HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) – Not only does Posey County have a rich history, but it also has one of the largest inland ports in the country.

According to the Indiana Archives and Records Administration (IARA), Posey County was named in honor of Thomas Posey, who was an officer during the French and Indian and Revolutionary wars, and Governor of Indiana Territory from 1813 to 1816. The county seat of Posey County is Mt. Vernon.

IARA says Posey County was formed from parts of Gibson and Warrick Counties in 1814. IARA says the county was once part of Knox County and got its present boundaries when Vanderburgh County was formed from parts of Gibson, Warrick, and Posey Counties. Officials say the boundaries of Posey County were altered for the last time on January 6, 1823, when a strip of Gibson was affixed to Posey.

The Visit Posey County website says some notable people from Posey County include George Rapp, who established the first Utopian community in New Harmony. IARA says after the Rappite departure, settlement continued when Robert Owen and William Maclure established New Harmony in January, 1825. According to the Indiana Historical Bureau, Alvin P. Hovey, a governor of Indiana, was born and educated in Mt. Vernon. The bureau says Hovey attained distinction as a lawyer, judge, Civil War general, diplomat and congressman, and was buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery.

The Visit Posey County website says current-day Posey County was a trade center for several Native American cultures for nearly two thousand years, and the county later became an important center for the fur trade. Officials say Mount Vernon grew into an industrial and transportation powerhouse and one of the largest inland ports in the country providing a hub for agricultural, industrial and energy transport. 

According to the Southwest Indiana Development Council, the port is called The Port of Indiana-Mount Vernon. Officials with the development council say the port is home to one of the largest maritime greenfield properties available in the Midwest region of the U.S. Officials say the port is especially suitable for heavy industrial facilities requiring access to barge, rail and truck transportation. Officials say the site is also located within what the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers ranks as the sixth largest inland port district in the country.

According to the Southwest Indiana Chamber of Commerce, the main companies in Posey County include SABIC Innovative Plastics, Astrazeneca, WSI, Consolidated Grain and Barge, Bwxt Nuclear Operations Group and CountryMark.

According to the United States Census Bureau, as of the 2020 census, the population of Posey County was 25,222.

This is the third of a weekly twenty-one-part series that will help educate about each of the counties in the Eyewitness News viewing area. Check in every Tuesday at 9 a.m. for the next one! Last week’s story can be found here.