Tag Archives: General John Hunt Morgan

First Marriage Bond in Marion County after the Burning of the Courthouse

One of the most sorrowful phrases a genealogist might hear is, ‘The courthouse burned in . . .’  Such is the phrase we must start with in Marion County.  Marion was formed from Washington County on January 25, 1834.  So any marriage certificate, will, deed, etc., before that date will be in Washington County.  For the first 29 1/2 years of its existence as a county, the Marion County records are lost to us.

During the Civil War there were many battles in the state of Kentucky, even though we were a border state.  During July of 1863 General John Hunt Morgan began one of his raids through Kentucky, and on the 5th of the month arrived at the small town of Lebanon.  When the Union soldiers of the town heard the Confederates were coming Lt. Col. Charles Hanson ordered his small band of 350-400 men behind barricades of overturned wagons and anything else that could be used.  As in many cases of the border states Lt. Col. Hanson had a brother that was a Confederate general.  Morgan gave the chance for surrender, but the troops would not.  In the ensuing fray three men from Lebanon were killed, several wounded, one of which later died from those wounds.

After the final surrender, Morgan was enraged that his nineteen year old brother, Lt. Thomas Morgan, was killed.  He burned twenty buildings in the town, including the courthouse.  One of the older homes in Lebanon, now known as Myrtledene, which serves as a bed and breakfast, was the headquarters for General Morgan while he was in Lebanon.  After the death of his brother he charged into the home on his horse and rode up the staircase, imprinting the stairs with the hooves of his horse.  Those imprints remained until the 1950’s when the imprints were sanded out and the staircase covered in carpet!  When I was a young girl I always wanted to visit that house to see the evidence of General Morgan’s ride – never realizing it had already been erased!

Nineteen days after the battle, the first marriage bond was issued to Samuel Cameron and Sarah J. Shofner.  Could there have been other marriages within those 19 days?  Possibly, but this is the first marriage bond in the new courthouse books.  The form for the marriage bonds in Marion County are different from those of Washington – luckily they give us more information about about the couple, including the age and place of birth, including place of birth of mother and father, and occupation of the groom.

img_0888When I visited Lebanon last Thursday I went to the new Courthouse, built just a few years ago.  It’s quite a beautiful building, located at 223 North Spalding Avenue.

img_0894The old courthouse is now the Marion County Heritage Center, which houses the Marion County Historical Society and several other history related centers.  A couple of years ago I attended a book signing for Marion County authors that was held there!

Marion County is also known for its Ham Days event held the last full weekend in September.  Ritchey and I plan to be there on the 24th of the month for the country ham breakfast, arts and crafts and just a day of fun!

scan201Marriage Bond

The Commonwealth of Kentucky

Be it known, that we, Samuel Cameron as principal, and James Moffet as surety, are jointly and severally bound to the Commonwealth of Kentucky, in the sum of One Hundred Dollars.

The Condition of this Bond is as follows:

That, whereas Marriage is intended to be solemnized between the above bound Samuel Cameron and Miss Sarah J. Shofner.  Now, if there is no lawful cause to obstruct said marriage, this bond shall be void, otherwise it shall remain in full force and effect.

Dated at Lebanon, Marion County, this 24th day of July 1863.

Samuel Cameron, James Moffet

Attest:  James R. Henry, Deputy Clerk, Marion County Court

scan207Date of marriage was July 25, 1863.  Samuel Cameron, aged 21 years on the 1st of June 1863, first marriage, farmer and soldier, born in Spencer County, Indiana, parents born in Kentucky.

Sarah J. Shofner, 22 years old, first marriage, born in Green County, Kentucky, parents born in the United States.  Brides consent proven by oath of James Moffet, subscribing witness.

To be married at James Moffet’s on 25 day of July 1863.

I certify that the above is correct to the best of my knowledge and belief.  Witness my hand, this 24 day of July 1863.

Samuel Cameron

Attest:  James Moffett


Hillside Cemetery – Bracken County

IMG_4263Hillside Cemetery in Augusta, Bracken County, Kentucky, is an apt name!  Some of the graves are on the steep side of the hill – not sure how a funeral procession could easily maneuver a casket to its burial site!  The above picture was taken about halfway up the hill to give you a view of the beautiful Ohio River!

IMG_4329 1Turn around and this is the view!  Straight up!  Some of the stones have props to keep them upright – but after years of weather they are starting to lean.

