The Filson Historical Society Digital Projects

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    Martin D. Hardin (1780-1823) was born in Pennsylvania and migrated with his family to Kentucky in 1786. He studied law under George Nicholas, who is credited with writing Kentucky's first constitution upon becoming a state in 1792. Hardin served as a militia major in the War of 1812 and was a politician. He served as Secretary of State under Governor Isaac Shelby from 1812-1816. He represented Madison County and later Franklin County in the Kentucky Legislature in 1805-1806, 1812, 1818-1820. He also briefly served as a United States Senator, 1816-1817. He was married Elizabeth Logan, daughter of Kentucky pioneer Benjamin Logan, in 1809. They had four children before his death at age forty-three.

    Elizabeth Logan Hardin (1786-1853) was born on the Kentucky frontier at Logan's Station (also known as St. Asaph's; present Stanford). She was one of nine children of Ann Montgomery and Benjamin Logan, one of Kentucky's early military and political leaders. who fought in the Indian wars of the 1770s and 1780s in the struggle to wrest control of Kentucky from the Native Americans. Elizabeth married Martin D. Hardin on 20 January 1809. At age thirty-nine, Elizabeth became a pregnant widow with three children between the ages of five and thirteen, and a failing farm (near Frankfort) that was $50,000 in debt. Elizabeth ran the farm as a single woman for seven years before she married Porter Clay in 1816. They sold the farm and moved to Illinois, but their strained marriage ended in separation. She returned to Kentucky and died in Shelby County where she is buried.
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