Soon after the adoption of the new Federal Constitution in 1789, many quasi-republics began the formal process of applying for statehood status. Vermont led the way in 1791, followed shortly by Kentucky in 1792. Kentucky, the "dark and bloody ground" of the Shawnee, Daniel Boone and the Wilderness Road, was highly contested by all sides during the Revolutionary War.

This copper token was probably struck in England between 1792 and 1794. The stylized reverse features a pyramid made of 15 stars joined by chain links surrounded by nine groups of rays in the overall shape of a star. Each small star features a one or two letter abbreviation representing one of the 13 original states plus Vermont and Kentucky. Around this design is the legend: "E PLURIBUS UNUM." The obverse shows a hand holding a scroll bearing the legend:" OUR CAUSE IS JUST." This may refer to Kentucky's struggle to break away from Virginia in order to become an independent state. Around the obverse rim is the legend: "UNANIMITY IS THE STRENGTH OF SOCIETY." The edge of the token is usually plain, but sometimes has the message:" PAYABLE IN LANCASTER, LONDON OR BRISTOL." A scarce variety has an oblique reeded or engrailed edge.

The Kentucky Tokens were most probably intended for the British market as a sort of commemorative coin. As with most tokens of the period, they saw circulation as either half pennies in England or cents in the United States.