The land for the city of Augusta was originally a Revolutionary War grant given to Captain Philip Buckner, who visited the area in 1781.  In 1786 he returned with 40 Virginia families.  He gave land for the city and it was named for his home – Augusta County, Virginia.  Augusta is still small – in the 2010 census there was a population of 1,190.


Catherine Contee Keith, wife of Dr. A. D. Keith, born in Alexandria, Virginia, August 21, 1783, died December 23, 1860, aged 77 years, 4 months and 2 days.


Our mother, Alcey, wife of Joshua Furber, born March 31, 1786, died November 17, 1867.


William Orr, born December 26, 1796, died September 27, 1869.


Susan, wife of William Orr, died November 28, 1852, aged 62 years, 7 months and 20 days.

IMG_4306This is a memorial to the Union soldiers who died during the Civil War.  The Grand Army of the Republic was a fraternal organization of Union veterans of the war.  Small markers are often beside veterans’ graves.

IMG_4307 1During war the hammer and anvil symbolism deals with the total destruction or capture of an enemy force.  In a cemetery the anvil represents martyrdom and the hammer the power of creation.

The Battle of Augusta was fought September 27, 1862, when Colonel Basil Duke led part of General John Hunt Morgan’s raiders to Augusta to take the war across the Ohio River and into the northern states.  After two Union gunboats were driven off due to bombardment, Duke expected a quick surrender.  But the Home Guard met the Confederates with a hail of gunfire, and eventually hand to hand fighting as the rebels forced their way into homes and businesses.  Duke wrote, “The hand-to-hand fighting in the houses . . . was the fiercest and hottest I ever saw.  I witnessed in some of them the floors piled with corpses and blood trickling down the stairways.”  Although the Home Guard eventually surrendered, the number of  Confederate casualties made Duke abandon the idea of taking the war to Northern soil.  Therefore the citizens stand at the Battle of Augusta kept the Confederate invasion confined to Kentucky in 1862.

For more information on the battle you might like to read Morgan’s Cavalry and the Home Guard at Augusta, Kentucky.


Alex Case, born July 16, 1813, died July 27, 1894.


Johnson B. Moneyhon, born September 27, 1811, died February 24, 1872.

IMG_4318 1H. Jane, wife of W. J. Rankins, born December 1, 1831, died July 22, 1878.  Charles Henry, son of W. J. and H. J. Rankins, born December 3, 1872, died October 6, 1872.


This was taken from the top of the knoll.  It is a very narrow space, perhaps twenty or thirty feet (I’m not great at estimations!), and each side slopes down as you can see on the right.  This is only a quick view of Hillside Cemetery – we will return again on another day.


Joseph Thomas Curd and Malinda Corn Curd Buried at Shawnee Run Baptist

When searching for the obituary of Malinda Curd I became very confused!  I found two, one from 1911 and one from 1912.  The first listed her as Mrs. Joseph Curd, the second as Mrs. Malinda Curd.  I checked my photos and the person I was looking for died in 1911.  To make a small story short – she died December 26th of 1911.  One obituary was written within a couple of days; the next obituary, in the January 12, 1912, issue of The Harrodsburg Herald!  Sometimes a quick glance is not enough!

What a lovely stone!  One of the Woodmen of the World – a beautiful joining of two lives – as two trees!

IMG_9281from The Harrodsburg Herald, Mercer County, Kentucky

Friday, December 29, 1911

Death of a Good Woman

Mrs. Joseph Curd, one of the best known, best loved women of the Curdsville vicinity, died Wednesday morning, after a lingering illness, of a complication of diseases.  Funeral services were conducted at the home by Rev. W. D. Moore and the interment took place in the family burying ground nearby.  Mrs. Curd was about 64 years of age and had been a life long member of the Shawnee Run Baptist Church.  She was a kind, gentle woman, a good neighbor and a friend to all.  She is survived by her aged husband to whom the sympathy of the entire community and his wide circle of friends goes out, and two sons, John and A. W. Curd, and two daughters, Mrs. D. King and Mrs. James Campbell

