The Kentucky National Guard, like other state National Guards, has been known under various names such as state militia, state guard. It has the distinction of being one of the oldest military forces in the United States. Its history dates back to 1775, when Kentucky was known as Fincastle County, a part of western Virginia. The fundamental concept of a state or local Military organization has existed since 1636, when the Colony of Massachusetts formed a regiment of "Trained Bands."
Since its inception, the Kentucky National Guard has not only stood ready as an alert fighting force ready to defend Kentucky and America against those who would destroy our Democratic way of life but this voluntary citizens Army has also served in times of national disaster. The skill and proficiency with which the Guard has served Kentucky further contributes to the fact that it is, and will continue to be, a necessary and indispensable organization for the continuing existence of the Commonwealth.