Manchester, the seat of Clay county, was established along Goose Creek in 1807 as Greenville, named for Green Clay, for whom the county was also named. It was renamed Manchester later that year since there was already a Greenville, Kentucky (in Muhlenberg county). The name Manchester may come from the city in England, reflecting local hopes for a future in industry. The post office opened in 1813 as Clay County Court House. The population in 1990 was 1,634.