Friday, January 12, 1912

Mrs. Malinda Curd, wife of J. T. Curd, died at her home, some three miles from Burgin, Tuesday afternoon, December 26th, at 20 minutes past 5 o’clock.  She was born, May 3, 1841, and was, therefore, in the 71st year of her age.  Her maiden name was Poore, her father’s family consisting of seven children, only two of whom are now living, Mrs. Hackley and Mrs. Hamilton, of Garrard County.  She was married to J. T. Curd, at her father’s home, by Rev. S. Cook, May 1st, 1862, and had she lived a few months longer, they would have walked the path of life together 50 years.  The troubles incident to life were theirs, just as they belong to all, but truly this union was a happy one.  They lived for each other, and were never happier than when in each others company.  To them were born 5 children, four of whom survive her, A. W. and John R. Curd, Mrs. James Campbell and Mrs. W. D. King, all of them of Mercer County.  The other daughter, Mrs. Sarah Campbell, died some few years ago.

Mrs. Curd became a member of Shawnee Run Church, of which her husband for many years has been a deacon, about 40 years ago, having been baptized by the same preacher who married her, Rev. S. Cook.  for 18 years I have been her pastor and I can truly say she has been faithful to her Lord and to the church.  She loved the house of God and was always there when it was possible.

She was extremely unselfish, living for the welfare of her family and community.  She always had a good word for everyone.  She saw virtues instead of vices.  She was kind to all, cheerful to the last, and deeply pious.  Mrs. Curd was indeed a devoted wife, a good mother, and a kind friend.  The hungry never left her door unfed.  None knew her but to love her.  Her pastor will sadly miss her, as well as all who knew her.  She was buried in the Shawnee Run burial ground December 28th, after services by the writer, in the presence of a large concourse of friends and relatives.             W. D. Moore

IMG_9282from The Harrodsburg Herald, Mercer County, Kentucky

Friday, July 5, 1935

Joseph Thomas Curd, highly esteemed citizen of east Mercer County, who had almost reached the century mark, died Thursday, June 28, at his home near Curdsville.  He was a native of this county and had lived his entire life in the same section.  Born March 15, 1839, he was nearing his 100th birthday with remarkable vigor, until recently the years took their toll of his strength.  About 86 years ago he united with the Shawnee Run Baptist Church, in which he has been an honored member and for over 50 years a deacon.  He attended services regularly until about a year ago.  He was the son of John and Mary Munday Curd.

He enlisted in the Union Army in the War Between the States in May 1862, leaving a wife of three weeks, who was Miss Malinda Corn, Garrard County.  He was assigned to Company F, 11th Kentucky Cavalry, under Captain Frank Wolford and was in many skirmishes in Kentucky, several against the men of General John Hunt Morgan.  He also took part in the Battle of Knoxville.  He received an honorable discharge in June, 1865.

Following the death of his first wife, December 26, 1911, he was married to Miss Ann Witt, of Boyle County, in 1913, who died April 19, 1930.  Surviving are four children by his first marriage, Mrs. W. D. King, with whom he made his home; Mrs. James Campbell, Burgin; J. R. Curd, of Danville; Col. A. W. Curd, of Tucson, Arizona, who arrived here a few days before his father died.  Fourteen grandchildren and the same number of great-grandchildren also survive.

The funeral was held at 10 o’clock Saturday morning at the Shawnee Run Baptist Church, near Burgin, conducted by the Rev. W. D. Moore, of Anderson County, a former pastor for over 30 years of Shawnee Run Church, and a long time personal friend of “Uncle Jody”.  The Rev. G. Whitcomb Ellers, pastor of the Harrodsburg Baptist Church, assisted in the service.  Burial was in Shawnee Run Cemetery.

IMG_9280Joseph T. Curd, March 15, 1839 – June 27, 1935.    Malinda, his wife, May 3, 1841 – December 26, 1911.  Shawnee Run Baptist Cemetery, Mercer County, Kentucky.

Old Confederates of Mercer County

A Confederate soldier stands atop a monument in Spring Hill Cemetery in Harrodsburg – a reminder of a long ago time period when families were split in their loyalties during the Civil War.  As Kentucky was a divided state during the war, so was Mercer County.  Many Confederates from Mercer were members of Morgan’s Raiders – led by the famous General John Hunt Morgan himself!  The following obituaries are for a few of those members who died 30+ years after the war. 

IMG_6941 1Erected in memory of those brave men who gave their lives and services to the cause of the south.  By William Preston Camp No. 96 United Confederate Veterans and their surviving comrades and friends.  Spring Hill Cemetery, Mercer County, Kentucky.

