oak Road
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 554-2077
  • Region: Lone Oak
Restored 1860s Southern mansion features period furnishings and memorabilia of Paducah native Alben Barkley, who served as Vice President under Harry Truman. Whitehaven is one of the finest Classical… more

William Clark Market House Museum

  • 121 S. 2nd St. (1905 Historic Market House)
    Paducah, KY 42001
  • Phone: (270) 443-7759
  • Region: Historic Downtown
Artifacts from Paducah's past are staged within the meticulously reconstructed elaborate gingerbread woodwork of an 1876 drugstore. Exhibits are chaned annually. Open first Saturday in March thru… more
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Paducah Convention & Visitors Bureau • 128 Broadway, Paducah, KY 42001 • 1.800.PADUCAH