On June 7, 1769, frontiersman Daniel Boone first saw the forests and valleys of present-day Kentucky. For more than a century, the Kentucky Historical Society has celebrated June 7 as "Boone Day."
Born on November 2, 1734, in Berks County, Pennsylvania, Daniel Boone spent much of his youth hunting and trapping on the North Carolina frontier.* By the late 1760s, Boone had ventured into the Cumberland Gap region, which was little known to whites. Although the westward opening in the Appalachian Mountains had been identified by Virginian explorer Thomas Walker in 1750, the French and Indian War discouraged exploration and settlement of the Kentucky territory. After the war, lacking the manpower or resources to protect their empire's trans-Appalachian frontier, the British prohibited westward migration. Boone was among the many settlers who ignored the Crown's ban.