The Harrodsburg Herald, Thursday, December 25, 1902

The remains of Mr. George O. Herndon, who died at the Confederate Home, were brought here Tuesday for interment.  He was a native of this county and acted for a number of years as deputy circuit clerk.  He served with much gallantry throughout the Civil War, being a member of Burn’s battery in Morgan’s command.  He was captured at Buffington Island, and was a prisoner at Camp Douglass.  He was a most gallant soldier, and a brave and fearless one.  Many of his old Confederate comrades met the casket at the train and six of them acted as pall-bearers.  They were:  J. D. Bryant, J. O. Dedman, J. W. Roberts, Charles Bonta, J. M. Board and John Lane.  Rev. J. G. Hunter, himself a member of Morgan’s command, conducted the funeral.  The interment took place in the family lot in Spring Hill.

The Harrodsburg Herald, Thursday, February 26, 1903

The community was shocked by the sudden death of Mr. Edwin M. Glave, which occurred Wednesday morning at “Wildwood”, the home of his sister, Mrs. W. W. Goddard.  For the past week he had been confined to his room with a deep cold, but his condition was not thought to be serious.  He was 76 years of age and a native of Harrison County, but has made his home in this county for the past 25 years.  He served through the Mexican War and was a member of Morgan’s command in the Confederate service.  Mr. Glave was a member of high standing in the Methodist Church.  A wife but no children survives.  Dr. Vaughn will conduct the funeral services at 2 o’clock this afternoon at “Wildwood” and the interment will take place at Spring Hill Cemetery.  His death leaves ten Mexican War veterans living in this county.

The Harrodsburg Herald, Friday, October 2, 1908

Mr. Jouett McCoun, one of the most prominent men of the Providence neighborhood, died last Thursday evening of a complication of diseases, after a lingering illness.  His funeral took place at New Providence Church on Saturday afternoon, conducted by Rev. Harvey Glass and the remains were interred in the Providence Cemetery.  Mr. McCoun was a splendid gentleman and one of the most prosperous farmers of that section of the county.  He was a member of Morgan’s command during the Civil War, and on the last raid of that famous Confederate through Kentucky in 1864, Mr. McCoun was captured at Cynthiana and was held a prisoner at Rock Island until the close of the war.  He was a native of this county and has always been held in the highest esteem.  He leaves a wife and three daughters, Misses Ora and Mabel McCoun, and Mrs. Dulin, of Shelbyville.  The pall bearers were Dr. J. W. Powell, Dr. J. P. Lapsley and Messrs. George Forsythe, Eb. Adams, James Armstrong and Henry McGee.

The Harrodsburg Herald, Friday, October 22, 1909

Mr. John Wesley Robards died at his home in the Passmore house last Friday morning at one o’clock, and was buried in Spring Hill Cemetery Sunday afternoon, the funeral being performed at the house.  Mr. Robards was a most estimable man and was as true as steel to his many friends.  He was liberal almost to a fault and was always ready to help out some worthy case of charity.  Mr. Robards was a soldier in the Confederate service during the Civil War, serving in Company H, 2nd Kentucky Cavalry, which was part of Morgan’s command.  He was highly commended by all his officers and was termed a model soldier.  Col. Duke declared that he had not better soldier in his regiment.  He served continuously from 1862 to 1865 and was in active service all of the time except about eighteen months while he was a prisoner at Camp Douglass.  Mr. Robards was 69 years of age and had lived most of his life in Harrodsburg, where he was a popular contractor, making a specialty of concrete work.  He had also done much work in Danville and other neighboring towns.  All regret his untimely end and offer sympathy to the bereaved family.  Two children, Miss Mary Augusta Robards, who lives at Frankfort, and has a splendid position at that place, and Mr. George Robards of this city, who is Deputy County clerk, survive him.  The funeral was conducted by Rev. Lon Robinson of the Methodist Church and the local Confederate Veterans were in attendance.

Confederate Civil War Veterans From Washington County

How I would love to have met this Mr. Baylor!  He and I think alike when it comes to history and preserving it and saving family histories!  I personally know of the Revolutionary War applications of which he speaks – I looked through those several years ago and copied a few.  So in that respect Mr. Orval was incorrect – it wasn’t 125 years – it was just about 75 years since he last touched the packet, before I came along and showed the same interest!

from Pioneer History of Washington County, Kentucky, by Orval W. Baylor

November 29, 1934

Veterans of 1861-1865

After placing the old declaration of Thomas Fitzgerald among the other papers that had kept it company for about a century and a quarter, and where it will probably remain for another hundred years or more, I next turned my attention to a bundle marked “Confederate Pension Applications”.

