Covington's Treasured Licking Riverside Historic District

J.J. Audubon Statue near the Point - Covington, Ky.

The first Europeans to set foot in Covington likely did so at what came to be known to pioneers as "The Point." There, the Ohio and Licking Rivers — as well as Covington, Newport, and Cincinnati — all meet.

Nearly two hundred years since Covington was founded, a great deal of this part of the city would still be familiar to many of its first residents. In fact, Covington's founders built their homes in what is now known as the Licking Riverside Historic District, where the streets are lined with sprawling antebellum estates and townhomes in the Greek Revival, Federal, Queen Anne, High Victorian, Gothic, Italianate, and French Second Empire styles. While much of Covington's early history can be traced to the streets of this neighborhood, it remains one of the most popular tourist attractions in Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati with its appealing walkability, architectural intrigue, and the most perfect views of the rivers and the Cincinnati skyline.

Licking Riverside stretches eight blocks from north to south and boasts important points of history every step of the way. The streets from east to west are named for Kentucky's first five governors, Shelby, Garrard, Greenup, Scott, and Madison (though Shelby served a second term between Scott and Madison, he did not score himself a second spot in Covington's street grid). Daniel Carter Beard, founder of the Sons of Boone which he later integrated into the Boy Scouts, first discovered his love for the outdoors in this neighborhood in the mid-nineteenth century. The parents of President Ulysses S. Grant lived in Covington where Jesse Grant served as Postmaster; their house still stands. United States Senator Richard P. Ernst resided in a corner mansion near the Licking River where a bridge connects Kenton and Campbell Counties.

From the time George Rogers Clark organized his troops here during fights with the Indians, to the time Covington founding father Thomas Carneal built his stunning mansion (which is believed to be the oldest home in Covington today, and is currently for sale), to the Civil War where north truly met south right at this spot, to now where the residences are filled with some of the region's most prominent professionals, Licking Riverside is a living historic treasure and a must-see during any visit to Covington.

Michael Monks is the publisher of The River City News, an online newspaper based in Covington, Kentucky. Check out more of Michael's Licking Riverside photos after the jump: