There is evidence of American Indian settlement in the area dating back 12,000 years. The first European descendant to settle in Owensboro was frontiersman William Smeathers or Smothers in 1797, for whom the riverfront park is named. The Lewis and Clark Expedition wintered at what is today's Owensboro prior to departing on their famous travels. In 1817, Yellow Banks was formally established under the name Owensborough, and in 1893, the spelling of the name was shortened to its current Owensboro. We are also known for our distillers, mainly of bourbon whiskey. The end of the Second World War brought civil engineering projects, which helped turn Owensboro from a sleepy industrial town into a modern, expanding community by the turn of the 1960s. Many of the projects were set in motion by Johnson, Depp & Quisenberry, a firm of consulting engineers then engaged in a runway redesign at the County Airport; the 'Depp' in question was a member of an old and prodigious Kentucky family which includes the town's most famous son, actor Johnny Depp.
Owensboro is a hidden gem nestled on a scenic bend of the Ohio River in Western Kentucky. Owensboro is industrial, medical, retail and cultural. Our Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton Owensboro hotel is located where the famous Executive Inn Rivermont once shined, right in the heart of Downtown Owensboro.