No pensions have been provided by the Federal Government for the men who fought under the Stars and Bars of the Southern Confederacy, but the State of Kentucky did provide for her sons who saw service in the army of the Lost Cause.

There was quite a bit of Southern sentiment in Washington County before and during the War Between the States and the number of men who joined the confederate Army from Washington County was fairly representative of the county’s population.  Some men, like Patrick Simms and Oscar Walker, went into the Confederate Army early in the year 1861.  They joined General John H. Morgan’s command.  Some others got into the service when Bragg’s Army passed through the county in 1862, and still others made their way at various times, to join the Southern troops in Tennessee and Virginia.

From the Pension Applications spread out before me, I select a few names and jot down parts of the declarations of the several veterans.

Patrick Simms

Patrick Simms, born in Washington County November 22, 1835; married Nannie Craycroft; enlisted at Bowling Green, Kentucky, October 6, 1861, and was assigned to Co. A, 6th Ky. Infty.  Commissioned Captain by General John H. Morgan, September 1862, and ordered to raise a company of mounted men, which he did.  Among the men who served under him was his old boyhood chum and schoolmate, Oscar Walker.  Simms was captured and imprisoned for eight months at Johnson’s Island.  After his release he joined his command and served until the time of the general surrender in April, 1865.

John T. Craycroft

John T. Craycroft, born in Washington County October 26, 1840; died in Cincinnati, Ohio, November 29, 1913; married Maria Bullock, at Fairfield, Kentucky, October 26, 1865; enlisted in Co. A, 6th Ky. Vol. Infty., familiarly known as the Orphan Brigade.  Served to the close of the war.  Participates in the battles of Chicamauga and Dallas, Georgia, and was wounded in the latter engagement.  Shelton Jeffries, a companion-in-arms, said he saw Craycroft lying on the battlefield at Dallas, “desperately wounded and placed him under the protection of branches of a cedar tree from rays of the sun, being unable to assist himself.”  When the Confederate forces were surrendered by Gen. Joseph E. Johnson, in April, 1865, he was paroled but immediately thereafter he was arrested at Dalton, Georgia, his parole was taken from him, and he was taken to Chattanooga, where he was imprisoned for two days.  He was then taken to Nashville where the oath of allegiance was administered to him and he was released.

W. B. Spears

W. B. Spears, born in Washington County, April 5, 1825; enlisted in Co. A, 6th Ky. Vol. Infty., October, 1862, served during the period of the war.  Paroled at Washington, Georgia, April 1865; arrested and imprisoned at Chattanooga; taken to Nashville where he took the oath and was released.

S. A. Mudd

S. A. Mudd, born Washington County, 1843; enlisted October, 1862, and was assigned to the “Buckner Guard”.  Served for the period of the war and was paroled at Greensboro, North Carolina, in 1865.  John T. Craycroft said he saw Mudd at Chicamauga and Dallas, and that “he saw me desperately wounded and insisted on making me as comfortable as possible under the circumstances.”

John W. Burnett

John W. Burnett, born in Washington County, April 16, 1840; joined Bragg’s Army near Springfield, in 1862, and was sworn in at College Grove, Tennessee, after the Battle of Perryville.  Served as a member of the Buckner Guards and surrendered at Greensboro, North Carolina, April, 1865.

John H. Canter

John H. Canter, born Washington County, November 15, 1839; enlisted in Morgan’s Command, Co. C, 3rd Ky. Reg., in 1862.  Was captured and imprisoned at Camp Douglass and released in March, 1865.  Made his way South and rejoined the army.  Surrendered in West Virginia and took the oath of allegiance when “we were forced to” at Cumberland Gap, June, 1865.

James Cokendolpher

James Cokendolpher, born Chaplin, Kentucky, 1845; enlisted at Munfordsville, October, 1862, in the Old Squadron, Co. B, 2nd Ky. Cavalry, C.S.A., and served under General John H. Morgan.  Was captured at the time Morgan made his famous raid across the Ohio into Indiana and Ohio and was imprisoned for nearly two years at Camp Douglass.  Exchanged early in 1865 and rejoined the army in the South.  Surrendered at Christianbury, Virginia.  John H. Purdy said he was with Cokendolpher all the time.

