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Leslie County in Kentucky was organized from parts of Clay, Harlan and Perry Counties in 1878 and is named for Preston H. Leslie who was governor of Kentucky from 1871 to 1875. Hyden, Kentucky is the county seat of Leslie County. Hyden was founded in 1878 and named for state Senator John Hyden (1814-1883), then state senator from Clay County and one of the commissioners appointed to establish Leslie County.

The Sizemore family was the first settlers to live on the land at the mouth of Rockhouse Creek on the Middle Fork of the Kentucky River, where the town of Hyden is located. John Sizemore sold the land to the John Lewis Family. The land was later donated to the county and Hyden was founded there on the site of John Lewis's farm. Hyden is served by US 421, KY 80, and the Daniel Boone Parkway. The Hyden post office opened in 1879 with Leander Crawford as Postmaster.