Frankfort, Kentucky's State Capital, is located in Franklin County northwest of Lexington. It lies along U.S. Highway 127 on the banks of the Kentucky River. The river divides Frankfort into north and south sections. The north side includes the older residential section and the Old Capitol. The New Capitol and the Executive Mansion stand in the southern section. Frankfort is often called the Bluegrass Capital due to its central location in the Bluegrass region.
In 1751, the area was explored by English adventurers. Settlement commenced in the 1780s. The name is believed to derive from Stephen Frank, a settler killed at what would be known as Frank's Ford. The town was established in 1786 as Frankfort, Va., and became the capital of the new state of Kentucky in 1792. The Frankfort post office opened in 1794.
Frankfort's population is 27,741, an increase of about 1,773 since 1990. The city is known for its whiskey distilling industry. Kentucky State University is located here.