The History of Marion County, Kentucky

This history of Marion County, Kentucky, I know very well.  In the summer between my senior year of high school and first semester at college I worked at our local public library – in Marion County.  Having spent many, many hours there in the previous several years, going through census records – micro fiche – no books at that time! – and pouring over the county histories and family histories for records of my family – I was very familiar with the library, and excited when I was hired!  One of my tasks, other than shelving books, checking out customers, etc., was to type an extra copy of this history by W. T. Knott!  There are perhaps 100 pages.  We did not have copy machines (1975) so if you wanted an extra copy it was typed!  I was fascinated with the book – so loved every moment of my typing assignment!

In previous posts the history of the author, W. T. Knott, was the subject at hand, and early settlers were discussed.  This post is about the Civil War in Marion County – part two – along with part two of General John Hunt Morgan.

from The History of Marion County by W. T. Knott

The morning of the 5th day of July, 1863, found the military post at Lebanon commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Charles Hanson, of the 20th Kentucky Infantry.  Early on the morning of that day, Colonel John Hunt Morgan, in command of two brigades of Confederate Calvary, arrived before the town, and sent in a flag of truce, demanding the surrender of the Federal forces and the town.  Colonel Hanson, having but about 300 men fit for duty, reported his situation by telegraph to the commander of the department, who was at that time stationed in Louisville.  In reply Hanson was ordered to defend himself and the town by posting his men in the houses; that very soon he would be re-enforced by the command of Colonel David, who at that time, no doubt, was very near the town, coming from towards Danville with a battery and force of cavalry.  The anxiety of Morgan to capture the Federal troops before a large Federal force that he knew was following him, led by Generals E. H. Hobson and Woolford, should arrive and being impatient of the delay, he ordered the town to be set on fire.  The torch was at once applied to several dwellings, among others those of Dr. Ben Spalding, Dr. J. C. Maxwell, L. H. Noble, Mrs. Abell and J. S. Braddock.  Hanson, seeing the situation, and to save the utter destruction of the town already commenced, and despairing of receiving the promised assistance, displayed the white flag and surrendered his entire force to Morgan unconditionally.  Morgan then ordered his forces to cease the burning of private property and to assist in subduing the flames of those already burning.  This order was, however, too late to save any house to which the torch had been applied.  The engine house, containing a large amount of commissary and quartermaster stores, had been burned by Hanson previous to his surrender.  The fire from the depot, which was burned by Morgan, set on fire the dwelling and store house of C. Beeler, with an almost total loss of the contents of both.  Several other buildings had also taken fire but were fortunately saved.  The Confederates, finding one or two of their men in jail, released them, and, as many indictments had been filed against Confederate soldiers in the clerk’s office, that building, with all the records of the circuit and county courts since the county was organized was set on fire and all totally destroyed.  This to the county, as well as to citizens, was an irreparable loss.  [Think of the genealogy records that went up in flames!]

The surrender of Hanson was between twelve and one o’clock; between three and four p.m., after the Confederate forces had enjoyed the privileges and hospitalities of the town, they took leave, with Colonel Hanson’s forces, numbering about 300 men, as prisoners, on the road towards Springfield.  After the command with its prisoners had left town, and arrived at the toll gate near Mrs. Joseph Spalding’s residence, the Federal troops that were to have re-enforced Colonel Hanson appeared on Grime’s hill, a mile from town on the Danville Pike, and fired a few shells across the country towards the Springfield Pike, along which Morgan’s command was leisurely marching.  Colonel Hanson and his 300 soldiers, then prisoners, and on foot, were taken to Springfield where they were paroled.  It appears that the brave Colonel David, in command of this force of Federal soldiers, in spite of the desire of some of his subordinates to “hurry to the rescue of the Federal forces and property at Lebanon,” had ordered a halt a few miles above town, and in a beautiful shady grove remained in full enjoyment of ease, comfort and safety from ten a.m. until after three p.m.  It was supposed that the brave commander kept himself well posted as to the progress of the battle, and as soon as the enemy retired he boldly rushed to the top of Grime’s hill, exploded a few shells in the direction the enemy had gone, and leading his cavalry in one grand, thundering charge, he came like a grand cyclone, down on the town, sweeping the desolate streets and finally captured the town, after killing, just above the smoldering remains of the depot on Depot Street, one poor drunken Confederate who had become “overwhelmed by the hospitalities” of the town, and was still somewhat oblivious to the exact status of his surroundings, as he was endeavoring to find the street on which his command had left town.

In the battle Lieutenant Tom Morgan, of Morgan’s command, and a brother of General John Hunt Morgan, was killed while bravely leading the charge on the depot building then occupied by Hanson and his 300 men.  He fell on the Campbellsville Pike somewhere between the residences of Mr. John L. Edmonds and Mr. George T. Edelen.  Total killed and wounded so far as known – Federals – killed 5, wounded 22.  Confederates – killed, 13 reported, wounded, reported about 30.  There are reasons, however, to believe that the number of killed and wounded Confederates was much greater than reported.

Lebanon was continued as a military post for several years after this.  Among others whose names are not remembered, were Colonel Motley, Colonel Wood, Captain James M. Fidler and Lieutenant Horton, who were Post Commanders at different periods from Morgan’s raid of July, 1863, until the close of the war in 1865.  During the year 1864 the civil war was at its zenith of blood and carnage.  Scarcely a day passed that some family did not read the sad tidings of a dead of wounded father, husband, brother or son, for scarcely an important battle was fought during the war that Marion County was not represented on one side or the other, and oftentimes on both sides – brother against brother and neighbors against neighbors.

The History of Marion County, Kentucky

This history of Marion County, Kentucky, I know very well.  In the summer between my senior year of high school and first semester at college I worked at our local public library – in Marion County.  Having spent many, many hours there in the previous several years, going through census records – micro fiche – no books at that time! – and pouring over the county histories and family histories for records of my family – I was very familiar with the library, and excited when I was hired!  One of my tasks, other than shelving books, checking out customers, etc., was to type an extra copy of this history by W. T. Knott!  There are perhaps 100 pages.  We did not have copy machines (1975) so if you wanted an extra copy it was typed!  I was fascinated with the book – so loved every moment of my typing assignment!

In previous posts the history of the author, W. T. Knott, was the subject at hand, and early settlers were discussed.  This post is about the Civil War in Marion County.  John Hunt Morgan came through and made the town his own.  Just a few days after the Confederates moved out of Lebanon they met Federal troops at the little town of Perryville, Kentucky.  And just so you know, General Morgan was not  finished with the town of Lebanon – he comes around again in part two of the civil war days of Marion County.

from The History of Marion County by W. T. Knott

Occasion for recording “war history” of our county did not exist again until the year 1850.  In that year forebodings of an impending civil war in the United States were afloat everywhere over our country.  Little did the citizens realize the horrors that a civil war would bring upon the country.  Little did they appreciate what utter desolation, ruin and misery were so soon to overtake and overwhelm a great portion of our territory, and that so many hundreds of thousands of the then happy, prosperous citizens were so soon destined to reap the most dire consequences of a long and bloody war.  Nothing like a true conception at that time of coming events existed in any mind.  Older men felt grave apprehensions, it is true, but took their places fearlessly on the one side or the other, determined boldly to face whatever might be the consequences.  Younger men seemed joyous and merry as if they were anticipating a mere picnic where there might be “some hardship, but abundance of fun,” and that the dark clouds would soon go away.

On the 20th day of December, 1860, South Carolina passed the ordinance of secession, and in a short time many of the Southern states followed her example.  On the 4th day of February, 1861, Jefferson Davis was chosen President of the new government.  On the 12th day of April, 1861, Edmund Ruffin, under orders from P. C. T. Beauregard, fired the first gun of the civil war, its shot crashing against the granite walls of Fort Sumpter, whilst its report sounded and resounded, echoed and re-echoed, announcing the beginning of the civil war to every citizen of our country and of the whole world as well.

Marion County, until that shot, was comparatively quiet, but very soon the community gave unmistakable evidence of political disintegration.  Old men and young men elected their positions; many on each side hurried off to join the armies of their choice.  Some families divided, one son would enlist in one army, his brother in the army opposed.  Even our women were partisans; some support the stars and stripes while others held up the stars and bars.  The county was not all excitement, many of our prominent citizens were for the Union, as it was, and opposed to the Southern act of secession; others were in favor of succession and were ready to fight for the cause and left the county for the purpose of casting their lots with the Southern army; other good citizens were in favor of Kentucky neutrality – that is, they wished our state to arm her citizens and to whip both armies or either of them if they dared to cross our borders.  The Union party in the county, being largely in the majority, at once organized two companies of “Home Guards” in Lebanon, with many men from the county as members, for the purpose of protection or to meet any emergency that might arise.  The first company organized elected T. C. Woods as captain; the other company was commanded by Captain Richard Knott.  Shortly after the organization of the “Home Guard Companies” two camps were established for the purpose of recruiting and drilling volunteers for the service of the United States army.  C. S. Hill was commissioned Colonel and had charge of the camp “B. Spalding”.  For the purpose of recruiting a regiment of state troops, Colonel Hill resigned his commission as Colonel of U.S. Volunteers and Colonel John M. Harlan, now one of the Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States, took his place as commander of his camp, and filled the regiment.  Their recruiting camp was called “E. A. Graves” and commanded by W. Anderson, from Louisville.  The General George H. Thompson estate was headquarters at Lebanon in the later part of November, 1861, and from that day until the close of the war Lebanon served as a post.

On the 10th day of July, 1862, while the post at Lebanon was guarded by only fifty or sixty soldiers under the command of Colonel Johnson – who was, I think,
Colonel of the 28th Kentucky Infantry – Colonel John H. Morgan commanding a battalion of Confederate Cavalry, raided the county and town and after a slight skirmish with the small body of U. S. soldiers under Colonel Johnson and a company of Home Guards, just out of the limits of the town on the Campbellsville road, put to flight and captured the whole force, killing two of the Home Guards, Moses Rickets and M. Deig, a German and recent citizen.  After Morgan’s force had burned Camp Crittenden, and all the quartermaster and commissary and ordinance stores and paroled his prisoners, he moved in the direction of Springfield.  In a few days after Morgan’s raid our town was again occupied by Federal soldiers, Colonel Owens, commanding the 60th Indiana Regiment and a battalion of the 9th Pennsylvania Cavalry under him as scouts, took possession of what was left of the military post, and at once proceeded to barricade the town, and issue orders that no person should leave the town without a pass from the military.  In the course of three or four weeks the post was re-enforced with forces under General Dumont, who superseded Colonel Owens and immediately began to add to the fortifications of the town, and throw up earthworks on some of the elevated surrounding of the town.  Common sense was a very scarce article with General Dumont, as it would appear when he bent every energy to perfect a complete “death pen” for his own men by digging trenches and planting fence rails and stakes across the street to “keep the enemy out and to keep his soldiers in,” while the town is so situated in a valley surrounded by high hills and knobs, and the occupancy by the enemy of any two or three, with a few pieces of artillery could have knocked the town into atoms, without the least danger to themselves.

On September 7, 1862, General Bragg having entered the state, General Dumont withdrew his forces from Lebanon, leaving a large amount of military and commissionary stores.  The day following Colonel Scott, entered and took possession of the place and left Dr. W. W. Cleaver, a citizen of our town and a surgeon in the Confederate army, in command of the post, who at once had the ditch filled and the barricades removed, for which the citizens were very thankful indeed.  Dr. Cleaver in the meantime recruited a company for the Confederate service.  During the time that the Confederate forces held this military post, and while Cleaver and others were recruiting in this and adjoining counties, the proclamation of President Lincoln abolishing slavery in the southern states “unless they returned to the Union before January 1, 1863,” was received at Lebanon.  Proclamation was dated September 22, 1862.  The Confederate forces evacuated Lebanon on the 5th day of October, 1862, and on the third day thereafter (October 8) the battle of Perryville was fought, from which bloody field of battle, many wounded Federals, as well as Confederate prisoners, were brought to Lebanon and cared for by the medical department of the Federals.  Our citizen women, true to all the traits of pure, noble womanhood, came forward, laying aside, for the time being, all partisan feeling, and prejudice, administering to the wants of the wounded and dying, closing the eyes, with motherly and sisterly tenderness, of those whom they had never seen before, dropping here and there a tear of sympathy beside the cold dead face of some woman’s son or brother or husband (they knew not who), and offering up a silent prayer that their loved ones, if ever on the battlefield should meet with like misfortunes, might have the like of kindness shown to them by strangers.  In this mission of love our women administered to the wants and necessities of expiring.  Federal and Confederate soldiers alike.  The “Stars and Stripes” and the “Stars and Bars” were on such occasions of death and suffering, for the time being, furled, hidden and forgotten.